2013-11-21 / Lifestyles

Jest for Fun

Lois A. Corcoran Lois A. Corcoran After encouraging everyone and my brother to record their memoirs, it dawned on me that I should write mine. This epiphany struck last month, and I’ve been jotting down stories with a vengeance ever since.

Sure, I’ll need to make it a Large Print Edition, but what a hoot it will be to read. Trouble is, my memory leaves much to be desired. Vast portions of my half century on earth seem to have vanished without a trace. You’d swear I had lifelong amnesia. To help clear the cobwebs, I dusted off my high school yearbook. Pictures of marching band and working on the class newspaper barely rang a bell. I do, however, recall my status as a geek, which in the years before computers meant nerd or dork, the lowliest of classmates.

I’m also tapping into other people’s noggins in order to jog mine. Mom may be in her 80s, but her powers of recall are sharp as cheddar cheese. And since she enjoys reminiscing, our sessions benefit both of us. My low-tech cassette tape recorder hums quietly as it captures escapades from long ago.

I also pried into the mind of Warren, a former grade school chum, whose recall blew me away. Without hesitation, he rattled off names of teachers and classmates and stories about each one. He knew all of their nicknames and how they earned them.

And he described how a group of us held play practice at my house. He saw it only once, some 45 years ago, but accurately described the floorplan.

“How do you remember all this stuff?” I asked. Turns out he’s a walking advertisement for the agedefying, memory-enhancing products he sells. Remind me to order a supply.

I plan to scan old issues of the local newspaper on microfilm at the library and track down former co-workers from the hundred and one jobs I’ve held. Each new tidbit I uncover will shine more light on the person I used to be. Digging up these long-buried memories is not always flattering, of course. The kid and young woman emerging from the ruins seem, at times, self-centered. They both make a good argument for selective memory.

Still, I’m exhuming them from the dirt, brushing them off, and ushering them into the present. And when my long-awaited life story is done, I’ll call it “Memoirs of a Geek”.

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