Saturday, March 31, 2007

An slr camera as a mental sling

I'm currently on holiday, for quite sometime as well, 2,5 weeks :) We did have plans on going abroad this week, but the urge kinda faded out. I don't know whether it's all the talk about flying to Thailand or even southern Europe is the ultimate proof that you're an environmental culprit or just that there were no really interesting last minute flights available. We had been to all the cities available, even lived in one of them so... Instead, I "wasted" my money on a new SLR camera, a Nikon D40. So far, I'm more than happy, rather excited really, I even neo-launched my flickr account that has been in a respirator for quite sometime now.

And today, I was again reminded of why it is so important to me to always carry around a camera, to always document things. The breakup of the ice in the rivers and streams has occurred unusually early this year. So when discussing this, my mum comments "yes, it's rather early but the ice breakup has been this early before too" and she tells me the year. Same thing happened when the past December was unusually warm, a friend of our family could pinpoint the exact year (I think it was in the 1930's) the weather had pulled similar tricks on snow sick Finns celebrating Christmas. And this is what bugs me, people remember things, they store knowledge in the nervous system well hidden from complicating factors like oblivion and they can more or less with little ease pull the information out of there. Whereas I don't. Sometimes, when I solemnly swear I don't know/remember something although having told a friend about it earlier, I'm told "I know you know that". That's pretty bad. And this is because I have to see an image in order to recall something. When I do, or when I'm told the scenery or surroundings of the situation I try to recall, all sorts of information comes to the surface such as who participated in the event, when and where it was, et cetera. It's the same thing with books or magazines, I always know on what page an article or even a piece of information is. And since I'm very interested in time spans regarding the weather, fashion, music, politics et cetera, taking pictures and storing them with a time stamp and a short, descriptive tag or is the only means I have to ever recall anything. Perhaps this is a form of photographic memory, on whose "to be or not to be" there seems to be a controversy going on...

2 comments:

Matti said...

You know, it's not just you. I constantly tell everybody I don't have an episodic memory. I don't seem to remember events. People around me can even tell me what clothes I wore when something a particular day some years ago, or perhaps what I said. I wouldn't know I even was there. But my semantic memory is... well. Just let me say that if I have ever heard some kind of fact, I simply remember it. And the pagenumber where I read it. Or the exact reference. Anyhow, perhaps I should get a camera too. So that I remember at least something.

Paeonia said...

Hi Matti, I'm relieved to hear I'm not the only one :) Funny you should mention how people point out what you said ages ago. I find it utterly fascinating how someone can remember a certain word you used, or a phrase you uttered even years after the occasion. I'd only know it if they wrote it down and I saw the piece of paper. If you do get a camera and become a documenter, make sure to let me know the outcome!