You remember that place next to the restaurant we liked

This is an example of “couplespeak.” After years of marriage, it is entirely possible the other member of the couple will know precisely where the speaker is meaning. And, neither may actually remember the name of the place or the restaurant used as the landmark. This kind of conversation can surface in a multitude of ways. Here are a few more examples.

Oh, she is that actress who starred in the action movie with the guy we like.

This one usually requires some stumbling add-ons. Because the responding question will usually be, “Which movie are you talking about?” Nowadays, with Google, it is possible to come up with names and trace the movie to the other star. Yet, it is possible for the spouse to know after some add-on suggestions, who the actress and actor are.

Why don’t you make that casserole you made when we had some folks over?

Between the two, the name of the other couple can be surfaced which will help with the mental Rolodex of recipe names. Otherwise, it will be an ingredient hinting exercise. “I remembered it was a chicken and sausage dish.”

Was it Johnny, Susie or Joey that had the whooping cough or was it the croup?

This is not a fill in the blank question like the others. But, if you are a parent of more than one child, some of the younger child illnesses blend together. Your kids will laugh at you if you don’t remember, but they will cease laughing when it happens to them as parents. Also, the diseases do get mixed up some, which is why you keep a list.

What is the name of that singer that sounds like the woman we heard on the American Idol or The Voice?”

It is the “name that person questions” that come up the most. We know both of us know her, yet neither can recall her name. We do need to find some hint that will jog memory or facilitate the Google search.

To others, it will appear we have no sense at all. If you told someone that you could not remember a popular person or place, the other person would think you were crazy. “How can you not know that?” Yet, all couples will eventually migrate to this couplespeak at some point.

Tell me a few of your examples. Which ones did I not capture? When did you first notice this trend?


12 thoughts on “You remember that place next to the restaurant we liked

  1. It’s funny how some of us have a memory for certain things, others remember different things. More than once, my husband and I have returned to some restaurant that he barely, if at all, remembers going to. Because those types of experiences stick with me, I can usually tell him what he ordered when we were last there. Then, he always asks, “did I like it?” Cracks me up.

  2. You gotta love it! My wife and I do this all the time. If anyone else heard us they would think we were crazy. An example comes to mind. The other night we were watching a British mystery on PBS and we both recognized one of the actors. I couldn’t place him, but my wife said “oh, you remember him. He’s the one who stole the birds eggs.” I knew exactly who she was referring to and which episode of another mystery we had seen and enjoyed years before. Funny stuff! Well done.

  3. Note to Readers: Another opportunity for our version of Couplespeak is guess the unseen voice on the commercials. It is not unusual for us to fumble around with who that might be without remembering his or her name. Eventually, we will stumble onto John Cusack, Dennis Leary or whomever, as examples, but more famous and less famous actors are being used, so we have more chances to guess.

  4. My husband and I do this every day! Another thing we do is divide our remembering. I remember doctor’s appointments and social obligations. He always remembers whether or not we have seen a movie and he is also better at remembering our anniversary. He teases me for my terrible memory about movies, because I’ll often rent one that we have already seen. I say I have no room for trivial things in my crowded brain. He, on the other hand, will forget what I asked him to do in about 2 minutes. He may go to get me a glass of water and come back with a piece of pie for himself, glass of ice still sitting on the kitchen counter. We also know each other’s “looks” and have a pretty good system of non-verbal communication. Good stuff!

    • Amaya, that is so funny. I often forget why I got up, leaving behind what I intended to do. Renting the same movie is something we have done as well. I love the shared memory. Together, you remember much more. Thanks for stopping by. Keith

  5. So true! Rom can remember the full plot of every movie he’s ever seen, and every band member who’s been in every band he likes (a large number). But when it comes to daily or local things, he needs a lot of cues. I am good wth those, but struggle to remember what happened in any given movie or book, and I don’t have much ability to memorize things (like song lyrics or the Periodic Table)!

    • Sounds like you yin and yang like Amaya and her husband do in her comments. But, you probably end up saying a lot, “honey that’s great, now could you take out the trash.”

  6. Note to Readers: Just tonight, we set up a couples date with good friends to a restaurant that none of us knew the name….you know the place behind Michaels at the….You remember, we went there after the blood drive.

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