Sunday, 6 January 2008

That's gonna really bug me....

You know that feeling when inability to recall some random piece of trivia threatens to drive you mad....when you can't concentrate on anything else until you find out the answer to that random question that some random conversation threw up?

The answer is always on the tip of your tongue, but your brain can't quite find it.

Of course you do. It happened to all of us at least once.

It can happen at any time. You're at work talking to some colleagues over a tepid cup of vending-machine coffee. The conversation drifts to 80s kids tv shows (this is almost inevitable for people between 25 and 35).

Soon enough, it meanders over to Thundercats. Happy days eh, sitting on the sofa after a day at school, then that rocking theme tune pumps from the tv directly into the pleasure centres of your young brain.....feel the magic, hear the roar....Thundercats are loose!

And that Cheetarah....she must have been the "Thundercat's 'ho'" from the theme song.

Mumm-ra was cool, able to change from bandaged mummy to some bizarre smurf-skinned psychotic WWF wannabe just by shouting out that he was Mumm-Ra...the ever LIVIIIIIING!

But he didn't have to fight all the Thundercats alone of course, that would be unfair. He had some henchmen, lead by an humanoid frog called Slithe. Another was called Monkian.

But what was that third one know, the reddish one, kinda looked like a humanoid rat? Ohshit

You can picture him, so can your colleagues, but for the life of you, you can't get his name out of the dusty backroom of your mind. It drives you mad, and for the rest of the day, you're almost oblivious to your surroundings as you run the question through your head again and again. And again. You ask around the office, but no joy.

Later, once you're home, you phone Dave. Dave will know. He loved Thundercats, and he's great in pub quizzes. But Dave doesn't know either, and now he's infected with the bug too...another victim who won't be able to sleep until the name of that mystery Thundercats villain is dredged up from the depths of someone's 80s memories.

It can drag on for weeks. Productivity at work begins to suffer. Your girlfriend is always asking why you're so withdrawn and irritable lately. But you can't admit the sounds silly when you say it out loud....what would she think of you if she knew the reason you'd been borderline psychotic for the last fortnight was that you couldn't remember the name of the third mutant in an 80s kids tv show?

Eventually, you're down the pub with some mates and again, inevitably, the conversation drifts to Thundercats. You mention that you've not slept in weeks 'cos not knowing the name of that damn character has been bugging you, gnawing at your mind until it's in tatters.

"That was Jackalman wasn't it?" says one of your friends, as if it was just a minor point. YES!

It clicks, your brain recognises the answer as being the Truth, and slumps down into a blissful state, relaxing for the first time in nearly a month. Nirvana is nothing compared to the pleasure of relief that surges through you, a feeling of exaltation greater than any drug can offer.

Another question that caused this kind of mental anguish for me was:

What were the original flavours of Monster munch? You know...the ones from back in the days where they had puppet monsters licking monster munch from trees.

But that was 5 years ago. Today, with Google and Wikipedia now being so close to omniscient as makes no difference, we can find out the answers to pretty much any question that bugs us instantly. Just type it in, and the answer is in front of you in milliseconds.

No more do we have to suffer for a month until the answer crops up - that suffering has gone, and gone with it is that immeasurable pleasure of relief when you finally found out.

And you know what? That really bugs me.


TheSlade said...

What I hate is when I get this exact problem with something that I either said or did in the past. Like "oh god what was that funny thing I said last week". THAT is the killer, internet can't help you there.

Alltruism said...

The Internet CAN help you there too....write a blog, and then all the funny things you say and do can be recorded for posterity ;-)