Research overload?

I don’t know exactly what has been happening to me lately. In the past few days, perhaps even in the past week, I have had a hard time focusing on my usual, almost daily online research. I start looking things up but am easily distracted and, again easily!, get a case of the fidgets.

I recently “unearthed” a new plant extract that has anti-myeloma effects in vitro (eh, what else is new?)…discoveries like that usually make me spend hours online doing research. So why am I not able to concentrate on this new substance or anything else that has to do with research? This morning I finally erased about a dozen unopened Science Daily updates without even glancing quickly at them. Ehhh? What’s wrong?

Well, I may have reached the point of…research overload. That’s my conclusion. The huge amount of information, web links, e-mails and whatnot that I receive every day may finally have…saturated my brain.

As you may have noticed from my shorter posts these days, I have pulled back a bit from my daily blogging routine. This doesn’t mean that I am abandoning my blog, eh. That will never happen. I love my blog. I check in at least twice a day to see if I have any comments (or, horror, spam messages that need to be erased). If I find a neat link, I add it to my blogroll. I never thought I would become so attached to a project like this, but well, I am hooked for good. I love reading readers’ comments. I love corresponding with you all. I (usually) enjoy doing my research. And without my blog, I never would have met Sherlock (in real life, I mean). Ah, I would indeed have missed out on A LOT.

On a brighter note: Stefano and I are in the midst of planning a late spring or early summer trip to see the puffins. Very exciting. You may recall my I-adore-puffins! post. Well, the long-awaited puffin trip is really going to happen (for those who have no idea what I am talking about: puffins are funny-looking seabirds, see for more info and photos; there are also many websites, such as Scotland’s "SOS Puffin" or Maine’s "Project Puffin," that allow you to adopt a puffin: a little money goes a long way!).

I confess, I can’t wait! If we could leave tomorrow…but of course right now the puffins are still way out in the Atlantic Ocean. We won’t be able to see them until April-May, when they come ashore to breed.

Yes, this is Puffin Year. My wish is about to be granted! 


  1. I am sorry to hear of your ‘chronic-blog’ syndrome, Margaret,
    I have always marvelled at your ability to hold down a job,
    run a family home, and keep us updated on the very latest
    about myeloma. Now I feel a touch of guilt reading the blog.
    And what about the cost of all this? All these cutting-edge
    research findings that you publish. They must cost you money
    as well as time and effort.I would gladly pay my whack towards
    it, but alas I am not capable of researching like you.
    Besides what you have written so far is enough for a book.
    It will keep my busy to revise it all until you come back from
    Puffin Island.
    Scotland is marvellous especially in late spring before the
    midges come out, so don’t leave it too late in the year.
    Did you know that there are tropical palms growing in
    Inverew Gardens ? Right up in the Scottish Highlands!
    Now there’s a thing!
    If you get to the Isle of Mull be sure to take a boat trip to
    Staffa.There you will see Fingal’s Cave,home of the hermit
    Fingal and inspiration to Mendelssohn’s Overture
    “Fingal’s Cave”- and the surrounding water will be full of
    puffins.Hundreds of ’em!

    (Annie and I used to love Scotland but I no longer drive so
    it’s no longer an option for us.)

    Don’t forget to bring back piccies, and if you don’t get
    yourself a kilt you will — er– you will have to go right back again!

    You boldness in commencing curcumin has been inspirational
    and it is such a delight that you continue to live a happy life.

    Do please take care, take a good rest,and come back full
    of dash and vigour.
    With every good wish to you and to Stephano,
    Old Bill.

  2. Dear Old Bill,
    I just wanted to make it clear that I don’t pay anything for the full studies that I read and quote from in my posts. I have a couple of very generous friends who have free access to all the journals I need. They send me these studies (for free, of course). But thank you SO much for your very sweet offer! 🙂
    My current “syndrome” isn’t chronic, by the way. At least, I hope not! I wouldn’t even call it a syndrome. Just a bit of “lack of the ability to focus.”
    But last night one of the above-mentioned friends sent me an interesting study on myeloma that I hope to read and post about today.
    For now, though, I am off to take a walk. Glorious day here in Florence!
    As for Scotland, I plan to take enough photos of puffins and castles and moors to fill my blog for the next…couple of centuries! Anyway, we won’t be leaving for another couple of months or so, so don’t hold your breath. 😉
    Take care, everyone!

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