Monday, 20 October 2008

Z scored 46 out of 50

Weeza rang at 9 o'clock this morning and was surprised that I was still in bed. I can't think why, she knows well how lazy I am and, although I'd been awake early and cuddled my husband and then read a book, I had snuggled down for another nap as I hadn't got any appointments today.

You might think I'd been feeling romantic, but the cuddle was necessary. You see, the Sage had turned on to his stomach and when he does that, he occasionally has a twitch in his leg which makes the knee flex, the lower leg rise and then thwack back on to the mattress. This is maddening, as you can imagine, and the simplest way to stop it (for it seems churlish to wake him) is to drape my limbs over his so that he can't do it. He was very pleased when he woke up and found me and I didn't tell him.

Anyway, by the time Weeza and I had chatted and I'd washed my hair and dressed and then answered a few more phone calls, the morning was half over. This afternoon, I needed to go out to one of the nearby villages, which was actually a bit further away than I'd thought, so I was a bit panty by the time I got back to the shop. Tim was amused. Then it rained. I discovered that my new jacket is, indeed entirely waterproof, but that the hood is a bit big and kept falling over my eyes so I couldn't see where I was going. I had to turn back the cuffs, as it were, for my own safety.

I'm relearning geographical locations. I have never quite got my head round all the present European countries, and am finding it quite hard, so I am starting with the easier option of brushing up on US states. I mostly do know them, but have a strange forgetfulness about a few; notably Idaho, Nebraska and Kansas. I also get Massachusetts confused with Connecticut if I'm not careful and am always surprised how far up Missouri is. Al taught them all to Ro when he was a little boy and had a whole lot of little memory tricks to help him. I never quite knew how they were devised - one example was that Californians enjoy pizza with Oregano (Oregon) on top and then there was something about a nice New Jersey and Delaware/Tupperware, but I didn't know what they were about. I did once say, when learning African countries, that I mixed up Kenya and Uganda - "Kenya's on the Koast" he replied laconically, and also pointed out that all the countries with a Z in them are in the south. He'd not have the patience to be a teacher (it's not the teaching he'd not have patience for but the recording and paperwork) but he is brilliant at it. He had Ro adding and subtracting before he was 3 years old, using flowerpots.

17 comments:

Id Entity said...

Yes, older brothers are great for stuff like that. And if you learn stuff before you're three, it doesn't feel like hard work at all.

Dave said...

I'm sure you've never been described as panty before.

Caitlin said...

Ah the old draping of the limbs trick...good one Z.

Eddie 2-Sox said...

Sometimes I think your brain is almost as badly wired as mine. Thank you.

Dandelion said...

There's nowt as strange as folk

Dave said...

'nowt so queer' it used to be, up in Yorkshire, from where half of me hails, but I suppose that word has other connotations nowadays.

Z said...

40 years ago, we schoolgirls thought that 'fast thick pants' (Kubla Khan, Coleridge) was very funny and substituted 'thick blue pants' which were the school regulation knickers.

On the rare occasions he snores, I push until he turns over, but this strange restless leg thing is best dealt with by draping and it's a nice way to wake up again.

Isn't it an indication of the wiring of Al's brain? I have very prosaic memory tricks, like remembering that Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania are north to south in alphabetical order. Nevertheless, I take any perceived similarity to your brain as a compliment, Simon.

Were you born with the other half in Lancashire, Dave? I thought you came from Kent, and that's not next to Yorkshire at all is it? Maybe I should brush up on English counties next. I think Dand learned the modern PC version of that old saying. It's not surprising, she'd hardly go down the Mac route.

Oh, and I got 50/50 after writing that post. It depends on which are asked for first - that is, if Idaho comes up early I get it right but otherwise I may try to put Nebraska or Wyoming in there.

Dave said...

My father came from Kent, my mother from Yorkshire.

I was born in Kent, and was thus not eligible to play for Yorkshire, despite my undoubted talent.

sablonneuse said...

I have enough trouble learning my way around town. Remembering American states and countries in Europe or Africa is out of my league. After all, it used to take me at least three weeks to learn my way round a school when I changed jobs!

Anonymous said...

My Mom was born in Nebraska and I was born in Idaho. My husband and my grandson was born in Washington and my daughter in California. My son was born in Germany and my granddaughter in Utah. In addition I have lived in Hawaii, Ohio, Florida and New Mexico and now, Nevada. So, I know where all of those states are as well as the connecting states of Oregon, Texas, Montana, Arizona, Oklahoma and Colorado. I know the general vicinity of most of the other states and, if given a day or two, I could probably name all of the states. Then there is Alaska, so recently famous. Therefore, I am quite impressed at your vast knowledge of foreign places. Not surprised though since experiencing your intelligence reading here as long as I have.

Z said...

Eastern Europe is really hard to learn since the breakup of the USSR. I think I have the USA nailed now, though it's not easy to place the states on a blank map, but I have no idea of most of the state capitals.

I'm looking for a good online or downloadable quiz of the English counties as I have a feeling I'd be a bit hazy on some of the ones in the middle such as Warwickshire and Hertfordshire - I know roughly where they are of course but I don't think I'd get them all right.

Z said...

And you have really got around! I've only lived in three English counties, two of which are next to each other. In the last half century the furthest I have moved is 17 miles and the least 1/2 a mile.

luckyzmom said...

I was anonymous and have no idea why blogger didn't identify me (LZM) on my comment.

You have inspired me and I intend to work on learning all of the English counties. Good luck finding the quiz.

luckyzmom said...

I've just checked and have found that there are 39 historical counties in England and 48 geographic counties. So, which is the commonly accepted?

luckyzmom said...

Ya but, you have traveled a lot.

Z said...

I don't know, there was a shake-up of counties back 35 years ago for administrative purposes, but I'd have thought that would have given fewer - for example, Cumberland and Westmorland (I think) were made into Cumbria and Rutland disappeared altogether and a whole chunk of the south-west became Avon so I need to find a map to be able to tell you. I realised it was you, but didn't say so in case the anonymity was deliberate!

luckyzmom said...

So, I will be working on the 39.