Monday, January 7, 2008
Is It Moving or Not?
I have been reading a marvelous book about Michael May, a guy who was blinded when he was 3 in an explosion. The book is called Crashing Through by Robert Kurson (a UW grad) and it's hard to put down.
May decides to have a very new and interesting surgery done to his eye in order to perhaps restore vision. What I found to be compelling was his courage, his tenacity and his humanity.
In addition, the science and theories behind the surgery and the brain/vision connection are fascinating. Some of the tests they use on May (curiously enough, the author often refers to the characters by their last name, which I find to be a mostly male trait) are optical illusions to those of us whose brains work with their vision.
May had no concept of depth perception. He would reach out to touch a painting in order to feel what it was and still could not perceive that it was a painting. He would also try to touch the landscape even though he knew that those mountains were far from his touch. This book has skewed my perception.
It's a great read.
Today's quote comes from Helen Keller - a woman who never ceases to amaze me: Be of good cheer. Do not think of today's failures, but of the success that may come tomorrow. You have set yourself a difficult task, but you will succeed if you persevere; and you will find a joy in overcoming obstacles.