Friday, 2 November 2012

A nice case of subconscious recall

During my holiday in Japan, I've been watching the Japan Series of baseball, where the winners of the two baseball leagues compete in a number of World Series style matches. This year it's between the Yomiuri Giants and the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters.

I've always liked baseball, ever since I was able to piece together the rules from reading and rereading Peanuts comic strips, but this was the first time I've been able to watch entire games of baseball on TV. My previous knowledge of the actual game was little more than being able to recall a few team names, and that's it. The only baseball players whose names I recognise are Babe Ruth, Joe diMaggio and Joe Shlabotnik, the fictional player who was Charlie Brown's hero.

But one night I dreamt I was talking to a couple of Americans (one of who was John Goodman, by the way) about baseball and they said that the Giants had won the series, no problems, and the other guys never even got close. I said that the series was still going on and that the Fighters had actually won the last game to bring the series to 2-1 (which, at the time, was true).

They started getting very sarcastic, saying I knew nothing and should shut up about baseball and I started to get angry that they were offended by being corrected by an Englishman on their national sport.

Then I woke up and thought, I should've asked if they meant the World Series. I had seen, on the BBC, a headline "San Francisco win World Series"but I hadn't clicked through to the story. I had to check, so I went online, read the story and, sure enough, it was the San Francisco Giants who'd won the World Series (but the score was 4-3, so the other guys did get close).

Well, I was quite impressed with myself. Either I had already known that, somewhere deep inside my brain, or I had overheard a news story/conversation recently (which would've been in Japanese) which had sunk into my sub-consciousness.

Anyway, I wish I could go back to John Goodman and explain the confusion. I'm sure he'd see the funny side.

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