Tuesday, February 10, 2015

What are Memories Made of?

What are memories made of?  Puppy dog tails, bakery smells, the feeling of sun on your face?  I only know for sure that memories are not made of megabytes.  For the second time in eighteen months I have had a 2 terabyte external hard drive go belly up.  We lost power last night and I lost about 30,000 images.  Apparently, I am supposed to have backup for my backup.  It puts me in mind of Bertrand Russell who delivered a speech about galaxies.  A woman in the audience said that was nonsense, everyone knew that the earth sat on the back of a giant tortoise.  Russell asked, "ah, but what is the turtle standing on?"  Her response, "it's turtles all the way down."  To be data safe in this brave new world, it seems we need banks of external hard drives, 'all the way down.'
   The above photo is my new granddaughter.  (Baby picture removed at the request of her parents) I hope to have many memories of her that don't require backup.  I have kept a journal since 1976, a reassuring hardcopy of my life.  I am missing the year my son was born.  He was a very fussy child.  Not his fault, as it happens.  The pediatrician prescribed warm water with karo syrup for his colic.  He was allergic to corn syrup, so I was pouring gasoline on the fire.  Now I wonder if things were so bad I contemplated infanticide and tossed the journal destroy the evidence.

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