Hyperthymesia – A Newly Discovered Memory In Which People Remember Every Day Of Their Lives
I just recently read a mind boggling story on aol news.
It seems there is this guy who can remember every minute of his life from almost the beginning. I don't remember his name (though I remember reading somewhere that Marilou Henner of
"Taxi" had the gift too...one of about 7 in the world) but it hardly matters. what boggles the mind is......how much storage space in bits, bytes and megabytes does that string of recollections take? And further, how could our brains possibly hold that much info and the multiplication tables besides?
I have recently been pondering the fact that it seems unlikely that that several pounds of grey stuff in our skulls could possibly hold all of our memories plus how to do long division. I don't care how sophisticated our equipment is.........there just ain't enough room for everything in there is my contention.
I am toying with the concept that nothing much is really stored in our brain as it exists in our skull. We must have a storage source elsewhere that we can access, add to and, possibly delete from using just keywords to find the file. Nothing else makes any sense whatsoever....... I don't care how incredible our brain is supposed to be.....no way can that small gray mushy, squiggly mass hold enough chips, no matter how small God made them, to hold all the info we use. We must have a personal Google.....or Wikipedia......or perhaps a huge communal Google. Yes, yes. Seems I have read about such a thing in esoteric writings. By gum, I am becoming convinced that it must be so, especially since our brains have major work to do aside from remembering stuff. Haven't I heard that much of it is taken up with somewhat more important tasks like regulating our various cells, organs and bodily functions? The way I am seeing it, there must be a small area in the brain for stuff I call very short term memory.....like when you look up a phone number and have to remember it long enough to dial it. In my own case this area only rates a "D" grade for quality and performance ...or is it just me who has to go back and look up the number several times or else admit defeat and write it down? Anyway, aside from that area I see a section which I call Control panel. It is filled with icons like your computer desktop or perhaps a thousand "apps" buttons. When clicked upon, these take you to your files in the Cloud Computer where you can search ad infinitum for a gazillion memories or bits or chunks of information you have noted as worthy of saving.
The guy with the incredible memory of his life must have been a very obsessive compulsive type who sort of wrote each day into his diary with all the minute detail like weather and what he ate and what his mother said to him at breakfast and he carefully filed each day away in the cloud by clicking on "save". When he pushes the lifetime memories App and fills in a search key by date, his brain sends out to the cloud, grabs the diary entry for that day in all its glory and downloads it into temp storage. The rest of us are much less obsessed and only store the more special or memorable days or moments of our life in the cloud file. And I must confess that to make my theory plausible, there must be stuff that gets stored by accident rather than design.
From my own experience I would say that what I've got stored in the cloud is more than enough......maybe in some cases too much. For instance, I wish to hell I could forget the time in the 6th grade when I was feeling uncommonly devilish and found myself called upon to answer the question, "Why did the Founding Fathers choose Thomas Jefferson to write the Declaration of Independence?
To this day I remember vividly the expression of horror, disbelief and disgust on Mrs. Huckins' face when her, up till then, favorite pupil disgraced herself and fell from grace forever.
Somehow, I simply could not control myself from answering, "Because he had the best handwriting."
Sometimes memory sucks.