THE SUBTLE ART OF CHOOSING NOT TO REMEMBER

The dictionary defines forgetting as a failure to remember. An innocent act where a task, thought, sentiment, etc. flies away from our easily distracted minds on accident – never to return. Well, that’s not entirely true. It returns in full force when someone gets mad that you forgot their birthday, or to get cheese at the store, or that you were supposed to pick up their kid from swim practice, or that you love them, or any number of things. In other words, forgetting is bliss. Until it becomes an intense panic.

While there are certain times when forgetting is a valid excuse, I find that a lot of people simply choose not to remember. Failure, after all, is merely a lack of being prepared. So if you aren’t prepared to remember, or don’t care enough to remember, then that’s on you. It’s not an acceptable reason to pick up a pack of store brand graham crackers at the grocery store on your way home because you didn’t realize it was Tuesday and I expect my weekly present. I mean, if you’re going to get me anything from the grocery store as an afterthought, it would be Chewy Chips Ahoy obviously. Or did you also forget how much I like those? Don’t be cheap and don’t be a liar.

Don’t believe me? Ok, I’ll prove it to you in a series of highly relatable examples. It’s fine if you start to blush, or get a little embarrassed reading through these, nobody’s perfect. I, for one, often choose not to remember when my daily morning meeting starts in an effort to send the subtle hint to my boss that they are not my favorite (like a real adult). I have also been known to actively choose non-remembrance when my doctor asks how my diet has improved since the last visit. Hard to say how much was sugar versus healthy … it was definitely a pyramid though so I should get points for staying within the geometric shape.

  • Tests – you “forget” to study for the Monday morning test because there was Friday Funday, Self-Love Saturday, and, of course, Spirit Sunday. There was simply no time and you know that you sit next to the soon-to-be Valedictorian who is extremely book-smart, but tends to write in size 50 font
    • In other words, you could have studied, but you chose to forget
  • Grocery Shopping – you know that you should buy fruits, vegetables, non-microwaveable meals, vitamins, etc. However, fresh produce doesn’t last as long, real cooking is a major commitment, vitamins cost about as much as a vital organ on the black market and you’re mildly healthy (you sit in front of a sunny window most of the day), someone asked you to pick up more milk, but you’re lactose intolerant, etc.
    • In other words, you could have purchased healthy food and been a nice human being, but you chose to forget
  • Chores – as a child, someone is forcing you to remember these. As an adult, not so much. It’s easy to “forget” that the baseboards haven’t been dusted, the refrigerator drawers haven’t been sanitized, the curtains haven’t been cleaned, etc. 
    • In other words, you could have done those, but honestly life is too short to be dusting some baseboards behind furniture. You can pay someone to do that if it bothers you
  • Work – I’m going to let you self-reflect here, but everyone (and I do mean everyone) has at one point been given a task, or responsibility, that isn’t necessarily ideal nor interesting. What did you do? Do you remember? If you say no, that’s because you’re choosing not to – just like you did in the office. ‘Oh dear, I was supposed to go to the basement and replace the lightbulbs in the unused conference room. What a shame. Welp, tomorrow is Bill’s turn, tell him I’m simply ill that I forgot.’ Liar.

So the next time someone tells you they forgot, smile and know that they are probably lying. If they’re at all important in your life, forgive them because we all know you’ve done it to them at some point so have a little moment of karma. If, however, you don’t know them, question their choices in life, but then forget and move on because life is too short to hold grudges. Especially against someone you don’t even know. Sorry, don’t forget, then you would be on their level – choose not to remember.

Alright, jumping off my pedestal for now. If you didn’t like this post, then choose not to remember you read it. If you did like it, and know someone who tends to forget things (like start times) share this so they can realize they are lying to everyone, including themselves. But do it gently, in a caring, forgiving kind of way. Thanks for reading!


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