Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Sponge Brain SAS Pants

I only had to get 46 questions right.

Out of 70.

In 2 hours.

That doesn't sound too hard, does it?

The thing is, when I was younger, I was pretty spongey. Learning new stuff came easily to me. I'd read through the material a couple of times, maybe copy it out once, and remember enough to ace the test the next day.

Not anymore.

My theory is, when you're young, your brain is empty. But as you grow older, it fills up. These days, in the attic that is my brain is crammed to the rafters with books I've read, movies I've seen and transcripts of conversations I had 40 years ago.

It's the job of your hippocampus, when you're asleep, to sort through the day's events and file stuff away for future reference. I picture my hippocampus as a guy working at a recycling center, watching all this stuff come past on a conveyor belt and picking out, with rubber gloves, the stuff he figures can be used later. Only, once he selects something, he has find someplace to put it. Which, for the reasons I've explained, gets harder and harder. Sometimes, to make room for something new, he has to discard something old. Which is just that much more work.

I picture him as underpaid, burnt out, possibly drug-impaired. When it's too much trouble finding space, he just ditches the item he was supposed to put away.

This process is further complicated by the fact that all this data has to be cross-referenced, so that I can access it from other, related thoughts. For example, when I think about the play, Hamlet, I also think, Romeo and Juliet (because it's also by Shakespeare), The Turn of the Screw (because it's also a ghost story, Oedipus Rex (because he also had mother issues) and Green Eggs and Ham.

The chick who does my indexing also parties hearty.

Anyway, I managed to get 48 answers right, so I'm officially certified as a SAS programmer.

And I finally managed to dump that whole debate about the White Album.


  1. I'm also curious about the concept that our brain can remember the faces of everyone we have ever met. Depending on my diet, sobriety, or depth of daily success or failures, my dreams often place me in places where the characters are clear and distinct. Did I see them at a mall in 1991 or are they my ancestors?

    Do you like egg nog?

  2. Wait until you are MY age. I think my brain organizer takes frequent naps and when something new enters my brain, he/she/it stuffs it under its pillow to be dealt with when "the time comes". By then the something new has been creased and pummeled by my brain organizer napper until it is something entirely different from what came in.

  3. I kinda like to think of the brain as a big old file cabinet. The only problem is the older ya get the more full the files become and it just gets harder and harder to pull up the right one! Heeehehehe!

    God bless ya girl and have yourself an amazin' week!!! :o)

  4. Yay, well done! :) Mind you, 'SAS programmer' makes me imagine you sitting in a helicopter over some war zone, managing some remote-control system of soldiers...

  5. Rachel...if she wanted, she could control a batallion of robo warriors from her Blackberry while eating an organic poptart on the way to her next dental cleaning. I can imagine President Obama, chiding her from AF One..."Uh..uh..Jeanne...did you take care of that Iranian thing?"

  6. I wondered why I can't remember anything. My brain sorter is dyslexic, ADHD,and trivia obsessed. Of course she's having to work in a brain that is several, several decades old. I love your title. Hope to run into you at EBWW 2012. I'll be the one at the "bird" table Thursday taking notes on who just say Hi to me. Jody the Medicare Mom http://themedicaremom.blogspot.com

  7. SAS programer..my brain is wondering what the heck that means. Stuff Always Sticks, Sensual Area Sometimes, Someday Arrives Soon, Something About Self, Seashells AT Seashore, Scoundrels Are Surprised..LOL.. You go girl..but you were cutting it pretty close:)


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