Remembering differently…

Posted by Doc
Mar 29 2009

…doesn’t imply anything about right or wrong.

How many times have you gotten into the ping-pong game of “Who remembers it right?”

“I know I remember it right because…”

“But I know I remember it right because…”

Unless you have a time machine, and can go back together and record whatever event you’re talking about, it becomes a pointless discussion.

What is really important?  That is, what am I trying to prove beyond that I remember something right?

Not to forget that there’s the solitaire version of the game.  It goes like this:

“I was on my way to work on Tuesday… no, wait, it was Wednesday… no, Tuesday… maybe it was Monday…”

Why do we care? Why is it important that – in telling my story – I get the day of the week right?

Perhaps because I fear that (a) you will catch me in an incorrect statement and, therefore, (b) that will generally downgrade my credibility, and (c) I will have less value in the world.

Am I really being tested and measured and evaluated all the time?

Well, to a certain extent, yes I am.

Okay – and does it matter?

Ah! Hmm… No, I don’t think it does.

Well, sure, it matters that people I live with and work with and deal with believe that I’m an honest person.

But in most cases, these trivialities only get in the way. When I tell you my heart attack story, do you care whether I had my heart attack on a Sunday or a Monday or a Tuesday? Nope. And yet I’m likely to get caught up in getting it right, because I believe that in our culture getting it right is highly valued.

I believe that worrying about getting the minutiae right frequently gets in the way of communicating the larger, more important stuff.

Granted that if I get most of the details wrong, my listener may deprecate everything else I have to say.

So let’s get back to the original question.

I think that when you get into an argument/disagreement about who remembers what correctly, you should ask yourself “what’s really important here?”

2 Responses

  1. Twitter Comment

    Its important to know when you’re in a pissing match and more important to get out of it quickly. -> [link to post] (one way to this!)

    – Posted using Chat Catcher

  2. Tiki says:

    I read it twice! submitted it to
    hopefully they’ll post for others to read and follow

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