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My Phenomenal Memory

Updated on May 18, 2014

My phenomenally bad memory

Let me tell you about my memory. To begin with, I'd like to tell you what I think happened, which would explain the reason why my memory is so bad at times. My mother, she's the culprit. Here's my take on it. I think when she was carrying me, she decided, this one,(meaning me),does not need a good memory, so I'll just keep that for myself, I'll bequeath to her, let's see, oh maybe, the gift of gab............. Now that's my story and I'm sticking with it. You see the reason I say that, is, at the age of eighty something her memory is phenomenal, it's just as sharp as ever. If she has ever known your phone number she still knows it, and not just one number, all of your numbers. Just give her your home, cell, or work number, and she remembers them all. See what I tell you. Now I, on the other hand, can't remember my own sometimes. It's not just numbers, she can remember how to get to any place that she's been, even if she's only been there once. Mind you, my memory has nothing to do with age, I've been like this all my life.

What I have the biggest problem with is putting name to face and place. What I mean by that is, when I run into someone that I've known from awhile back, I can't, for the life of me, remember where I know them from. Usually the face is familiar, but not the name and where I knew them from.

Let me give you a scenario, A person with a familiar face will come up to me and speak to me by name, and begin a conversation, and my mind starts to race. Mind you, I never let on that I don't know where I know them from or their name. However, I immediately begin to fake it, I join the conversation, with generalities, a lot of "oh yeahs, you don' t say, really," and the like. All the while I'm going crazy, trying to figure out where I know them from, or even their name. Don't let any of my children be with me, they're standing at a distance just laughing, because they know, from experience, that I don't know the person. Now here's the kicker, when the conversation is almost over and if I still haven't placed them, I'll sometimes insert, "do you still live over there, or do you still work over there," and if the person hasn't caught on yet they will just answer accordingly. Now my children, will say "you don't know who she or he is do you?" I was nearly caught once, using that ruse, the lady said, "did you ever know where I lived," and I just kept it going, and said "yeah, over on," and she finished the sentence.

Another time, I was speaking with this lady, and she saw the blank look on my face and she said, "you don't know who I am do you?" I had to admit, that I didn't, however, after a bit I remembered. Those occasions are all too common for me. You see, I go through this because people seem to be insulted if they remember you and you don't remember them. I can't explain why people remember me so well, and I don't remember them, sometimes, at all.

Keys and cell phones are another problem that I have. Is it just me, or do you feel too, that there is a keys and cell phone monitor, (you know, like a hall monitor), living in our homes or maybe just following us around, just waiting for us to put those things down, so they can move them to where they think they're suppose to go. At times I am so sure that I put my keys in a certain place and they are nowhere to be found. I can be running late for something important, (another problem), and my keys are always just out of reach, and I am just running around like crazy trying to find them, and believe it or not they are just where I left them, usually in the bottom of my purse. My cell phone, I'll look in my purse, not there, (I'll think). Here I go again, running around looking for my phone, not finding it anywhere. Then I'll get the bright idea to dial it, and guess where it's ringing from, you guessed it, my purse. See there, that proves it, the monitor put it there when I was not looking.

Don't get me started on sun glasses or just glasses in general. You just know where they always wind up. Let me tell you a story about one of my sun glass fiasco's. I was delivering flowers to a funeral home, and I had to deliver them to the viewing room. When I entered the viewing room I saw the deceased, she looked so peaceful, as if she was just sleeping. So I just stopped to take a closer look, then put the flowers down and left. When I got to my car I could not find my sun glasses. So I went back in and asked the ladies at the desk, and we all began looking around for them. I was in a panic, because they were prescription, and to replace them would have cost me a bundle. All of a sudden I remembered that I had peered into the casket, so I assumed that I'd left them there. So I went back up to look for them. They weren't there! I then came back down, and we all proceeded to look again. All of a sudden, one of the ladies asked me, what did they looked like, she then asked, "do they look like the ones on your head?" Needless to say we all had a good laugh. That's not the only place they hide on your person, sometimes they hide right on the front of your shirt or blouse.

Cars and other things

Another thing that causes me problems, and that's, where I parked my car. When I was self-employed, I was in the delivery business, I actually did some of the deliveries myself. I was always in a rush, so at times I'd just jump out of my car and run to make the drop. That happened quite a lot for me.

One time in particular, I was making my drop, there were people on the corner just looking at me, I surmise it was because I was moving so fast. I ran in, left the package, got back to my car, as I began to adjust my rear view mirror, I looked up and saw, "oh, no, I'm in the wrong car." I proceeded to gather my things, get out and lock the car and run back to the other car and insert my key in the door. To my surprise, the key didn't work. What! I took a second look, the cars were identical, I was in the right car after all. What I should have realized, while I was in the first car, that my key had actually opened the door. I had to go back to my car, with the people laughing so hard, that I had to laugh too. Oh, I have a million of them.

Back to my mother, using that phenomenal memory that she denied me, will ask me, do I remember someone that I knew when I was young, someone that, maybe, use to visit us often. Of course I don't, but I'll just play along for awhile, then she, knowing me as she does, will say, "you don't remember do you." I'll have to admit that I don't. Let's be fair now, I have been away from home for a lot of years, that's my excuse for that.

My phenomenally good memory

Of course, there is the flip side of the coin, there are things that I have not problem remembering, such as numbers related to accounts that I've had. For instance if I commit to memory a credit card account number or loan number, I remember it for the duration of the loan or the like. Speaking of remembering numbers, once while working at a major department store, I repeated the customer's card number that I had just memorized, she nearly freaked out. She said she was glad that I was honest. However, I never made a practice of that.

I can remember childhood events vividly. I also can learn and remember the geographical layout of any city that I stay in for at least two days. I'm still often called for directions to any city in Southern California, because that was my territory for quite sometime. I committed to memory the Thomas Guide, (the map book for California, before GPS),coordinates for Southern California. I can also remember, deep, moving, meaningful conversations that I've had with someone, no matter how far back it goes. So you see I have a phenomenal memory, phenomenally bad and phenomenally good, it just depends on what it's for. It's been said that we select the things that we want to remember, I don't want to believe that, because that says that I don't want to remember people that I meet, that's so not true. So I'll just go on believing the way I believe, that my memory is phenomenal.


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    • fastfreta profile imageAUTHOR

      Alfreta Sailor 

      8 years ago from Southern California

      I was just going back over some of my hubs and discovered that I had never responded to your comment create a page. So I say a belated thank you for you funny comment.

    • create a page profile image

      create a page 

      8 years ago from Maryland, USA

      You had me cracking up. Do you even remember me? I met you in Southern California last year. No, I am just kidding lol. I have lost my prescription glasses so often. I lost it weeks ago, and I am tired of looking for them now. They will probably show up when I do not need them. Like you, I have lost keys, cell phones etc. We seem to have a similar memory phenomenon, but I am determined to beat it. I never thought my mother contributed to mine though lol. Thank you for this great hub. You are such a gifted writer.

    • fastfreta profile imageAUTHOR

      Alfreta Sailor 

      8 years ago from Southern California

      Thanks Ashleyr, for visiting. Come back again soon!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      My memory is good and bad. I have an excellent long term memory and a horrible short term memory. . . I thorougly enjoy your articles. Kee[ it up!


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