They say with age comes wisdom. I’m not so sure I believe that. You see, I’m not exactly a spring chicken so you’d think I’d be pretty smart by now, wouldn’t you? There’s no doubt I’ve learned stuff along the way that’s helped me navigate through life. But in some areas I’m still quite lacking. And for that I blame my poor memory. How can I acquire this wisdom if my memory is on strike?
For instance, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve misplaced my keys. When I walk into the house, I should have a routine where I put them, don’t you think? Sounds reasonable to me. If I had a routine it would go like this: place the keys in a bowl on the counter. How hard is that? Apparently very.
My mind is like a game of leap frog. It jumps from one thing to another. So by the time I exit the car, walk to the door, open it and walk in, I’m already on to another thought. I think I’ll make myself a grilled cheese sandwich then water the annuals. Oh, and I suppose I should fertilize while I’m at it. And so it goes…
Any conscious thought about keys became lost within the 20-foot span it took me to get into the house. Poof!
I drive my coworker, Susan, nuts with this. She’s organized and possesses enough wisdom not to continually misplace things. Susan never loses her keys or anything else. So when we’re out trapping feral community cats for spay/neuter and I place my keys, for example, on the hood of the SUV or in the grass next to a trap, she often goes behind me collecting what I’ve randomly tossed and places it where it belongs.
Then, once I’ve realized I can’t find my keys, cell phone, pen, or whatever item I’ve laid somewhere, I turn to Susan who hands said item to me with a crooked little smile. She doesn’t need to say a word. The look in her eyes says it all: here you go, my idiot friend. You absentmindedly placed these where you’d never find them again. What would you do without me? Answer: spend hours searching.
They also say you learn from your mistakes. I’m beginning to think they don’t know me very well. You see, I make all kinds of mistakes pretty much every day, even repeating the same ones. Who does that? Obviously I’m either oblivious to the lessons I should be learning or I’m simply dense. I vote for oblivious.Take what happened a few months ago. I removed a pot from the stove but didn’t turn off the burner. I got distracted and walked away. It was that simple. I then headed out for the day but thankfully had to run right back inside to grab sunglasses I’d left on my desk (again). It was then that I noticed the flame. A catastrophe was averted (by luck) but I have no doubt I will one day have a repeat performance. That’s why I keep the fire department on speed dial.These are more mistakes from which I have yet to learn:
Not putting tennis balls in my bag before driving off for the club. I’ve turned around in the driveway of my neighbor’s house so many times I think she’s wondering if I’m getting her home confused with mine.
I keep eating at Chipotle even though I resemble a blowfish the next day (too much sodium in the Sofritas).
When I’m in a hurry I sometimes wash whites with colors but am always surprised when the whites turn pink.
I’m not consistent with doing sit ups then lament why I look 5 months pregnant.
I don’t faithfully rotate my tires, yet still complain when the tread wears unevenly.
These are all things a little wisdom would cure.
Now don’t get me wrong; sometimes I do learn from my mistakes. I know you’re waiting for examples, aren’t you? Well, at the moment nothing’s coming to mind and I must say the pressure you’re putting on me isn’t helping. Wait! I have one…
I’m currently learning new strategies to help keep my train of thought, thereby lessening mistakes I repeatedly make. I do believe it’s working because I already feel more focused.
Hold on, what were we talking about again?
(I’m in the desert so I reprinted this post from 2013, which sadly, is still relevant today.)