Sunday, 1 January 2012

Pythagoras Theory and other things I've forgotten

This may be a short post, not because there aren't many things I have forgotten. It's more that I have forgotten what I have forgotten. Yesterday I strangely remembered forgetting Pythagoras Theory.

I used to be good at maths. My dad was a mathematician and a few years ago I even played Ada Lovelace (look her up) in an interactive production which meant learning more mathematics than I'd known before.

But many more years ago, long before diagnosis (BDX), I was working on a project involving an outdoor performance with a train structure that would convert into a cake (don't ask). To make the slices of cake I was working with triangles and needed to use Pythagoras Theory for the dimensions. I couldn't remember it and, in those ancient days, did not have use of Google so couldn't find this:

Having inexplicably remembered my Pythagorean lapse yesterday, I realised I still couldn't remember the straightforward equation a2 + b2 = c2 so I looked it up.  I recognised and understood it. Today, again I couldn't remember it. I also couldn't remember the Spanish for garlic. This is not related except that I needed to know the latter to communicate in an Austrian restaurant.

Again this was BDX. It was a Valentine's weekend surprise. I like to know at least some words in a language before visiting another country.  I didn't expect to be in a German speaking country. I hadn't brushed up on my vocabulary. The waitress spoke no English, I didn't recognise all the German words on the menu so we were talking in Spanish. As a vegetarian in a big meat eating country, I wanted to check what I could eat. I had never learnt the word knoblauch for my German 'O' Level but I did learn ajo whilst doing Spanish 'O' and/or 'A' Level.  I didn't remember ajo when the waitress said it. She had to resort to bringing a head of garlic out from the kitchen to show me. Again today I couldn't remember either word. I think both of those lapses in memory are entirely forgiveable and, even without my faulty scrambled eggs, quite understandable.

However, today I also struggled to remember the name of the actress I was assigned during a New Years Eve party last night. I could remember many of the eliminating questions I had asked, and the yes/no answers I got but not the name. It was like playing the game again. On my own. And then I got the name back. Kate Winslett. One of the other guests had said it was highly appropriate for me to be given that person to be because the dress I was wearing was like one she would suit. The red dress. I think it was a compliment. I silently applauded myself for remembering Kate.

One of my early MS relapse symptoms (not that I knew it at the time) was completely forgetting the well used, familiar pin number for my ATM card. I know it now and I'm not telling you. No, it's not my birthday though that is in less then two weeks' time - a gentle hint for anyone who knows me!

I think I am now used to forgetting things. I forgot how I had met three of the other guests at last night's party. I had shared two long car journeys with the family just a few months ago. It didn't particularly matter that I couldn't remember this. Nor is it important that I don't know Pythagoras Theory or the Spanish for garlic. But for 2012, I would like to remember. Remember what? I don't know. I've forgotten.

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