cat as hat Last week’s cartoon,  about a helpful thing you could say to a sad friend,  is here. All rights reserved, and content including cartoon is © Donna Barstow 2014, with a variety of cartoons there. Sign up on Facebook to get notified of new cartoons. Thanks!

Today’s cartoon is about interpreting what we think we see; the mental picture does not always coincide with reality. You can’t always trust your first impression.

The title of this cartoon, The Man Who Mistook His Cat for a Hat sounds like  Dr. Suess!, but I was actually inspired by reading a New York Times bestseller by a neurologist, Dr. Oliver Sacks, called The Man Who Mistook his Wife for a Hat, and other clinical tales. This is a collection of clinical studies from patients of Dr. Sacks; for instance, the man in the title story could not recognize familiar objects like clothing, hats…or his own wife.

I was curious about this perceptual neurology, but I’ve come to think it’s actually very common in day to day experiences: when you mis-see a headline, think a stranger looks like someone you know, or can picture a lost object that is just NOT exactly where you last saw it!

I have never mistaken a cat for a hat, but sometimes when I get out of bed in the morning, my hair looks like a cat ran his paws through it.