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At one point during my girls night out last evening, I completely lost it. I ended up crying. Tears were running down my face as I tried desperately to catch my breath. The conversation that preceded my behavior went something like this:
I was talking about a place—going to a place—and Jenny said, “Wait … I think I worked there.”
“I think I did. Way back when, but I’m not sure.”
“You’re not sure you worked there?”
“I either worked there, or I had some strange dream that I worked there. I can’t remember.”
“You can’t remember if you worked at a place?”
It was at this moment that I started to cry through my laughter.
What’s so funny about it, you might ask. What’s so funny about it is that as we get older, we forget. Nora Ephron said it best in the title of her hilarious book, “I Remember Nothing.” This is starting to happen to me, and apparently to Jenny, as well.
We forget a lot of stuff.
Even the stuff we purposely do NOT want to block out. Sometimes it just happens scientifically by osmosis.
I know I’ve forgotten a lot of stuff—have meant to forget a lot of stuff. But then there’s the stuff that you can’t forget, like how to load the dishwasher or how to fold the laundry. I wish I could forget that. I wish amnesia would hit me over the head so hard that I might never remember how to clean the bird poop off the perch in our parakeets’ cage or how to scrub a toilet.
I also forget phone numbers now that our phones do all the work for us. There’s no need to memorize anything anymore with regard to numbers. Our amazing cells are tiny magicians that remember it all for us and work their magic. Just don’t get in a pinch, lose your phone, get left by the side of the road, or need to make that one call to your lawyer. You won’t be able to remember any of your contact numbers to save yourself.
On the other hand, I try hard to forget that I used to weigh 108 pounds after my first boyfriend and I broke up. He may have broken my heart, but I looked pretty damn good.
It takes a lot to forget if you worked somewhere, but this next example might even take forgetfulness to a more significant level: I was walking the streets of Annapolis and saw a guy I knew. He knew me and I knew him. We tentatively acknowledged each other. For the life of me, I don’t know who the hell he was or how I knew him. I’ve wracked my brain and have been unable to come up with the answer.
The only thing that makes me feel better about not remembering who the hell he was and how I knew him is that I suspect he couldn’t place who the hell I was either.
Honestly, I can’t wait for my next girls night out. It’s always full of laughter and there is always something I take away from it.
It’s just that sometimes I can’t remember what it was.