By Mel McConaghy
Almost half a decade ago, long before I retired, I was at the card lock in Abbotsford, fueling up, as was my routine every Saturday while I waited for my turn to load.
After I’d finished fueling and checking over my outfit, I went into the office and had a cup of coffee with Dennis, another old guy who worked there.
In the process of telling him a little tale, I had a problem remembering a fellow’s name. The resulting silence turned the conversation to memory, or the lack of it. One of our other drivers, who happened to be there at the same time, said, “Let’s face it Mel, you’re getting old and you’re losing your memory.” I stood there for a little while thinking about his statement. Could this be so? Was I losing my memory? Maybe I never had ‘it’. After some serious thought, Dennis and I came to the conclusion that we were not really losing memory. The fact is, after sixty eight to seventy years of stuffing masses of mostly useless information into our brains, it seemed only natural to have a little trouble getting it all sorted out once in a while.
In some cases, when the brain gets too full, the overflow of knowledge trickles down your spine, and accumulates around your waist.
(So don’t make fun of old guys’ waistlines, they prove that we are knowledgeable) Face it, everything that has happened to you since your birth is stored in there. All the things you have learned, all your good dreams, and all your bad dreams. The good times and bad times, and the birthdays of loved ones and relatives, near and distant. Everything that you have ever heard, seen, touched, smelled and tasted is stored in the folds of your gray matter, along with those great jokes you can’t seem to remember. All the history taught in school, the math, poetry and volumes of nonsense that you have accumulated over the years is in there, it is just a matter of getting it out.
Now, if you were to get a real hotshot computer guy, and then have him download everything that’s in your brain`s memory, (download, I learned that from a ‘Dummies’ book) you might be able to access it better on a computer. Using speech recognition, it could fill in a name, or whatever, when a memory lapse occurs. Maybe I’m out of touch, and it’s already been done, but if my ability with computers is to be used as an example, I think it could take a little time. So, after taking all these factors into consideration, I don’t feel bad that I could not remember ‘what’s his name’. However, as I was driving back to the shop about ten or fifteen minutes later, it came to me in a flash, “It’s Ray Leacock!” I hollered to anyone who might have been driving on the freeway that day. It is still all there in our memory, it just takes time to sort it out.
My Life Through a Broken Windshield by Mel McConaghy
Mel McConaghy is a retired trucker and author from Prince George, British Columbia. Mel’s tales are his views of life “through a broken windshield”. They are entertaining and humorous in a folksy style.
Visit Mel’s website at www.melmcconaghy.com