Daily Archives: November 28, 2011

Using The Doorway As An Excuse For Memory Lapse

Walking through doorways causes forgetting, new research shows.  Notre Dame News, from the Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology.

“Entering or exiting through a doorway serves as an ‘event boundary’ in the mind, which separates episodes of activity and files them away,” Radvansky explains.

“Recalling the decision or activity that was made in a different room is difficult because it has been compartmentalized.”

Can’t wait for the legal eagles to use the Americans with Disabilities Act as the defense for anyone whose memory fails them for whatever monumental task lies just beyond a doorway.  Whether as a student, an employee, or a family member, a disability will be claimed for any of a variety of situations that evolve not so well.

Can you hear it now?

  • I forgot all the answers to the bar exam because I crossed the door and entered the testing area. 
  • I forgot the lines for my part in the upcoming action-packed movie blockbuster because I passed through the stage doors.
  • My mind went blank when I started to sing the national anthem on live television, because I went through the doors at the stadium.
  • I forgot how to do the surgery because I entered the operating room.
  • I tripped after I could not remember to put my shoes back on once I passed through the TSA metal detector door.
  • I forgot how to put the brake fluid back in the brake master cylinder because I walked through the garage doors.
  • I forgot how to secure all the doors, entrances, and exits to the prison, when I walked in through the guard doors at work.
  • After I walked into the master control room, I forgot how to turn off the nuclear reactor at the radiation plant. 
  • I forgot all the cockpit buttons and gauges when it came time to land the jumbo 747.
  • I did not turn the oven off because I walked out of the kitchen. 
  • I could not remember how to perform after I crossed the threshold with my new spouse.
  • I forgot I was supposed to pay for all my purchases at the department store because I walked through the store entrance.
  •  
  • I forgot how to calculate the drug amounts for that bag of IV medication.
  • I just could not remember how to make change for that $100 bill as the cashier at work.
  • I forgot the kids in the car because I got out of the car and closed the door.

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