ON BEING STUPID

ON BEING STUPID

I am discovering (at my advancing age!) that it is undeniably true that weaknesses and deficiencies you have had all your life but lived with and concealed tolerably well, get worse. I have many deficiencies.

I remember writing in my diary which begins in 1986 that if ever it fell into the hands of someone researching the customs and mores of our times, they should pay scant regard to the dates given for they were very unreliable. I can just about be depended on to get the year right. It seems to me that in the great scheme of things it makes very little difference whether things happened on a Wednesday or Thursday. I was always morbidly afraid of booking someone ‘s travel arrangements on the wrong day, but I had a colleague who was meticulous in her planning and she checked them for me and between the two of us we made no mistakes. I did any calculations she had to do – she couldn’t do anything vaguely mathematical whereas I had no difficulties in that area.

It does make a difference sometimes when exactly a thing was said or done – in the fields for example of law enforcement, medicine or sport it can make an enormous difference. These days I don’t seem to be able to send out an invitation without getting the date wrong.

I always had a superb memory for faces and a completely useless one for names. I don’t particularly want to know someone’s name. I can ask for it if I decide I’d like to see them again and their face has been recorded in my mental memory and will be accessible to me in 20 years or more, even if I saw them only once. I will also have formed a judgement of their character which in my experience is rarely wrong (though one has to be prepared to acknowledge that as a possibility.) I also absolutely hate wearing a name badge – I don’t want you to call me Anne if I’ve just met you – and I always ‘lose’ it at the earliest opportunity. Rory, working in a restaurant at the airport

used to wear someone else’s and would be particularly pleased if he found one that said Mohamed or even Fatima.

I’m not good at differentiating between left and right (although I am mildly ambidextrous). And I’ve come to the conclusion that the map in my head is upside down, for whenever there is doubt about whether one should turn left or right; you should at any rate go in the opposite direction of what I think, since I am almost invariably wrong. I never have any idea in which direction North is.

Fortunately my travelling companion in life is not only a superb logistics man and planner par excellence – and can ditch the plan and formulate another if necessary which often such people cannot do; he has maps in his head that are as miraculous as my collection of faces. He will remember the layout of a town even if he only visited it once 30 years ago. He also has an instinct for finding the restaurant area of an unknown town, and nobody can find toilets faster than him.

But he has been known to say to me, For a supposedly clever woman, you’re remarkably stupid at times. I have to agree with him.

About adhocannie
I am a good natured woman with a long memory and a swift tongue. I like loooking at things and thinking about them. Also food, clothes, travel, reading, sewing. I try to see the ridiculous in things, but sobriety of reflection keeps edgting in. I have husband, children, grandchildren, friends... I feel rich in things that matter. I am a happy exile. I like writing. I do not like talking about me (though I do.). You willl be much more interesting.

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