Friday, 3 July 2015

The Persistence of Memory

We all know how Dali put it, probably making ironic comments or raising profound questions about the mutability and erodibility of Time, or not, you decide.  But the phrase popped into my mind from quite another direction, that of tomato protection.

Z and I had been discussing and comparing notes about memory: things like ‘have I cleaned my teeth?’, through ‘did I have a shower?’, all the way to ‘who are you, again?’  We concluded (I think, I can’t remember exactly and I’m sure she’ll correct me if I’m wrong, ha) that if one’s memory is indeed failing, one will by definition be the last person to know; and that it might therefore be incumbent on others to gently point it out. 

Anyway, after Z had left, I went out to water the tomatoes, and noticed that some perverse beast (almost certainly a blackbird, though I’ve never caught him at it) had once again been digging deep holes in the compost in the planter, all around the fledgling plants.  I remembered (I did!) that the other day, when I’d been down to the rarely-visited shed to get a rake to gather up the early dropping apples, I’d noticed what looked like some chicken wire lurking beneath the undergrowth.  That might do, I thought.

So I dragged it out, and guess what, it had been carefully cut to size and shape for the sole, obvious purpose of laying it across tomato plants, in this planter, to protect them from marauding blackbirds.   Try as I may, I have absolutely no memory of doing that, although it can’t have been more than ten years ago.  I don’t know whether to be pleased or disturbed by this.


  1. Might someone else have done it for you?

    Slightly worrying, that we've reached the age for animated discussion about memory, as opposed to memories.

  2. Yes, it's a bit like Rog's famous distinction between 'falling over' and 'having a fall'.

  3. Well, I can't remember what Z and I talked about and that was over three days! It was interesting I think, or maybe not for Z, but I enjoyed myself.
    The brownies were good weren't they?!

  4. Yes, Z is definitely Akela!

  5. Yeah, awright, she's a brownie owl too!