Hearts or Crosses

I had a weird interaction at work today in the jewelry department. I showed a woman a necklace with a heart pendent but the chain wasn’t long enough for her. As I was putting it back in the case on one pad, she asked to see another necklace on a different pad.

Customer: Can I see the one with two hearts?

Me: (Looks at jewelry pad she is pointing at. I don’t see a necklace with two hearts.) Which one?

Customer: The one with two hearts.

Me: (Still looking, still don’t see necklace with two hearts. See necklace with two crosses.) The one with two crosses?

Customer: No, two hearts. It’s the second from the left.

Me: (Second necklace from left is the one with two crosses. I reach into the case and touch the necklace with two crosses.) This one?

Customer: Yes.

Me: Those are crosses.

Customer: That’s what I said. Wait, what was I saying?

Me: You said hearts.

Customer: No, I was saying crosses.

I let it drop after that because there is nothing to be gained from arguing with a customer but I did kind of wonder which of us was hearing and/or saying the wrong thing. Was she saying crosses the whole time and I heard it as hearts? Was she saying hearts but thinking she was saying crosses?  Was I saying hearts? Was it some weird mix?

Part of me wants to believe I was hearing everything correctly but part of me knows human perception and memory are fallible. I have never wanted to have recorded a conversation more.


My Memories

My memories are a labyrinth
Winding corridors
Secret doors
Dead ends and pitfalls

My memories are a quilt
Cut apart pieces
Stitched together fragments
Painstakingly reassembled

My memories are a map
Charting my life
From place to place
From then to now

My memories are a book in progress
Half written chapters
In need of editing
With no ending.

What’s the Last Thing You Remember?

I’m seven years old.

“She’s waking up.”

I’m lying on a bed. There’s two women in the room. I don’t see my mommy. “Where’s my mommy?”

“Hi, you’re in a hospital. Can you tell me the last thing you remember?” one woman asks. She’s wearing all white and seems nice.

“I was laying down in a machine to scan my brain,” I say.

“Good, good. Can you tell me how old you are?” She has a pretty smile.

“I’m seven. My birthday party was last week. We went skating.” It was a lot of fun.

“Good, first layer seems to have integrated. We should get her memories up to adult range as soon as possible.” The other woman is also dressed in white and she has a computer tablet. She doesn’t smile.

“Can you sit up?”

She helps me to sit up. Something feels weird. I look down and I have boobies. “I have boobies,” I say.

“Yes, you do. Can you look at the light?” She shines a light in my eyes and snaps her fingers near my head.

“Reaction time seems fine,” the other woman says.

“Ok, lay back down and put your head here.” She points to a hole in big metal donut at the head of the bed.

I don’t want to lay down. I’m scared. I want my mommy. “I want my mommy.”

“I know but first you have to lay down and then you can see your mommy, ok.”

“Promise?” I ask.

“Promise,” she says and crosses her heart. I lay down and put my head in the donut, “Ok, spin it up.”

“Preparing upload,” the woman with the tablet says.

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