via The Ringer: Memories are malleable. The more we retrieve and recount them, the more they may change. Each time we exhume a memory for our own inspection, or tweak a retelling to get a laugh or coax a cry, we run the risk of unwittingly altering the original recollection. And the older we get, the less likely we are to relive events via vivid, specific details (“verbatim memories”) as opposed to fuzzy, general representations of past events (“gist memories”).
All of which makes me wonder what happens in the hippocampus of Paul McCartney when the 79-year-old former Beatle is asked about his 20-something self. Does he remember being in the Beatles, or is he remembering remembering being in the Beatles? And how can he separate how it happened then from what he knows now? As McCartney says in Hulu’s new six-part docuseries about Beatle Paul, McCartney 3, 2, 1, “I say I look back, and at the time, I was just working with this bloke called John. Now I look back and I was working with John Lennon.” That telltale “I say” at the start of the statement suggests that even this is a remark he’s made before.
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