Dear People I Have Met Several Times In My Life Whose Names I Can Never Remember

Word Count – 575

To all of you, I’m truly sorry. I can’t blame this on any kind of mental problem or drug dependency, I just legitimately can not remember the names of… well, frankly anyone, most of the time.

Interestingly, I discovered this condition actually has a name, ‘jamais vu’. It is actually the exact opposite of déjà vu, in that I could hear your name over and over and over again, yet convince myself that I’ve never heard it before in my entire life.

Again, this is totally not your fault, but I feel like I owe it to you to explain my dilemma. I owe each and every one of you an apology, but am far too embarrassed to say so to your faces. Also, I do not know how to contact any of you, because I can’t remember your names. You see my problem. Instead, I have decided to address you here individually in this letter, using the nicknames I have created for you based on the vague bits of knowledge I have gleaned about you.

Sleepy McHeadWound – You spent the night on my couch once and had a large gash on your head. You have been over several times since then, and we have talked about many things beyond sleeping and head injuries. I do not recall any of these conversations, yet I am led to believe you think you are my friend. You are not. I’m sorry.

Lady Jim – You were a friend of a friend who reminded me of a guy I knew named Jim. I mentioned this to you, and you seemed confused and a tiny bit offended. You should consider it a compliment. I liked Jim. Now that I think about it, I should get in touch with him. As for you, I know absolutely nothing else about you. I’m sorry.

The Brick – You were a large man I used to work with who barely talked to me. I was pretty sure you hated me, but I never asked you, out of fear that you might hurt me. Nobody else at work seemed to know your name, either. Part of me today still wonders if you were actually an employee of the store, or just a large crazy man who stole a uniform and began lifting things and moving them around. Regardless, I’m sorry.

Cowboy Manchild – You were another former co-worker who always wore a cowboy hat. You were a prick, and I’m only sorry in theory.

Short Stack – A name I have given to at least two dozen people in the course of my life, many of whom were actually taller than me. To all of you, I’m sorry.

There are many more out there who deserve apologies, but most of whom I have not given proper nicknames to. There are many “Whosits” and “That guy’s” out there who are also entitled to their just dues, and to all of them I give my sincerest apologies, as well.

Now that I’ve got that out of the way, can everyone please promise to stop naming their children Matt or Sarah and at least try to be interesting in social situations when you meet me for the first time? Perhaps this ‘jamais vu’ bullshit has something to do with the fact that none of you have names, or stories that go along with said names, that are worth remembering. Help me out a little bit and work on that.

– J.D. Renaud

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