I’ve never had a great memory. I’ve forgotten birthdays. I’ve agreed to play cricket on the same evening that my wife and I are supposed to be having a romantic meal. And I rarely remember to charge my mobile phone, leaving me entirely unaccounted for during long weekends climbing treacherous Lakeland, Mountains, while my wife pines at home.
I think I get it from my mom. She has spent her life forgetting where she put her car keys. She told me a few months ago that she was worried about turning 74 next birthday. She was only 72.
But for the sake of my spouse’s nerves, if nothing else, I decided recently that I had to improve.
I was vaguely aware of best-selling memory improvement guru Tony Buzan and as I google’d him to see what help his books might give me, I discovered that the UK Open Memory Championship – run by Buzan’s World Memory Sports Council – was only three weeks away. Now here was a challenge. Could entering the competition and pitting my wits against the likes of reigning champion Ben Pridmore (who can memorize a pack of cards in 26 seconds) be the motivation I needed?