Wednesday, March 18, 2009
So this has not been updated in a while, and yet I still spend a good amount of time doing "research" on Wikipedia. So I think its time for some new posts. Since I wasn't planning on posting, I didn't read very closely, so here are a few quick tidbits from recent searches. Night terrors was a subject brought up at work, but when I looked that up there was actually an even more interesting article on sleep paralysis. This is when you wake up, yet are unable to move. This happens because during REM sleep (which is the part of the sleep cycle where you dream) your body is paralyzed so that you do not act out your dreams. With sleep paralysis, your mind is no longer in REM and you are conscious, but your body remains paralyzed. This can often be accompanied by visual or auditory hallucinations. Apparently in african-american culture this phenomenon is often referred to as "the witch riding your back" as a common hallucination is of something on your chest. Another possible association with this phenomenon is the "alien abduction" sensation, I can't remember now if I learned that bit from a conversation or from wikipedia. I had a conversation with a friend recently about this, and he had experienced this phenomenon twice. I have never, and hope that it doesn't happen either!
My latest wikipedia foray has been into Northern Ireland political parties, particularly the DUP and Ian Paisley and the latest Party leader Peter Robinson. My survey of this information was fairly brief, and since I have no familiarity I don't know that I can pass along anything insightful. However, I think its interesting that Peter Robinson, the current leader, apparently was involved with an opposing unionist party earlier in his career that led an attack on Ian Paisley. And then he was his successor!! (Although I cannot tell from wikipedia whether he is his successor as a political ally or an opponent as possibly the party wanted a change in direction, it is unclear to me whether Ian Paisley voluntarily stepped down or whether he stepped down due to pressure). It is interesting stuff though! Because I am less familiar, it seems much more exciting than american politics!