On Friday night I went to the pub with some of the lovely ladies I run with at the weekend. Amongst other things, a few of us discussed the fact that we find it really hard to remember people’s names. Being particularly useless I took a look around to realise that I only knew the names of about 5 of the 20 or so running ladies and had already forgotten the names of two out of three husbands I’d been introduced to in the last thirty minutes.
Last night I went to a party. (I know. Get me and my sudden social life!) It was gorgeous godson’s dads 40th. I’ve met lots of gorgeous godson’s mum and dads friends before, but only at parties -I don’t know any of them well. So when I arrived I stuck with gorgeous godsons aunt who is lovely, and then appointed myself photographer, so I had to move around a bit and smile and nod (There was a brilliant live band, but they were sooo loud it didn’t really allow for small talk so smiling, nodding and waving the camera in an ‘I’m going to take a photo, could you pose appropriately’ way worked quite well).
Later on I found myself partially hiding behind a curtain, people watching (I love being sober and watching people who are brilliant dancers and people who have had a couple of drinks and think they are brilliant dancers. I am under no illusions here -I fall into the latter category occasionally….)
So there I was, tapping my foot from behind the curtain and a lady I knew I know walked past. She was a lady I’d spent most of a previous party with, we had chatted enough that we could do a proper conversation now rather than just awkward introductions! I remembered she lived up North somewhere, came down occaisionally, had two kids, went to uni with gorgeous godsons mum or dad….I was on a roll here!
‘I’d not realised it was you! How are you?’
<a bit of cheek kissing>
‘Hello, I’m good thank you. You?’
And as I struggled to remember the names of her kids…or actually just the genders would have done, she said:
‘I’ve not seen you running for a while. Which days are you going on now?’
So it turned out that this lady was not the lady I was utterly convinced she was, but in a room where I didn’t know many people at all, I did know her. Apparently we spent a lot of the running Christmas party chatting together. I didn’t know whether to give myself a pat on the back for actually recognising a face or just to make a pact with myself to stay behind curtains in future… Either way, it was nice to have two nights to chat to new people whose names I’ve forgotten already and people whose names I will never remember. It’s nothing personal; I’m just useless. I’ll say sorry now for calling you ‘sweetheart’ if we ever meet again :o)
No experts, but we have a feeling that people who belong to the Masons have a particular handshake which is recognisable to like minded members. So what about developing a commonly recognised handshake (and maybe a special ‘five times each side’ for the cheek kissing) for all of us who have the total inability to remember names!! Yes we appreciate it has a fundamental flaw, the less memory challenged population won’t pick up on the nuance, but it could prevent the odd panicky moment or two. It’s either that or a tattoo on the forehead.
I think that is a blimin’ genius idea! :oD