Patsy Porco

A Gray Matter

In Aging, Humor on January 14, 2015 at 5:13 pm

“Where ignorance is bliss,/ Tis folly to be wise.”

— Thomas Gray

Ever since I read my MRI report* and discovered that I had mild brain atrophy—which my doctor had neglected to mention during my visit—I’ve been determined to stop any more atrophying and, if possible, reverse the damage. The jury is out on whether this is possible, but some doctors—or people posing as doctors on the Internet—claim that it can be done, so that’s good enough for me.

I also learned, from my Googling, that a deficiency in vitamin B12 can lead to brain atrophy, so I started eating those supplements like candy. I then attempted to join the brain-training website, Lumosity, but I was too dumb. Before Lumosity hits you up for a lot of money to play games to train your brain, they give you a “fit test” to assess your baseline scores. I played three sets of games that tested three different abilities (speed, train of thought, and memory). At the end of the test, I got my results. According to Lumosity, I scored higher than 19% of everyone in the world in speed, 14% in train of thought, and 3% in memory. Three percent. That means that 97% of the world has a better memory than I have. This worked to my advantage, though; by the time they asked me for my choice of payment to join, I had forgotten what I was signing up for, and left the site without cracking my wallet.

My boss told me that her neurologist husband believes that doing puzzles can improve brain atrophy so, right after work today, I’m heading over to Toys”R”Us. I hope he was referring to those wooden puzzles, or even the 100-piece scenic ones. If he meant crosswords or Sudoku, I’m out of luck. I’m no good at all at crossword puzzles, and I can’t even fathom how to work a Sudoku. Wish me luck.

* Read about it here at

  1. Hey Patsy I thought this was a really funny blog post 🙂

  2. I tried Lumosity a couple years ago and my score also started out very low. I paid the monthly subscription fee for 1.5 years and I improved quite a lot. Practice not only makes perfect(er) but the exercise really is good for your brain. Don’t let early failure scare you off.

  3. Do you think Lumosity improves your brain or your game-playing abilities?

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