I’ve Forgotten Your Face, but I can’t Look You Up in the Pictorial Directory, Because I’ve Forgotten Your Name, Too

I won’t deny that the memory diminution that comes with aging is a pain in the neck, if not regions well south thereof, but it’s particularly annoying when that faculty was fairly faint and whimsical from the beginning.photoI seem to have always had a mind less like the proverbial steel trap and much more decidedly iffyβ€”more like, say, a somewhat loosely constructed sieve. It’s pretty good at catching and holding on to big chunky things: that air can be walked through but concrete walls cannot, or that elephants are large and mosquitoes are much smaller yet probably more dangerous in general. But so much slips right on through where I had hoped to store it that sometimes I think it’s a miracle I managed to remember to wear clothes when leaving the house, or to use deodorant rather than shoe polish under my arms. Not that shiny taupe underarms wouldn’t be a wonderfully glamorous fashion statement on anyone.

Perhaps it’s a contributor to my innovative and playful artistic soul, this having a mind so ill equipped to deal with quotidian and purposeful information in useful ways. When I can so seldom remember anyone’s name, let alone his birthday, or what appointments I made with which doctor, let alone what the dates were, it forces me to do some clever detective work and further develop my problem-solving skills, so maybe that’s just nature’s way of keeping me on my toes. In any event, I hope no one takes too much offense for too long that I keep asking them to repeat their names and hope that they’ll drop some hints about the context in which I am supposed to know them, when I think it’s a major feat of memory and deductive reasoning on my part to have realized that I might know them at all.

It truly isn’t that I don’t care; I simply find that getting a memory and keeping it where it can eventually be retrieved intact are not necessarily related, nor are they either one fully functional facilities in my would-be Taj Mahal of a memory palace. Of course, it’s hard enough to try building a memory palace if I forget what one is, or that I meant to try it, too. Apparently the elephants-who-never-forget have long since sashayed out of the place without me.

16 thoughts on “I’ve Forgotten Your Face, but I can’t Look You Up in the Pictorial Directory, Because I’ve Forgotten Your Name, Too

  1. I was going to say how good the post was…but…I have forgotten what it was about; just a minute I will go back to re-read it. Oh better not because then I will forget that I was leaving a reply. Does all this mean I suffer the same as you…that…that…oh what are the words? Ah yes, quick before it goes again…memory loss. πŸ™‚

  2. I enjoy your sense of humour Kathryn. Your post has left me smiling and that’s a good thing. However I remember too much, and sometimes this can work against me as I store defunct phone numbers, old car registration numbers, clients’ names and sometimes even addresses from a job 30 years ago etc etc. i simply cant erase these things; think how much more room I could make for useful storage! 😊 😊 xx

  3. Love it! I also have a lousy memory for names but am clever at figuring things out to make it appear as if I hadn’t forgotten at all. lol The picture of the elephant made me smile with this post. Thank you! (Hopefully I’ll remember it.)

  4. Great! I ran out of RAM and Hard drive storage a long time ago, and now I have to forget something in order to remember something new, and I usually don’t get a say on what I forget! πŸ˜€

    • So true. The internal echoes the external problem of choosing what to keep and what is not serving its purposes and should be kicked to the curb. You two know that outer version better than most, after the last couple of years’ preparations!!

  5. Peeled & sliced a large, fat, fresh garlic clove & it disappeared instantly, literally disappeared. I never did find it, have searched the entire kitchen, including garbage & disposal. Frustrating to lose something only seconds after having it right in hand. Cannot for the life of me figure out what in the world I did with it…

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