Monday, March 21, 2005

Memory Flash Dance - Part 1

It's a very cool trick of the brain, those sudden memory flashes you get, so kindly triggered by the senses. Thankfully my Good memories far out way the Bad so more often than not these memory flashes are quite pleasant. (And if there is a more technical term for this I have no idea what it is.)

Sometimes a smell or a sound, or even a combination of the two, triggers a memory and I'm transported back in time. Sort of like a poor man's time machine.

Sometimes no one particular memory is triggered, just the feelings that I had back when the memory formed.

And sometimes nothing is triggered at all, I just get the strangest damn sense of déjà vu, like there's a memory somewhere in my brain that's been erased - poorly erased, because little electrons of the memory still exists, so I have a sense that there's something to remember. I just can't quite remember what I should be remembering. Does that make sense? Has that happened to anyone else? Surely I can't be the only one. Because I've had that sense of the vu several times before.

Two weekends ago I was up visiting family and friends and going to a bridal shower. On Saturday my dad was running a swim meet at my old high school so I thought I'd stop by and say hi, check out the Old Stomping Ground and do a little walk down Memory Lane. I was a competitive swimmer from the age of 6 up until I was 20, so most evenings of my young life were spent in a pool. And most weekends were spent out of town racing in another team's pool. In high school it was pretty much the same thing, only I practiced in a different pool (my club team practiced in the rival high school's pool). And this time there was this thing called *gasp* morning practice! Eek!

Anyways, I hadn't been back to my old high school in years. The last time was for a water polo reunion game, and that was... what?... five or six years ago? Wow. Really? That long? Gah! I'm getting old.

So anyway, it had been awhile since I'd been back to the spot of all my high school glory *ahem*. And as I was walking up to the pool, past the gate that locked us in during school hours, past the gym and the handball courts where the baton twirlers and cheerleaders used to practice, past the spot where some bitch threw her cookie at a friend of mine freshman/sophomore year, I smelled that smell that I'll never forget for the rest of my life. It's a homey sort of smell, one that warms this former swimmer's insides with the warm fuzziness of happy memories. It's a combination of chlorinated water and the morning sun heating up the concrete, the grass, and the sun-block-lathered bodies of swimmers. It's the smell of a morning swim meet, and god how I missed it.

My best friend, who practiced and competed right along side me, was with me that Saturday morning and she too had the same sort of nasal awareness I did. And at the same time too. As we got closer to the pool we took a deep breath, breathed in that wonderful smell of a chlorinated pool, breathed it out in a sigh and smiled at each other. A knowing smile.

We commented on how the smell brought us back to 'the good old days', but when I brought up the cookie throwing incident, she had no idea what I was talking about. And I'm 98% sure she was the friend I remember being the target of the cookie throwing. I remember thinking it was mean, as well as a little funny, but only in a 'How lame is that! She threw a cookie!' sort of way. I remember my friend was furious, and rightly so, because some bitch threw something at her! How can my best friend not remember that?

Poor thing, it was so traumatic she's blocked it from her mind. :)


So many good memories. Heh heh heh.

Other highlights of that Saturday include:

- seeing one of my old high school swim coaches (who looks exactly the same as she did seven or so years ago!)

- hearing the hilariously lovely and yet oh so snide way my BBBF said the name Patterson (one of our old coaches *snicker*)

- my BBBF getting dissed by the rival high school swim coaches who coached back when we were in high school. HAHAHAHA. (sorry Beck, but that still cracks me up!!!)

- getting in some much needed and much treasured quality girl talk time with the BBBF at the hair salon after she twisted my arm into going there. ("you want to go get your hair cut?" "okay.")

- eating McDonald's at my parent's house where the BBBF consulted my newly acquired That's So Raven Happy Meal Toy, the Psychic Cell Phone. I asked it all the important questions in my life. ("when my brother moves to Las Vegas will his life expectancy drop?" "totally.")

- hanging out with my parents and an aunt and uncle. The five of us went out to dinner (where I discovered mushrooms that I actually like - probably because they were fried little poppers!) and then we went back to my parent's house and played some card games. For 'moola'. We played three games and I won the last two, which meant I won a little over two bucks in dimes. Score! While I won a bunch of dimes, I lost the right to whine say 'I never win at this game!'


  1. Zoink here, aka BBBF to the Awesome Loony one: ok, a couple of things...let me say in my defense, that I was trying to be nice and not completely blow those a-holes off, like I wanted to & then they sat there like the idiots they are and just starred at me when I kindly said 'hello'...bunch of jerks. I honestly don't remember the cookie incident, I blame my advanced age for this! And you forgot the wintergreen in the smell-memory triggering equation. The wintergreen is the icing on the cake! :P

  2. first of all, in your defense i should have explained their a-holines (but i need a whole other post for that long a list)

    and how could i have forgoten the wintergreen!? the secret weapon. :)