Saturday, 15 November 2008

What's it All About, Alfie, cont...

Memory or lack of it is disturbing and often mentioned by bloggers. Many bloggers are 'long in the tooth' and somewhat frightened of 'losing it'. I am certainly no exception to the rule. Plus the condition seems to go back to childhood. Why on earth did I go into Derby on my bike, for instance, and come home on the bus. (The bike was still there when I recovered it a couple of days later, propped up against the kerb by a pedal, nonchalantly, if bikes do nonchalance, waiting to be recovered.) Plus recovering football boots left on Barton buses was a regular occurence during my less than exceptional school career. But why do our memory lapses so often seem selective rather than a permanent reminder that our brains are declining at a rapid rate of brain cells per day.
I can remember my first motor cycle, a 197cc Francis-Barnett. I can even remember the number plate, TNU 137. The year, either 1957 or 58. Similarly fond memories of my beloved Mini Cooper S, number GDT 703C, bought around 1967. My Vespa Scooter, minivan, Moscavich, A35, even the motorhome I parted with only early this year, nothing. My guess is that we have more fond memories in some circumstances than in others. In other words we remember what we judged as important. Our daily routines are almost set on 'automatic pilot', we merely go through the motions. Yet number plates are obscure, abstract details of of no importance whatsoever. How strange that such minutia can stay seemingly forever in the mind. What do you remember in life that will always stay with you?
I honestly believe that everything we ever experience is stored in the mind forever. The human brain is far superior to any computer. Extracting it is a different problem. I have been involved for a long time in cataloging my life as a child growing up after the war. Some of it I have recorded in great detail. In at the deep end of the old tin bath aged five; learning to smoke at the age of eleven. Sexual exploration aged fifteen. All minutely catalogued. Yet what did I have for breakfast yesterday? If my theory is right even that will be forever recorded. I assume the mind is unfillable, so to speak. (Would the religious amongst us explain what happens to all these memories when we are dead and gone.)
What a serious, perplexing blog for a Saturday morning in November. Far too complex for football day. Another match beckons, Derby County versus Sheffield Wednesday. I must have seen hundreds of matches since first being taken as a child around 1948. Saw the Preston North End goalkeeper named Gooch slip on his backside trying to save a shot from Norman Neilson in the 1950's. Whoops, here we go again!


Mad Asthmatic said...

I, too sometimes wonder about my memory lapses. I can remember our phone number when I was 5 and yet struggle to remember the one I have currently.

Would comment more but have forgotten what i was going to say hee hee


Clippy Mat said...

well the way i think of it is, when we were young(er) we didn't have so much to think about, or store in the old memory banks. they were more or less empty, things rattled around in there.
and they were easily retrieved.
now, the filing cabinet which is the brain is overstuffed, retrieval systems are a bit rusty and we keep putting things in there.
it helps me to think this way.
because yesterday i was driving along and had a terrific idea for a blog. so much so that i laughed out loud and then determined that i would blog it when i got home.
unfortunately by the time i was putting my key in the front was gone!
but who knows when it will pop back in again.
p.s. can you imagine your bike still being propped up the kerb thesedays?

Grumpy Old Ken said...

Mad Asmatic
I wonder how much the brain will store. Does it blow up when its full.

Like your theory about childhood. Old Shakesspeare reckoned we start as babbling idiots and we end as babbling idiots. (Seven Ages of Mam.) What brought that on. I'm definitely losing it!

Hadriana's Treasures said...

I can still remember the number plate of a very fancy car my parents once owned. Could be that I knew, even at an early age, that it was their pride and joy...