1.5 • Recycling Peg Words
This document addresses an issue that arises after memorizing and using peg words for a while: What happens if you start using the same peg words to memorize lots of different things… can you use the same words over and over, or do you get confused? Here is an Email message from a Memory Page reader and my response.
” One more question; then I’ll quit bugging you. Did you use the same pegs to remember:countries/capitals, area codes, the 10 Egyptian plagues from Exodus,the 7 churches in Revelation 2 & 3, the 12 stone foundations from Revelation 21? If so, how do you keep them straight? That is five things per peg. So each peg would have five different pictures associate with it?”
Yes, all use the same pegs. For the plagues, I actually used 91-99 (tenth plague not memorized because I already know it), but 91-99 is also shared with area codes and countries.
So far, I haven’t had much of a problem distinguishing between them. I think part of it is because I already have an idea of what the picture will be. The foundations one is easy because there is a colored stone in each picture, so when, for example, I want the 8th foundation, I think of a picture that has ivy and gemstone(s) together. I have multiple ivy pictures, but only one with gemstones.
For countries vs. area codes, I’m really not sure how I do it. For 53 (lime), I have two pictures:
- A lime is being squeezed in the air, and the juice is falling into the river Thames (United Kingdom/London). As this happens, a wizard with a magic wand (Rwanda) is observing, but someone gives him a malicious kick and he ends up in a gully (Ki-gali).
- A cinnamon stick (Cincinnati=513) is jammed into the lime, which is then placed into an ore cart (Oregon=503) completely filled with other limes. Oregon recently got a new area code, so I’ve mentally enhanced the picture by picturing the same ore cart, but the left side is filled with limes and the right side is empty. Since it is the port side that is filled, then I know I’m dealing with the Portland, Oregon region (as opposed to Eugene=541, but that’s in the 54 picture).
Somehow I just “know” that the first is the country lime picture and the second is the area codes lime picture. Once I get the right one, then following the remaining links is even easier. I think practice is how it really works. The ultimate goal is to learn the countries/capitals or area codes, not the pictures. Eventually I start recalling information by diving right into the middle of a link or even without any pictures at all. That, I think, is the kind of memory that everyone hopes for.