I'm searching for a word. Nothing to concern you there but hang around; you may be interested. I know I know the word. And as I try to find it I'll give you clues. You might get it before me. This is no stunt. I'm searching as I type.
I can see the word. It is on the spine of three volumes of the many accountancy books on the shelves behind Nick's right shoulder - books which I looked at from time to time during an excellent family meal last Saturday. Nick's my sister's partner. My brother-in-common-law if you like. Except I can't see the word. I can visualise the black book spines and the gold lettering but the word will not come into focus.
It is a word which describes part of Nick's work. He's a banker. Something to do with the swaps market. Not discrepancies but in my head that word lives nearby.
I've tried to remember this word on many previous occasions. I look at it, or hear it, and think, 'This time I won't forget.' Trouble is, it is so irrelevant a word to my life I never encounter it again until the next time I need it (normally when I am explaining to someone what it is that Nick actually does) and then it's gone.
I have a wordy memory. I've tried all the clever visualising tricks for remembering names but none of them work for me. But I am pretty good with names. It just takes a moment or two.
Say you're called Dan Aggerman. That may be a real person I've remembered so sorry to pick on you if you are called that, Dan. I will look at you and a name will pop into my head. Say, John Sackerman. I'll feel slightly strange about that because it will sound right but I'll know it won't be right. It won't be a match. Then, either by a process of going through other Christian names, or by trying not to remember too hard, or just playing with the sounds a bit, I'll get it. Ron Aggerman, Dick Ackerman, no Dan, yes, yes, yes Dan, Dan Ackerman, Ackman, Achman, Aggerman, Yes! Hi Dan, how are you?
If I get a moment to survey a room before I engage in conversation I can normally kick-start this process. If someone I know well comes up to me in a place where I don't normally meet them then I have to bluff for a bit. I hate it when people, at this stage, tell me 'You don't know who I am do you?' Because I am still processing. I know some things about who you are but your name isn't one of them yet. Is it that I know a lot of people? Possibly.
Ubiquities? No that's wrong too. The word I want concerns things you trade. Options of a sort.
There used to be a comic cartoon in the Beezer called the Numbskulls. These were little humans who lived inside the head and body of an adult human. I find this anthropomorphism useful. My mind has a small guy in a grey lab coat who does the filing. At the moment he is looking for a word in the rarely used financial management section and is blowing dust off words such as accountancy, budgeting and solvent. It's not there.
The fact that I mentioned discrepancy and ubiquity tells me that the word I want is filed, almost certainly, in the posh-words-I-use-when-showing-off section. Probably how I stumbled across anthropomorphism.
It's not happening so I'm going to cheat. Google "swaps and options."
Language is fascinating. My Dad had a stroke. He lost some comedy timing but very little language skill. The University of Birmingham did a bit of research, using him to help establish exactly what part of our brains control which bits of language. I can't have had a stroke because I've always been like this.
Google gives me a page of sites about trading. Almost every one includes my word. There it is. Derivatives. Now where shall I keep it? Perhaps in the cookery section. At least I'll bump into it more regularly and it describes the partial-originality of my kitchen work well.
Tonight's meal will be so derivative. Thank you for helping me get through this.