10 3 mins 8 yrs

I had a call from an old mate, Steve Tinsley (because that’s his name), a couple of weeks ago. This was the gist of it –

Me: Alright mate.

Tinz: Alright mate. There’s a school reunion in a fortnight. Saturday 6th December at the Rose & Crown. Class of ’86 or whenever it was.

Me: Have fun mate.

Tinz: Come on geez, you know you wanna be there.

Me: No I don’t.

Tinz: Yes you do, and I’ve been given the job of getting you there. Come on …

Etc etc. So that’s how I came to be at a school reunion back in London on Saturday night, which was fun, but a bizarre and unsettling evening at times. It was fun to get pissed with old mates I haven’t seen in a while. Years can pass but everyone slipped straight into their old roles. It’s funny how blokes can do that.

The unsettling bit was realising that my mind for faces might not be what I thought it was. A woman walked up to me all “Pete! Pete Moore! Bloody hell it’s you.” I asked her if she was one of my teachers. Nope, we were in the same class, and we were the same age. But I didn’t have a clue who she was till she told me her name, and even then it was a vague recollection. And that’s how it went on all night. I was chatting with Fiona O’Shaughnessy for ten minutes with no idea who she was, and I spent half my teenage years trying to cop a feel of her tits. I even went out with Debbie Gibson for a few months and I looked right through her.

In the end I realised I didn’t have a clue who I’d been to school with and who was just a pub punter. I can’t be bothered with pretending to recognise people, so with each “Pete, it’s you!” I mainly replied with “and you are?”

I was sure I’d recognise everyone, but I came away thinking I must be going senile.


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  1. Maybe you have late onset face blindness….brought on by the fear of remembering who your girlfriends were. πŸ™‚

    There are stories of men who wake up next to their wives and don’t even know who it is that they’re in bed with because of face blindness. Apparently, they have to memorize their wives’ nighties before going to sleep so that they know who they are with in the AM. Seriously.

  2. Patty

    What about men with that condition whose wives don;t wear nighties. What to they have to memorise ? πŸ™‚

  3. I have always been interested in the subject of memory. There are many books on the subject. One very good recent one was this one

    Moonwalking with Einstein recounts Joshua Foer’s yearlong quest to improve his memory under the tutelage of top “mental athletes.” He draws on cutting-edge research, a surprising cultural history of remembering, and venerable tricks of the mentalist’s trade to transform our understanding of human memory. From the United States Memory Championship to deep within the author’s own mind, this is an electrifying work of journalism that reminds us that, in every way that matters, we are the sum of our memories.

    There are a few people in the world who can remember every day of their lives. One of them is Marilu Henner, the actress who was in the ” Taxi ” comedy series. You can ask her what she had for lunch or what the weather was like on July 15, 1995 and she can tell you.

    See this


    She didn’t discuss this ability for years, because she thought that everyone had the ability, and that it wasn’t worthy of discussion.

  4. Pete, are you naturally shy? Your loss of memory could be the “deer in the headlights” effect suffered by shy people.

  5. iluvni –

    Still small and perky from what I could tell.

    Patty –

    I’m not shy at all. Wherever I am I’m relaxed and easy going. I always thought I had a memory for faces (whereas I’m terrible with names), but it didn’t look like that on Saturday. Maybe we’ve all aged more than I expected. When I look into a mirror I see my handsome 18 year old self looking back, but I haven’t been 18 since 1988. I might have been expecting to see younger faces, but some of them have not aged well.

  6. “I might have been expecting to see younger faces, but some of them have not aged well.”

    blaming the victims now???

    πŸ™‚ just kidding you, Pete.

    everyone forgets stuff as the years pass. It is what it is and it means nothing. you sound like you were fairly indifferent about the reunion – so don’t be surprised that your memory for faces fell asleep on you. You didn’t want to be there and your subconscious knew that.

    Personally, I abhor reunions. I like to look forward, not backwards.

  7. S’funny, Pete. Recently, several of my old classmates were elected into the town-where-we-grew-up sports-hall-of-fame. All they could remember in any sort of detail was a ‘save’ they made in football, basketball, or baseball. I am not kidding when I say they talked for hours about amaaaaazzzzing moves they made many, many years ago. I’m with Patty…live for today!

  8. oh but I don’t abhor reunions…they are funny as hell for the first 2 hours and the second two are boring as hell…speaking of “Hell” I went to Hell, Cayman last week…a long way to go and not much to see but the snorkeling is phenom!

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