I was working on a draft of a post about the delightful book “Moonwalking with Einstein” by Joshua Foer for a few days last week. I started writing it one night when I was dead tired and very drunk. haha. Not a good combo. It lingered on a browser tab as I avoided night after night to close firefox. It was messy and it didn’t do the book or myself justice, aha. The browser crashed yesterday, so I lost the draft that I hadn’t saved(subconsciously aware that it was not salvageable). Now I am free to write again. My mind has been freed from the shackles of a post that I was uncomfortable with. I get to write another one that disappoints me, but this time I’ll make it to the end and post it before it’s too late!!
Back to the book. “Moonwalking with Einstein” is a non-fiction book about how the author, Joshua Foer, became interested in the ways our brain memorizes information as he covered a Memory Championship for an article he was meant to write. Learning about the process and techniques that help the competitors develop these incredible memories, Foer, with the help of some competitors and a researcher at Florida State University decided to investigate how much he could improve his own memory during the period of a year. As he narrates his journey, he takes the time to explore the history of memory, both culturally and historically. He philosophies about today’s switch to external memorization devices, and the shift in value placed on having a good memory. He also investigates some of our current knowledge about the powers of the mind for recollection, and invites the reader to meet a variety of quirky and fascinating characters with various mental super abilities, related disabilities and so on. One of the fascinating things about memorization we discover as readers is the importance of creative visualization techniques. One very rarely thinks of memorizing as an act of creativity but part of the book is dedicated at challenging our preconceived notions about the best ways to learn and remember. I for one was both inspired and motivated to try some of these age old techniques.
Foer writes wonderfully. His writing is clear and concise and his anecdotes charming and educational. I, personally, was thoroughly engaged in the reading of this book and have and will excitedly recommend it to anyone and everyone I know. Now, I’m no book reviewer(as you can tell…), so I invite you to read the following review that I’ve just found on the nytimes website if you are looking for another point of view:
That’s it for now.