Did you know that Wayne Gretzky’s birthday is January 26th? And did you know that the work “posh” originated from when the wealthy British would travel to the continent? They preferred the shaded side of the ship, so their tickets were assigned “Port Over, Starboard Home”. And did you know that this and copious amounts of other ridiculous tidbits of useless information clog my brain to the point where there’s not much room for anything else? Seriously, my brain is full.
This could be an age-related thing, I’ll admit. But I think it’s only because I’m old enough to have gathered a ton of crap to clog me up, not because I’ve become forgetful. I’ll tell you something for nothing, though – it’s annoying as hell. When I was younger and less cluttered, I could meet you once and remember any and all details you may have told me, i.e. your birthday, spouse’s name, why you prefer pecans to walnuts – whatever! It was in there, easily accessed the next time we met. But now…now, your face may be familiar, maybe at a stretch, your name, but anything else – gone.
There was a show here in town recently where the theme was comics doing other comics material. The producer asked me if I wanted to perform, but while I’ve seen many, many friends perform many, many times, I’d be hard pressed to do even one of their bits verbatim. Hell, I have a hard enough time remembering my own material.
As a result, I’ve developed a defence mechanism. When people start chatting about their lives, I’ll listen with enthusiasm, I really will. But if there is too much detail, I’ll likely tune out. It’s not because I’m not interested, it’s because if I have to learn the name of your dog, or retain when your aunt is scheduled to visit, I may just lose something valuable, like my kids’ birthdays or a writing deadline. So, if you notice my eyes glazing over, please know that I’m sorry, but it truly is me, not you.