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Michael Picarella: Poor memory, angry wife

Picarella Family Report

Posted: September 4, 2009 9:39 p.m.
Updated: September 5, 2009 4:55 a.m.

My wife says I forget things she tells me, but I don't remember.

She often tells me these things when I'm working on something - in deep concentration.

Days later, when she accuses me of forgetting what "we discussed," I tell her I most likely didn't hear what she said because I was busy. She usually says, regarding the moment when she tells me the thing I supposedly forget, that I respond to her.

"Did I say, ‘Uh huh' or something generic like that?" I ask. "Because if I had any kind of response like that, then chances are I wasn't really listening."

My wife then tells me I didn't say, "Uh huh" or something generic like that, and she reenacts, word for word, beat by beat, how I responded to what she said. None of the scenes she's acted out have ever been accurate.

I've therefore come to the conclusion that my wife is playing with my mind.

Yesterday, my wife busted me for forgetting to do something she supposedly asked me to do on Monday. I know for a fact she never asked me to do anything. And I told her so.

"I know for a fact you never asked me to do anything," I said.

"Whose memory are you gonna trust?" she asked. "Mine or yours?"

I admit I don't have "Rain Man" memory. But when I know something, I know it for sure. And I know that I'm sure about this latest accusation - my wife never asked me to do anything on Monday.

But I tried to recall the incident anyway. I wracked my brain. I replayed in my head the start of the week in its entirety. Nowhere could I see my wife approaching me and asking for anything.

It's common knowledge: wives are manipulative.

I know my wife is using my "bad memory" for her personal gain. In reality, she forgot to ask me to do the thing she wanted me to do on Monday. But since she already accused me of forgetting, she couldn't back down.

So instead she took a stronger stance against my mental faculties to justify her actions.

Mind thy head, the sign says above the low overhang. I always do. And I take great care of the contents within my head.

When my wife and I got married, I stored the date in my memory so I wouldn't forget. And when I got home, I put the date in the calendar on my computer with a reminder that'd pop up onscreen and on my cell phone every year, a week before the day, so I'd remember to buy a gift and say, "Happy anniversary, babe."

If someone asks me to do something, I always remember to write it down on a Post-It note.

If I don't get to the requested task, it's not because I forgot, but rather because I didn't have the time to read the more than 800 notes I have posted around my house, in my car and on my person.

I'm the proud owner of many famous movie quotes, which I store neatly-in alphabetical order-in my memory. Name a movie, and I can probably recite at least a few lines from it. Do I get credit for this unbelievably incredible skill?

No. My wife seems to think that movie quotes are trivial and space-wasters, and that it's because I have such an overflow of movie quotes in my brain that I don't have room to store what she says.

I asked my father-in-law if he's ever had to deal with this issue of his memory during his marriage tenure. My mother-in-law said he wouldn't remember. My mom had the same to say about my step-dad.

I certainly wouldn't forget that my wife abused my mind. My memory is much better than that.

But I'll be darned if I can bring to mind yesterday's conversation regarding the thing I allegedly forgot to do. I just know that whatever it was my wife thinks she told me, I didn't forget it.

Now where was I?

Michael Picarella is a Valencia resident and a proud husband and father. His column reflects his own opinion and not necessarily that of The Signal. To contact Picarella or to read more stories, go to


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