Car Keys

“It isn’t so astonishing, the number of things that I can remember, as the number of things I can remember that aren’t so.” ~ Mark Twain

My memory is failing. At the ripe age of 71, this is disconcerting. Could be a problem.

So I’m watching a presentation of how the human brain works on the history channel. The subject interests me.

So yada, yada, yada, and 30 minutes into the show it begins to examine memory. How we remember things.

OK. Now this is getting close to home.

Long story short, we digitize everything we see, hear, smell, and experience. Our brain recalls the correct series of digitized things it has stored, each in a different area, and bingo……………… a view of the Grand Canyon from the south rim is magically displayed in our imagination.

The key is focus. We remember what we focus on and little else.

Consider this example:

A telephone number displayed as 9035248739 is difficult, if not impossible, to remember.

The same number displayed as (903) 524-8739, with little effort, is relatively easy to remember because it is broken into components.

The primary reason, as I understood it, is because visually, it is easier to focus on the individual components of the number. Each one is stored in a separate part of the brain and recall involves withdrawing the correct component from its assigned area.

I need to pay close attention to my surroundings, my thoughts, my words, my actions, and life as it swirls around me.

But wait. I’ve spent a lifetime doing that. What has it got me?

I think I’ll choose to ignore most current events and the people involved. They’ve all become too tedious and predictable.

Senility – a better option?

Now where did I put those keys? That’s something to focus on.

“Nothing is more responsible for the good old days than a bad memory.” ~ Franklin P Adams

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