So, in the last month or so, I’ve been noticing something fairly disturbing… I’m getting dumber. It happens when I’m not really paying attention, but kinda running on auto-pilot. It started out small… little things here or there.. Like when I’m typing, and not really watching what I’m typing, all of a sudden certain words are replaced with other words… Example: replacing simple words with commonly used computer commands, like replacing “myself” with “mysql”, or “else” with “ls”. Not too out of the ordinary, really, but it does make for some fairly confusing Instant Messages and e-mails. That’s been going on for a while, but seems to have become more of a problem in the last month or so. Perhaps I can blame a lack of sleep, or something like that. But it doesn’t stop there…

It’s not a rare thing to walk from one room into the other and then have no idea why you went into that room… but that’s becoming more common now as well. More disturbing is when I walk from one room to another with something in my hand (like laundry, or a dirty glass or something) and then have no clue what I was doing. I’ll stand there like an idiot, staring at the glass, then looking at the dishwasher, then back to the glass.. and eventually return to my room, glass in hand, only to return to the kitchen a few minutes later to put it away. I’ve also walked up to the laundry room with the glass, then looked around confused.. trying to figure out what it was I was hoping to do. That’s disturbing.

Even more disturbing: While driving out to meet Tim Vroom for lunch (out on Alpine), I completely forgot what I was doing, and ended up by Eastown. This was about a week after I got lost while driving to work. Again, disturbing.

My favorite thus far: I was headed back from Rachel’s late one evening (prolly 3am-ish) and I came to a intersection with 4-way blinking red lights. I stopped… and waited…. for at least 5 minutes, before realizing the light wasn’t going to turn green. I just sat there, and no one drove by to snap me out of my trance.

It’s only a matter of time before I show up to work without pants.

2 thoughts on “Dumbening

  1. I know exactly what you mean, it started happening to me a couple years ago.

    I’ve decided it’s due to focus, and the inability to shift focus from one thought stream to another. I get thinking REALLY hard about a particular problem, and it’s REALLY hard to shift away from it. The more you do it, the harder it is to shift away.

    Ever heard of the absent minded professor? They really exist, and it’s because they’ve spent their life focusing so hard on a given problem.

    There have been code breakers who had it so bad they go crazy.

    The average person doesn’t focus that hard on any one thing, and it’s hard for them to understand, especially when they live with you. You think it’s frustrating to bring the dirty glass back to your room, try bringing it back to a wife who just asked you to take care of it.

    It’s seriously one of the things that made me consider becoming a carpenter.

  2. You’re not getting dumber, Ron, you’re getting older. I think of it as the “turning 30 syndrome” since that’s when it started to happen to me. It’s just hitting you a few years early.

    Welcome to old age.

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