I remember a time when I used to be able to read a book straight through, whether it was fiction or for a class. Now I find myself rereading two and three times the same paragraphs because my mind has wandered. Unless the book has gripped me from the beginning, I find it difficult now to become mesmerized midway through. But I’ve noticed this can happen to me with a book, a magazine article, newspaper, bus advertisement, food label. In meetings at work, I stare absentmindedly, doodling when I should be taking notes. I look out the window at the water and become transfixed by…nothingness. I stare at people as though they are speaking a foreign language. And have two heads. And are on a pogo stick. With ice cream. And a baby koala. And then I spend the remainder of the meeting trying not to laugh in their face because the koala has pooped on their arm. See? Something is amiss in my upstairs compartment.
Interestingly, though, I can watch a movie and remember random lines years later. I can recall conversations verbatim that I had 20 years ago (note to you: don’t lie; I’ll remember). Although my short-term memory sucks lately, my long term memory remains quite formidable. But short term is what I need to utilize right now, particularly at work. I’m learning things that make me say huh way too much. The fact that I vacillate between wanting to yell Inconceivable! in my Vizzini voice when I don’t understand something and making the signal for a touchdown at a meeting’s end are testaments to my…well, I don’t know. My weirdness? My silliness? My inability to be serious in serious situations? Probably all of those. And now of course I’m giggling because the koala just bit you.