Saturday, November 26, 2011

The postman's got in touch with his feminine side

My postman's a woman - she always used to say "It's the postman" when she rang the doorbell to deliver something that wouldn't fit in the letterbox, but today she said "It's the postlady". This is either a great step towards gender equality, or a great step away from it, I can't quite decide which.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Memory championship news

Dear European memory athletes,

due to various reasons nearly all of the Europeans have chosen not go
to the World Memory Championships in China this year. Furthermore,
there is a lot to discuss about the future of memory sports.

To address both, we would like to invite all of you to Munich,
Germany, for the “Munich Open 2011” memory competition. The tournament
will be a National Standard event, i.e. ten disciplines with shortened
marathons: The kind of tournament you already know from Cambridge and

Important: We will have one age division only and we might do the
memorisation and/or recall phase of some or all disciplines with
computers or digital tools using Memocamp.

Date: December 9th to 11th 2011
Place: Munich. Exact and final location will be provided soon.
Languages: Material will be offered in German and English.
Fee: 20 Euro. Food is not included.
Registration deadline: December 2nd
Registration: By e-mail to


Friday, December 9th

- Arrivals, visit of the famous Munich Xmas market, dinner

Saturday, December 10th

MORNING: Tournament, part 1

9:00 Welcome and introduction
9:30 Random words 5 min (15 min recall)
10:00 Binary numbers 5 min (15 min recall)
10:30 Names and faces 5 min (15 min recall)
11:00 Numbers 15 min (30 min recall)
12:00 Cards 10 min (20 min recall)
12:40 Historic Dates 5 min (15 min recall)
13.00 Lunch break


Talk and discussion about the WMSC and the future of memory sports

Sunday, December 11th

MORNING: Tournament, part 2

9:30 Abstract Images 15 min (30 min recall)
10.30 Speed Numbers 5 min (15 min recall), 1st trial
11:00 Speed Numbers 5 min (15 min recall), 2nd trial

11.30 Spoken Numbers 100, 300
12.15 Speed Cards (two trials)
13.00 Prize giving ceremony


Leisure activities, departure

Best Regards,
Your MemoryXL-Team

I'd better get training. I haven't really done any practice since dropping out of the WMC. I'm confident that I'll end up making a fool of myself anyway, so please do come along and beat me. If memory serves, the last time I went to a national-standard competition in Germany in the winter, I came 6th, my worst placing in any championship ever since I came up with the 'unbeatable Ben system'. I was beaten by Clemens, Cornelia, Gunther, Boris and Johannes, but still narrowly finished ahead of Simon. Let's see if I can repeat the feat five years later! (Cornelia's not coming, apparently, and I somehow doubt we'll be seeing Clemens either, so there's an opportunity for other people to out-memorise me)

And even though the venue is "somewhere in Munich" with a couple of weeks to go, I think we can guarantee that this competition will happen. I'll host it in my hotel room if need be...

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy American Thanksgiving!

It turns out that it's Thanksgiving today in the USA, as opposed to Canada where it was Thanksgiving months ago, and here, where we're too rude to say thanks. So I celebrated by watching Friends on Comedy Central, and I was pleased to see that they even show the episode that E4 used to skip completely. I'm quite impressed with Comedy Central's lack of censorship, in fact. What better way to celebrate Thanksgiving than by watching Americans talking about pornography?