Day 45 – Memory to go

I’ve been away all weekend, hiking in the Swiss alps. But I haven’t been completely unproductive in terms of my memorization. To pass time while walking, I memorized the 17 landmarks along our planned hiking trail. Since most names were in Swiss German, I had to translate them phonetically into something visualizable in Swedish. Pretty difficult, but it ended up working pretty well!

Unfortunately this wasn’t of much use, since we decided to take a bunch of detours, missing most of these landmarks. But nevertheless, a good example of memorizing on the go.

Day 39 – Finding a good balance in life

Today was balance day.

I headed out after work to begin my balance training for the handstand. 29°C and sunshine in beautiful and peaceful Kannenfeldpark; couldn’t ask for much more from a workout location. However, my performance could definitely ask for more. Let’s just say I realized I need to work on my balance… a lot! And my strength is still far from sufficient to do the controlled movement from a sitting down up to a handstand position.

Anyway, every lesson learned is one step closer to my goal.

Day 38 (again) – Monday is memory day

I went downtown to café Fumare/Non fumare this evening to continue reading Joshua Foer’s awesome book Moonwalking with Einstein. I’ve decided to make Mondays and Wednesdays my memory days, and Tuesdays and Thursdays my handstand days.

After finishing the sixth chapter on How to memorize a poem, I decided to lay down the book and do some memory practice. Brought out my deck of cards, only to realize I’d forgotten my list of abbreviations (which I still haven’t learned by heart). A bit disappointed, I started thinking of other things to memorize, and realized that memorizing my book’s blurb (ftr a word I discovered just now) would actually be quite useful, considering how often I tell people about it.

So, while waiting for Gonçalo to give me a different task, I will make this my next memory exercise. Here’s how it starts:

As I close my front door to leave for work, there is a whale in my kitchen, searching with a magnifying glass through a science magazine with a stars-and-stripes patterned brain on the front cover…

Day 38 – Motivation from my opponent

Had a good talk with my challenge mate Gonçalo yesterday. It’s nice to know that I’m not the only one struggling with motivating myself… especially with the rejection therapy.

Anyway, we decided to try to pressure ourselves with the memory training by giving each other memory tasks. So, Gonçalo (and Tiago, if you also wanna join in on this), you can choose to memorize one of the following (with expected time needed in parenthesis):

  1. All locations and winners of the FIFA world cup since 1930. (1 week)
  2. The complete of the Finnish national anthem (in Finnish). (1 week)
  3. The 10 first (or all 30) articles in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. (1 or 3 weeks)
  4. All territories and regions in Africa, with their respective capitals. (1, 3 or 5 weeks*)

* Time here depends on the type of memorization you want. 1 week is if you only want to be able to point out the countries and capitals when given a map with country borders; 3 weeks is if you are given only the continent, and have to draw all the country borders yourself; 5 weeks if you also have to learn where on a world map the African continent is located ;).