Loading...
I got the surprise of my life when people were complaining about a DR editorial. You mean the BYH column is not the...

I'll take memory for $200, Alex

JimMullen

Jim Mullen

Loading…

Sunday, June 9, 2019

On our way to play golf today, Charlie and I couldn't think of the name of the movie star who had come up in our conversation. We could remember all the movies he was in, all his co-stars, all kinds of odd trivia about his life and times — everything but his name. That's all right; sometime when we're thinking of something completely different, it will come to us.

All of us have moments when we struggle to come up with the name of someone or something — the name of an old co-worker, neighbor or shop owner. And when it happens, especially as we get older, we all wonder if this is the first sign of what's to come. Am I getting Alzheimer's, or is it just a fleeting senior moment? But the odds that Charlie and I had both lost our minds at the same time seemed a little far-fetched.

"We used to forget things when we were 16, too," Charlie said. "We just didn't worry about it. I sure don't remember acing every test I took in high school."

"Yeah, but you didn't forget that stuff, you were just stupid. You can't forget stuff you never knew to begin with."

"It'd be a terrible thing if someone accidentally got hit with a golf club today," Charlie said, a little too cheerfully.

"We didn't forget this guy," I said. "We can see his face, we know what films he was in, we know his name — we just can't pull it up. But it's in there somewhere. It'll come to us."

"Google it," Charlie said. "Google never forgets anything."

"Knowing everything doesn't make you smart, anyway. An encyclopedia isn't smart."

"Henry Fonda!"

"That's what I said!"

"You never said that."

"But you knew who I was talking about."

"I thought we were talking about Jimmy Stewart."

That night, after Charlie trounced me on the golf course, I watched James Holzhauer win his 29th "Jeopardy!" game in a row. He has what is commonly called an encyclopedic memory. And so far, he has outplayed 58 people who also have phenomenal memories. But James is 35 years old. As a longtime "Jeopardy!" fan, I'm wondering if there should be a spinoff show for people my age. Say, "Senior Jeopardy." The rules would be the same, but you'd get a little more latitude with your answers.

"I'll take Movie Stars for $200, Alex."

"He played the Godfather in 'The Godfather.'"

"Who was, that guy who was in that other movie about the boxer who coulda been a contender?"

"Could you be a little more specific?"

"Who was, the guy who yelled 'Stellllaaaaa'?"

"That's right. Still your turn, Jim."

"Movie Stars for $400."

"He played Rhett Butler in 'Gone With the Wind.'"

"The guy with the mustache."

"It's got to be in the form of a question."

"Who was, the guy with the mustache?"

"So close, but our judges say that's not enough."

"Who was, the guy married to Carole Lombard?"

"That's correct for $400. It's still your board."

"I'll take Stupid Questions for $800."

"You've hit the Daily Double. How much do you want to risk?"

"A dollar."

"Good choice. Why go crazy? This ancient Greek city held the first Olympics in 776 B.C."

"I'll take 'Phone a Friend' on that."

"That's another show. You pushed the buzzer, now you have to answer."

"What is, Glocca Morra?"

"That is so wrong. It's not even a real place. The answer was 'Olympia,' but we would have accepted 'Oleo,' 'Olivia' or anything close to that. We'll be right back with our Double Jeopardy round after these commercials for products I hope you'll never need."

Jim Mullen is the author of It Takes a Village Idiot: A Memoir of Life After the City. His column, The Village Idiot, takes a look at the curiosities of American life.

Loading…

Humans of Greenville

@HumansofGville

Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

Look

August 23, 2019

TODAY

Watermelon Festival

The 34th annual Winterville Watermelon Festival continues today-Sunday in downtown Winterville. The event will include carnival rides, a parade, a watermelon-eating contest and live music and entertainment. The Watermelon Jam concert, a ticketed event, will begin at 6 p.m.…

082618watermelonfestival-6.jpg.jpg.jpg

August 21, 2019

Q I recently was diagnosed with GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) and given medication. Are there any lifestyle changes I can make that will be helpful? I hate taking medicine. — GW, Greenville

A I asked Derek Schaap, a Brody medical student to answer your question. Here is what he wants…

5cff256e6c8fd.image.jpg

August 21, 2019

When hurricanes or other natural disasters impact communities, it disrupts life in many ways. For those with chronic conditions, navigating these disruptions means preparing for the worst and having an excess of the life-saving medication they depend on.

Dr. Bryan Kitch, medical director of…

Prescriptions 2.jpg

August 18, 2019

I am quitting TV journalism. From now on, I'm getting my news from the papers. I have been thinking about it for a long time, but I finally decided when a friend of mine told me his story:

I was watching Nicole Wallace one afternoon as she preached about the imminent collapse of democracy as we…

harvey

August 16, 2019

TODAY

Jazz fundraiser

The Churches Outreach Network will present an Evening of Jazz fundraiser from 6:30-9 p.m. today at Yankee Hall Plantation, 3332 Yankee Hall Road. The event, which will celebrate 11 years of service by CON, will include a three-course meal and a live jazz ensemble. Tickets are…

DSC_4731.JPG.JPG

August 14, 2019

Q: I decided to try to use olive oil instead of vegetable oil. Standing in front of the olive oil section I couldn’t figure out what to buy. Can you help? KP, Farmville

A: You share the same dilemma with many of us. On a recent trip to Boston I went into a great market that had an entire…

5cff256e6c8fd.image.jpg

August 11, 2019

Before she graduated from high school, Ghita Harris worked as a medical research assistant in the ECU School of Medicine, an opportunity that would have seemed to have put her on the fast track to becoming a physician. But more than two decades later, her journey has just begun.

The Greenville…

5d4dabb4703dd.image.jpg

August 11, 2019

Over 50 years ago, I had a Swedish girlfriend.

It never turned into anything long-term. But the fact that I met the Swedish girl before I met the girl I ended up marrying clearly introduced several complications into both relationships. And it has produced a tale that my wife Ruthie has never tired…

5cf84491e3f83.image.jpg

August 10, 2019

TODAY

Relay fundraiser

Relay for Life Pitt County will host its annual Purple Ribbon Charity Dinner and Silent Auction from 7-11 p.m. today at The Cotton Barn, 942 Laurie Ellis Road, Winterville. The theme is “Eat, Drink, and be Charitable.” Tickets are $50 each or $75 per couple. Visit…

August 09, 2019

TODAY

Play festival

Magnolia Arts Center, 1703 E. 14th St., will host the annual 10-minute Play Festival performance at 7:30 p.m. today. Tickets are $10. Visit magnoliaartscenter.com.

Music in the Park

Grimesland’s monthly Music in the Park series continues at 6:30 p.m. today at Grimesland…

124 stories in Look. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 13
        Next Page»   Last Page»