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Steven Shorrock @StevenShorrock
, 18 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
A little story about prospective memory. Last week at #HSJPatientSafety I talked a bit about research on prospective memory, in the context of Kathryn Walton's account of her terrifying experience of being accidentally paralysed following a forgotten cannula. 1/
It appeared that there was an intention to remove the cannula, which had the substance in the dead space, but this was forgotten. Research I did in ATC years ago showed prospective memory forgetting to be the dominant kind.… 2/
Anyway, awareness of suchlike avails me of little. It might give a small advantage, like using @Wunderlist to record my intentions, but it is far from 100% and most people use lists. It's not always possible though, in everydaylife, much less in the operating theatre. 3/
The wise move is not to do things that mean you rely on prospective memory! But you have to remember not to! Or else you have to crate routines such that you don't rely on prospective memory or at least recognise where it will cause you problems. 4/
Sadly, I don't always heed this advice to self. On Saturday, I arrived on Île de Ré, on to a bus with an overhead luggage space. I had a bag which contained *every valuable material thing* - passports, keys, electronics, etc. Guess where I put it... 5/
That's right, friends. I put the bag in the overhead space. And guess what I did when I got off the bus... That's right, I got off (bit stressed - kids and loads of bags to get off) <sans sac a dos>. 6/
See, at this point, the dominant intention was to get off, gets kids off, and crucially collect the cases. I did all that, but didn't get the backpack. 7/
I realise within a few minutes, and submit a lost property web form. It is Saturday and France, so the office was closed until Monday (0900-1200, 1400-1700). 8/
On Monday, we phone up but the week has just started and France won the world cup the day before so my bag is not exactly top priority. At 10am, everyone is still part way through the morning routine of kissing everyone else. 9/
So we bike to a police station to report it lost. After all, it contains passports. The police are not interested. The commander walks in and asks the officer what is going on. The officer tells commander. [Also says, "She [our daughter] speaks French. He [me] doesn't.".] 10/
Anyway, commander says that the bus company is around the corner. Not the main terminus, but one of the centres. We walk round there and my wife and kids are explaining the problem while I [forgetful poor French speaker] wait outside with bikes. 11/
I have a @TheTileApp on my phone and knew I had a Tile on my keys. Works via Bluetooth. Anyway, I messed with the app just sort of praying. No real expectation it would be nearby. But, to my amazement, I got the green circle of joy. 12/
The keys were within range. A little map came up. The keys were 2 metres or so away. I tap the little green circle. And I walk into the tea room. A driver is there. Not my driver by a driver. I hear the little jingle from the @TheTileApp tile. OMG, the bag is here! 13/
I explain to the driver that my bag is in someone's locker. I pressed the button on the @TheTileApp to prove it. But the locker was locked. The driver returned to work the next day, early. 14/
I didn't mind. I now had the pleasure of finding something I thought was lost, which is always better than getting something in the first place. Next day, I did the 45 min cycle to meet the driver who'd safeguarded my bag in his locker. 15/
I arrived the next day, and after a while he reported for duty. I met him and he seemed to know nothing about a bag. Then he asked what colour it is. I said "black and red, and it's in your locker" [except I didn't know the word for locker so just pointed...]. 16/
He opened the locker and gave me the bag. I expected that I'd enthusiastically thank him, he'd smile and say it was just his job. Everybody happy. In the event I got a telling off, but didn't understand what he was saying and didn't want to ask him to tell me off more slowly. 17/
I did learn some lessons, inc: 1) Don't keep all valuables in one bag. 2) Label all bags with email & phone. 3) Keep using @TheTileApp. 4) Try not to rely on prospective memory, esp. for non-routine situations. 5) Design fail-safer routines. 6) Keep praying for serendipity. 18/
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