Aging Well in the Gorge August 11th 2015

It is frustrating when you can’t think of that word that’s on the tip of your tongue. But don’t fret. According to an article written for by Dr. Pascale Michelon, who holds a doctorate in cognitive psychiatry, that word is probably hidden somewhere in your brain’s temporal lobes where words are stored.
The temporal lobes are one of the four main lobes or regions of the cerebral cortex. (Okay, what is the cerebral cortex you may ask? It is the outer layer of the brain or what Agatha Christie’s fictional character, Hercule Poirot, calls the “little gray cells”.) I could tell you more about what is in the temporal lobes, but more useful is that the temporal lobes play an important role in auditory perception, speech, emotional response, visual perception and what at least concerns me the most – memory. In other words, important stuff.
The words stored in your temporal lobes seem to be, contrary to all the papers and files randomly stacked in my office, organized in a functional system. Research has also shown that words which are often heard together, such as salt and pepper, or words that share some meaning, such as nurse and doctor, are connected or associated in the brain. Once you hear one, the other is activated.
Here is a brain exercise, from the website, to stimulate the connections or associations between words in your temporal lobe.
Below you will find eleven pair of words. The challenge is to find a third word that is connected or associated with both of these two words. For example, what word is connected or associated with both PIANO and LOCK? I’ll give you one minute to think of the word.
Okay, times up.
The answer is KEY. There are KEYS on a piano and you use a KEY to lock doors. Got it?
Now are you ready to get serious and stimulate the connections in your temporal lobe? The answers will be found in next week’s column. Or if you can’t wait that long, they will be posted on the Center’s website at www.midcolumbiaseniorcenter/com. Good luck.
1) Ship and Card, 2) Tree and Car, 3) School and Eye, 4) Pillow and Court, 6) River and Money, 7) Bed and Paper, 8) Army and Water, 9) Tennis and Noise, 10) Egyptian and Mother, 11) Smoker and Plumber.
It is Wasco County Fair week, so don’t forget Free Family Day at the Wasco County Fair on Thursday thanks to Mel’s Sanitation. And what has become an annual tradition, the free “Senior Picnic in the Park” starts at 11:30 and is sponsored by Flagstone Senior Living, Mid-Columbia Council of Governments and Canyon Rim Manor.
Also LINK, north Wasco County’s public transportation provider, is once again offering free rides to the Wasco County Fair on Thursday. Call the Center for the few seats still available. The bus leaves the Center at 10:00 and will leave the fair around 1:00 PM.
At the Center on Tuesday, August 18th, the Simcoe Boys will be performing. Doors open at 6:00, music starts at 7:00, everyone is welcome, and donations are appreciated.
SONY (The name was chosen for its simple pronunciation and that it would be the same in any language.), was the first company to dominate the transistor radio market in America.
But now I need some help – and I’m serious. Each week I ask a “Remember When” question in order to bring back some hopefully pleasant memories lost in the cobwebs of your temporal lobes. (Remember, the grey matter of your brain.) But after six plus years, I’m running out of ideas. I’ve asked about music, television shows and events I remember: Hula Hoops and Heartbreak Hotel, Coonskin Caps and Chubby Checker. But there is so much more – like Bag Balm which I never heard of but everyone seems to have. So as the Beatles once sang, “Help, I need somebody”. And whether you remember a song, movie, special event, television show or commercial product that may have been forgotten, send it to me. If I use your question, you will receive a free Saturday breakfast. Email your answer to, or call and leave a message at 541-296-4788.
Well, it’s been another week, walking in the sunshine with a goofy smile. Until we meet again, as I was reminded last week, just because you’re wandering, it doesn’t mean you’re lost.
 “The mark of a successful man is one that has spent an entire day on the bank of a river without feeling guilty about it.” Author Unknown

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