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Return of the Knave
Drink It Black
Monday, 6 October 2003
Knight CAPS
reCAPS even.
Notice in previous posts when I'm wacking on about Acka-Dacka how the proceedings get weighed down. That's because the second sentence of the paragraph runs on to thirty eight words, many of them long words to start with.

I can't find a reference to a fogging index for some reason but suffice to say that this sentence would set one off big time. And if you're battling to digest a bite of information at the time you're reading it then there is next to no chance that you'll commit it to memory.

So break the whole thing into smaller phrases and clauses; reduce it all to dotpoints.

And as much as that might be distasteful to academics - I've seen quite a bit of anti-Powerpoint rhetoric recently - ready made lists are the easiest to recall this way. There is no necessary connection between the points so they are more capable of providing the 'spikes' in any memory exercise you engage in.

In the D.R.I. example there are problems unique to discographies: we have the obligatory live album and the referential Thrash Zone, a kind of generic marker that we see across the board in such titles as Real Folk Blues and Punk's Not Dead. They can't be left out obviously but they're not as hard to manage as 'Wonderful World of..', '...Sings the Classics', 'Very Best Of..' and can be weaved clumsily into the mnemonic. You're not after a winning narrative; as long as it serves as a useful memory aid.

It goes without saying that there is nothing about the 'Dirty Rotten' narrative that implies that I don't bathe regularly or that you as the reader are less than kind to small furry creatures. It's worth remarking though because the use of first person - even where that is contradictory from poem to poem or song to song, story to story - is often assumed to mean that it is the author whose feelings or thoughts are being represented. Seeing something bunged together like this makes that clear.

Attempting this exercise doesn't require a knowledge of skate culture or thrash and the person doing the imagining need never have gotten into a discussion with people who wear, play or listen to metal.

I know the exercise I based my example on tells you to choose a familiar environment but I'd imagine mental role-playing like this would be a boost. I've really designed it on the fly to help remember the sequence. The protagonist moves through the hastily constructed landscape in a set order and there has to be something about the props and examples used that ties them as much as possible to the required article and not some rough approximation. For instance, I lit on the booze bottle as I thought thumping someone for littering wasn't sufficiently 'passive' enough; the booze bottle tucked into the coat to meet the bully's fist brings the right mix into play. And it enables a more active 'Dealing With The Situation' to follow.

It isn't failproof as I've found myself thinking of zebra crossings at 'Crossover' point but that gets picked up by having thrash and metal on opposite sides of the street thus reinforcing the musical sense of a crossover. The '4 Of A Kind' could probably do with some image of the numeral 4 for reinforcement. The 'D for Definition' reference is to remind of the word by being silly - it would normally be 'T for Thrash Zone', the example definition - and by repetition. It also segues into 'D.R.I. Live'. The smartass references to the punctuation marks is nothing more than a reminder that that is how their name is spelt (possibly so they don't end up being called 'dry') and the end of the narrative with the four of a kind left trailing in [your] wake signals also that this is the end of the mnemonic. We finish on 'Full Speed Ahead'. Note that no attempt has been made to recall the year of release. I think that would be almost impossible to incorporate.

Posted by berko_wills at 11:34 PM NZT
Updated: Tuesday, 7 October 2003 12:01 AM NZT
Post Comment | View Comments (2) | Permalink

Sunday, 12 October 2003 - 5:38 PM NZT

Name: ella

this is getting a wee bit scary! I mean, how hard are you thinking about all of this.

dost thou brain hurt at the end of the evening?

And where did you get a CAR? I can't seem to find that info...

AND - BERKO - MY LOVE - I've forgotten your birthday...

WAH - I STINK!

- ella

Monday, 13 October 2003 - 1:12 AM NZT

Name: Berko

I don't think THAT hard about it; I pretty much make it up as I go along.


I think the car info was in an e-mail. It was my exes as she now has her mother's car.


And Ella, you don't stink, it's not my birthday til Tuesday so you haven't forgotten after all. :) :)

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