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emmy [AT] curious-notions {dot} net
January 2023
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Another reason my ears suck

I don’t know why but my brain is convinced that the song White Winter Hymnal by Fleet Foxes is not new. I heard it and went oh wow, I remember listening to that song! Except I couldn’t have heard it years ago on one of the summer vacations we used to take because supposedly it’s new. I say supposedly because I SWEAR TO YOU I’ve heard that song years and years ago. This is not the first time my brain has done this to me. The song Disenchanted by My Chemical Romance? Again. I would have testified that it was a cover when I heard it. Because for all that I believed Gerard Way hadn’t sung it before, the SONG sounded like something I’d already heard.

I really hate it when this happens. I cannot even tell you how much it bothers me. I end up spending hours googling and making family listen to the songs going, “Doesn’t that sound like something else?” and “Who originally sang that?” The problem I think is that maybe the guitars or the drums or something or some combinations of something is similar enough to some other song and it turns out that one thing is how I associate the song.

I don’t store entire things in my memory. I usually distill things down or remember one specific piece of a thing in my brain. A Tale of Two Cities by Dickens? There’s this one scene where Sydney Carton and Charles Darnay are standing in a street or walking down a street. I had to go look their names up. I cannot remember whether they were walking down the street or just standing in it. My feeling is that Sydney had just left Lucie’s house? Maybe Charles and Sydney had? Or maybe they were just talking about her? I believe they were outside a house. I cannot tell you what they talked about except that Lucie was mentioned. That scene however is how I remember the whole book. The picture of the two of them in front of a house talking about something. It’s sad and subtle and about a girl. I could have told you the basic plot. I would have had to not use names because obviously I didn’t remember them. That’s how my brain works. It strips out a lot of detail except usually a thing or two and hooks the rest of the impressions and memories onto those few things. I have a few other things for Tale of Two Cities. Mme Defarge knitting outside the shop (which now I can’t remember if it’s actually in the book or was an illustration I saw). The end of the story where I think again Sydney and the spy are talking before the guilliotine.

Usually with stories/novels though I can keep them straight enough. I have read a book and had it hit that feeling of “oh I’ve read this before” and either found an already read copy of the book in a box or found the other book that had certain similarities in plot or characterization that caused the deja vu.

Irritatingly and maddeningly, music just torments me.