Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Too Many Numbers

There is a scene at the beginning of a little film called "Why Man Creates." One character is asking the other a series of questions, to which each answer is a series of numbers (address, phone number, ID number, zip code, etc etc). After a few exchanges their conversation devolves into just a lot of numbers
Man 1: "7389456?"
Man 2: "934647393"
Man 1: "9374"
Man 2: "3934 8493988 738937!!"
It's a nice commentary on how we have turned everything about ourselves into a series of numbers...on the one hand it's terribly impersonal, on the other hand it affords some privacy I suppose...but in the long run, it's just hard to remember them all.

The other day I called my bank about something and they asked me to provide verification of my identity. I'm glad that they do this of course--I wouldn't want someone else poking about in my bank account information--but somewhere in the middle my brain crashed.
Teller: "last four digits of your social?"
Me: "[yeah right like I'd publish that!]"
Teller: "home phone number"
Me: "[or that!]"
Teller: "Home address"
Me: "[number, street, city] Alaska..." mental blue screen of death! "998...wait, that was my old zip, 99...shoot, I can't remember my zip code! I think it's 99***" (Which it's not by the way, I got two of the three digits right but they were in the wrong order.)
Thankfully I had known all the other stuff so she believed that I was me.
But really, who forgets their own zip code? Especially when they've had it for 7 months?
Me, apparently.


SisuGirl said...

Oh Jeez, I do this all the time! I keep my Mums address in lower MI as my "home" address for federal things since I've moved so much but there there is the bank account I opened in WA that for some reason STILL had my old work cell number as my default phone number and didn't want to change it because I couldnt remember it from over 5 years ago! You would have laughed at me when I had to cancel the Serius radio renew (for J's boat) I bought as a Christmas present 2 years ago because I couldnt remember the phone number I used (Pelican home, Sitka Work or Sitka personal call) or even if the account was in my name or his! Very patient Customer Service :)

Becky N. said...

I do that all the time. Number overload. Start forgetting EVERYTHING.

I've forgotten my zip code, phone number, and while I had my SS# memorized in high school, number overload + mommy brain = often forgetting my SS# too. Urgh.

Mallory said...

I forget my zip code all the time. It's so hard, because I have lived in so many zip codes within the same area, they are all withing the same numbers. I always like, ok, is it 103 or 130 or 013! And, I know people in all three of those!!! Crazy!

Stacy said...

I was leaving someone a message on their voicemail yesterday and totally forgot my phone number. I had to ask my eight year old what our phone number was. Seriously.

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