Some time ago Oliver Sacks had an article in the New Yorker about face blindness, detailing his own experiences as well as those of patients. I, too, have a mild form of that and although some people are immediately 'someone' a lot of people are not. I know my mother had the trait as she'd speak of the difficulty of identifying people who were 'out of place' - not where they usually are seen. I didn't recognise the dental receptionist once, when I saw her at a play, and once I said to a man, 'I know I know you, but I can't think where,' to which he replied tartly, 'We just spent all day together in a workshop at school.' Hah! Then there's the famous (not really) way I always say I have no clue who Mary R. is, which makes people roll their eyes. Oh, and not forgetting the time I said I had a crush on someone, and upon being questioned ('What does he look like?' 'What colour hair?') I realised I had no clue. What attracted me was essence. 'I think he HAS hair... maybe' I said. Hah!
I also don't always process things through my ears. At times I have to replay in my brain the sounds I heard, before I can decipher the meaning. I don't know if that is a born-in trait or a result of 20668656 concussions I've had.
posted by - 9:52 PM