Is dopamine what makes me write this blog?
I have so few readers, why do I carry on with this blog? My best so far is 60 readers in a single day:
Is it a tiny amount of dopamine which gives me pleasure as I see that I did better today than yesterday?
An experiment in the 1950s showed that rats contained in a cage continually pressed a lever which resulted in a them getting a dose of dopamine. Pushing the lever closed an external electronic circuit which stimulated electrodes embedded in the rat's brain, and this caused the dopamine release. The rat preferred pressing the lever to exercising, eating, or even sex.
But I heard about this on a radio program and it occurred to me that even a doubling from 7 to 14 readers may provoke a tiny release of pleasure giving chemicals in my brain. So I write yet another blog post in the (unconscious?) hope of getting another dopamine release the following day.
I mean to say, I could be doing more ambitious things. I could (slowly) write the greatest English language comic novel. Or I could try at least. Or I could create all that art I dream of based on electronics, stepper motors, microphones and lights. I could.
Or I could simply write another blog post.