Archives for category: Thoughts From the Attic

Is it just me, or do we all hit a point where certain periods in life seem so remote that they seem to have happened to someone else?

Dr. T and I took turns yesterday filling in the gaps of our common history at the job where we met. He provided thumbnail sketches of our former colleagues, and I gave them names. The roster began with a guy who routinely came into the office hours after we were expected (that’s another story) saying that he had been “having breakfast with one of my snitches.”

I am fairly certain that no one bought this, in that although we were investigators, we were not in law enforcement, and there was nothing in our duties which would require the engagement of a “snitch.” It was a running joke among my work friends, particularly since any one of us could avoid having to hit our desk at 8:00 a.m. by phoning in to say we were starting our day “in the field,” a far more elegant (and credible) explanation.

Back to that guy. I’ve always wondered whether he believed that we believed him, or whether he even believed it himself. There is something to said for a rich fantasy life…

Dr. T and I had lunch (delicious)  today at Dos Perros. Their menu, which includes chilaquiles, prompted a Proustian discussion of past trips to Mexico, both together and pre-relationship.

(I should mention at this point that Dr. T and I met on the job at a fairly large government agency  in San Diego.  We both had occasion to cross the border recreationally and for business.)

It was an entertaining conversation, encompassing a roll call of our co-workers (there were some real “characters” there), and touching on the day we met, when he came to work at my office.

As I reminded Dr. T. today, I had a boyfriend on the morning I met him. In one of those Too Cute to Be Believed events, I went home from work that night and got dumped.

I remember the day pretty well after all of these years: I had some sort of car issue, and had to take the bus to work. I was wearing a short sleeved, geranium colored silk top, navy pencil skirt, and caramel colored pumps. (I think I remember this because:  A) I really loved that blouse and B) the irony of feeling so cute in the morning only to go home and get dumped really stays with a girl.)

At lunch time, all those years ago,  I offered to show Dr. T (who was only  “T” in those days) the way to the closest ATM. “Who knew?” I asked him today at lunch.

This little trip down Memory Lane was not only pleasant, but inspiring. Next up: Breakfast With My Snitches…

George Lakoff

George Lakoff has retired as Distinguished Professor of Cognitive Science and Linguistics at the University of California at Berkeley. He is now Director of the Center for the Neural Mind & Society (

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