Random thought on the 13.30 to Newcastle

Today I read something Oliver Sacks wrote many years ago about a man with a severe case of amnesia. His memory was 30-seconds long. Sacks said the patient was “isolated in a single moment of being with a moat of lacuna or forgetting all round him…he is a man without a past (or future), stuck in a constantly changing, meaningless moment”. It may be a bit of a stretch but this remark reminds me of our present condition. We see and hear everything from around the world within an instant of it happening but we are generally unable to retain even a hint of these events for anything much more than a week. We are aghast at what happened last year but then instantly move on to be shocked by new horrors. We seem to be completely incapable of preserving new memories and are then bewildered at new events, despite the fact that they have happened before. I think this is what’s fuelling our present sense of anxiety and bewilderment.

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