Everyone Needs a Nametag

Me plus names equals epic failure. My brain just doesn’t work that way. I can recall obscure math facts or trivia from films, yet ask me the name of an actor or a character and I shut down. I end up saying, “That guy that was in the film with the sword who cut off the head of the guy that turns into a snake.” (Conan)

What’s worse it that I’m a teacher. I have to remember about a hundred names a year. I rely heavily on seating charts. It’s not to say that I can’t remember names. They do come. Yet after the students move on, I can only recall that I know the person. Not the name.

Some people view this as rude. Don’t. It’s not that I don’t remember you. I do. I simply can’t recall the name. It’s like those kids I work with that simply can’t remember how to add fractions. It has to do with multiple intelligences. You see there are different ways that the brain understands the world. I have the logical spatial and the linguistic. I don’t think I have the naturalist. But my daughter does. She can recognize and categorize animals in a snap. My theory is that this is linked with names. Or perhaps it’s the interpersonal intelligence, as she it sensitive to what others feel.

So don’t blame me for forgetting your name. I just have a deficit in that intelligence. You can’t be perfect at all of them, can you?

Tim Kane


6 comments on “Everyone Needs a Nametag

  1. My husband is like that. Remembers faces, but not their names. Kind of funny when he’s confronted by someone and gets locked into a conversation.

  2. I’m no alone! I’m spatially and linguistically inclined. I remember faces but names elude me. Thank you! And there’s even a spiffy graphic that shows my name deficiency is normal!

  3. Hubby is like you. He’s got the logical spatial stuff down pat but remembering names is like trying to tame the wind for him. Me, I don’t have a head for numbers, but I can usually remember names. 🙂

Leave a Reply