Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Today while I was typing I made so many typos that I finally called Lilly in to the room to test me for a stroke. “Hey, when I smile do both sides of my mouth go up?” Yes she confirmed. “Tell me to raise my arms.” She gave the command and I raised both my arms. I hoped. Yes, she nodded, I really did raise both arms.
Whew! Part of the reason I worry I might be having a stroke is because my mind does seem to be going a bit. I think it’s because I’m in the “foggy years” of pre/menopause. At least I hope that’s what’s going on because if this is permanent it sucks.
My friend, umm, what’s her name, uh we went to high school and I saw her last summer. Her name starts with an A and she used to live on Eight Mile and she had to miss our Halloween party senior year because she had an emergency appendectomy and she dated Bob K., you know, umm her name is, umm, Andrea. That’s it. Andrea. I saw her for a mini-reunion last summer and she was telling us that she takes some pretty strong medication for arthritis with some unpleasant side-effects. She went to her doctor and said, “Hey this medicine is making my hair fall out and I can’t remember words for you know, stuff.”
The doctor nodded and said, “Well the medicine can make your hair fall out but it doesn’t give you problems with word retrieval. That’s your age. Studies show this peaks for women between about 49 and 51.”
What a relief. Along with the typos and the forgetfulness and the word retrieval this stuff can get worrisome. I’m happy to blame it on a phase that will pass.
For some reason I have a lot of trouble with the word “pantry”. I say to the kids, “Can you put this peanut butter in the um, you know it’s like a shed but it has food,” and finally one of them rolls his or her eyes and says, “Pantry, mom, pantry. You know this, you can do it,” they say like they’re trying to rehab a stroke victim, which I am not, as I proved earlier. Is that burned toast I smell?
I was talking about all this with my church lady friends today as we cleaned the kitchen after serving the Glenview clergy luncheon. (I totally just dropped that in there so you would be somewhat impressed with my goodness.) Anyhoo, I mentioned this word retrieval thing to my friends who are all around my age and my friend, umm, her name is, well it starts with an L and she lives over on that street next to mine and she got her MBA at Wharton. Now wait a minute, how is it I can remember she got her MBA at Wharton and I can’t remember her name is Laura when I want to? Well she mentioned that she heard this word retrieval thing is worst with those words that mean, umm, they mean something like a person, place, or thing,
“Noun?” I supplied.
“Yeah, that’s it.”
So how weird is that? I mean we never forget the word “it” or “run” or “serendipitous” but just try to remember “pantry” or the name of someone I’ve known for years and forget it.
In the meantime when I run into you at Dominick’s and it’s clear I don’t remember your name (and you apparently can’t remember mine, thank God) please don’t be offended. I DO remember that we were in book club together and that one time you brought the most awesome artichoke dip and your husband is kind of hot and works in advertising though I heard he was laid off and your kids are big jocks and you live over on the other side of town in that really nice house and you added the kitchen on a few years back and it’s got a great granite island and when Lilly was sick you brought us chicken and rice (can I have the recipe?) and once when we made Margaritas you forgot to put the top on the blender and it blew all over my kitchen.
I remember all of this.
I just can’t remember your name.


  1. Hahaha, this is another classic!

    By the way, you had to clean the whole kitchen after serving the Glenview clergy luncheon? It must have been a wilder party than the name suggests.

  2. Try remembering 150 student names! I don't do names in Spanish anymore!

  3. It's ok! I'm 27 but I have the same problem too I think since I was in highschool. Sometimes I think it's because I drink too much coffee x_x

  4. That is funny. I never had that problem. Maybe it is a girl thing.

  5. If this problem peaks when we are ages 49 to 51, does that mean we'll start getting better when we are 52?

  6. I was going to say something, but I can's remember what. I wish it were just a girl thing...