Sunday, August 30, 2009


I downloaded this song from iTunes this week:

I am amazed that I still know all the words - what - 30 years later? I'm fascinated by the fact that there is a place in my brain where the lyrics to this song reside. There are neurons buried somewhere in that soft gray mass in my head, which have been so deeply imprinted by this song that even though I rarely access the memory, it is still there in full. A cascade of synapses fire, sleepy neural pathways awaken and these silly lyrics pour out of my mouth. I am in awe of that power.

But I am also mystified by how variable and unreliable memory can be. Beth just told me about the time that she came to visit me while I was at college in New York. I have absolutely NO memory of that. NONE. She says that she has pictures of me in my dorm room. I remember my dorm room, but don't remember Beth ever being there. She remembers that we went sightseeing together and saw the Empire State Building. If you asked me if I had ever been to the Empire State Building, I would have told you no. Even though Beth filled in some of the details of her visit, I can not conjure up a single thread of a memory about it.

So strange. So random. I suppose every memory is a miracle.

I hope when I am 96 and sitting in my nursing home chair, that I bust out this song and all the staff look at me funny. (And then probably increase my meds.)

Said a hip, hop, hippy to the hippy to hip hip a-hoppin' you don't stop rockin' to the bang bang boogie said up jump the boogie to the rhythm of the boogie-bee.

1 comment:

Bethany said...

oh my gosh, this just gave me the biggest smile ever. I was enjoying your writing and remembering the song, thought, kind of half smiled at your nursing home comment, and the old woman picture, but then when you finished it off with the actual song I got the biggest smile ever (I'm at work or I would've laughed out loud). You crack me up babeeeeeeeeeeee. I remember the words too, but also remember our fun times together which obviously traumatized (or bored) you so much you had to repress the memories.