I had a friend come into town for a few days. On one of the nights that she was here she and another of our friends who resides in Orange County decided they were going to go out in Hollywood. I unfortunately had another commitment that I couldn’t get out of and couldn’t join them. Halfway through the night they called completely lost, trying to find a bar/club– in all fairness this place is a little hidden. They had the address, but couldn’t find it anywhere. I asked them what they were near and then they told me. I knew they’d gone too far because I happened to know the address of one of the places they’d just driven past, The Key Club. I then told them they needed to head back in the opposite direction and gave them some other landmarks along with the addresses so they’d know what their destination was near. They only had to call me back for re-directions once more and eventually they got to the place they were looking for and had a good time.
The next morning we all went to breakfast and I was asked how on earth I remembered those addresses. I actually have a pretty good memory, but before I could explain how I recalled those addresses my good friend shrieked to our other friend “Oh my god! Has Siria ever told you about how she remembers things by what she outfit she was wearing?!!! She remembers everything! Siria tell her!!!” This may sound weird, but this is true sort of, and if you are good friends with me then you know this already. If you aren’t, I’ll explain the outfit thing in a minute.
Everyone has their own memory tricks and perhaps you use mnemonic devices like acronyms or rhymes? Mine is a little different, but I’m sure just as common. So before you start thinking that I have Savant syndrome (think Rain Man) my ability to recall something is almost usually only as good as my ability to visualize it, and usually that serves me well as I have a pretty good memory.
For example the way I recalled the Key Club address wasn’t very complicated. We put shows on there on a monthly basis for a little over two years, so I constantly had to give that address out. However, the way I recall it still is by either visualizing an old flier advertising a show there or an email blast that had the address on it. Most of the clubs ( Three Clubs, Lava Lounge, The Echo, Safari Sams, Spaceland, Zen Sushi, etc.) that we put shows on at I can remember the addresses to in this manner. El Cid was a little harder for me for some reason, but one day I came across a photo of a friend that was taken during one of our shows and right above his head is a close-up of the address, so after that anytime I needed to recall that address I just visualized that photo.
I remember on long (or even short ones sometimes) car trips, I used to try to memorize license plates of the vehicles on the road. (more…)