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Everyday Ageism

Am I going doolally?

(33 Posts)
TriciaF Wed 08-Feb-17 10:48:40

I've always had a tendency to think laterally, go off at a tangent, and I seem to be getting worse. Can't stick to the point.I'm becoming more scatty in my old age.
It was brought home to me when I was (mildly) rebuked on a gardening forum I belong to - "try to give only relevant replies!"
Any tips for controlling my mind?

rosesarered Wed 08-Feb-17 10:57:09

Yes, don't go on forums...there are some posters (here) using the buzzword of 'whataboutery' at every opportunity.Or if you do, be prepared for rebukes, mild or otherwise.I think that people who think laterally have interesting minds.smile so don't change just to please others.
Of course, if you were answering a question ( say) on how best to prune a photinia, and you then gave a rambling discourse on how late the postman arrives these days, that would be different.grin

Teetime Wed 08-Feb-17 10:58:13

They sound very stuffy - ignore and continue to be a Rambling Rose. smile

NanaandGrampy Wed 08-Feb-17 10:59:23

I think sometimes going off tangent gives context to an answer or indicates your level of experience.

I've never heard that buzzword rose , I'm obviously not on those threads smile .....thank goodness !

grandMattie Wed 08-Feb-17 11:09:41

What a lovely word, rose, thank you. I think I shall steal use it. smile
As Oscar Wilde put it, "Be yourself, everyone else is already taken". Forget about changing just because it annoys other people. also what annoys them might be their own problem!

Greyduster Wed 08-Feb-17 11:21:11

Tell them your replies are relevant - to you! 😊

Elrel Wed 08-Feb-17 12:10:20

I'm always connecting something my family has said to something else in my head then coming out with an apparently unrelated comment. If challenged I explain my train of thought. This usually prompts baffled silence or mild hysteria. Must learn to keep my tangential thoughts to myself. But where's the fun in that?

ninathenana Wed 08-Feb-17 12:18:45

I've never seen 'whataboutery' here or anywhere else confused

Ana Wed 08-Feb-17 12:23:59

It's becoming popular on the political threads, nina. As is GFery (don't ask!)

Mair Wed 08-Feb-17 12:29:54

Newspeak Ana!
They're not only dictating which words we should use, but inventing new ones.

Rigby46 Wed 08-Feb-17 15:19:55

Going off at a tangent, thinking laterally is one thing ( well two things actually) but whataboutery is another thing altogether.

TriciaF Wed 08-Feb-17 15:55:05

Re-reading, I think it was a cultural/language thing. It's a french forum.
The french do seem to be rather inflexible about rules. But ignore them in private!
Elrel - that's what I'm like.

TriciaF Thu 09-Feb-17 10:11:40

Thanks for the replies - I've decided to leave that forum. There's a group of "experts" who seem to be the only ones allowed to answer questions.Not a sociable place.

silverlining48 Thu 09-Feb-17 10:14:14

I go off at a tangent often, often thinking its an interesting sude track, but my problem is remembering the thing i wanted to say in the first place. I can then check if the person i am talking with has concentrated sufficiently on our conversation and can bring me back on topic. And its getting worse.......😱

annifrance Thu 09-Feb-17 12:15:08

Hi Tricia F. Ever tried a French committee? I did once, managed 2 meetings at which people walked out, women literally spitting at each other. So I left!!

My friend has 'trained' the committee she is on to do it the English way. the French just go off at tangents all the time, about four different conversations going on around the table. This friend got them all to address all points to the Chair and one at a time. Now that committee works and gets things done!

In every day life I think it is fine to ramble. I have always been known to have a butterfly mind. it shows I'm interested in lots of things.

Welshwife Thu 09-Feb-17 12:23:57

Oh Annie we were on a local French Committee about the arrangements for a concert. - you would think it would be simple enough - the other British lady said to me - I feel I have walked onto the set of a farce! - To make it more difficult there were two Jean-Pierres onthe committee. It was agreed about meeting to put out all the chairs etc out and we dutifully turned up and no one else - we found them in the local café!!

sarahellenwhitney Thu 09-Feb-17 12:34:00

Silverlining 48
You and me both.
My fault, I was told by my boss in my younger working life, was not giving enough verbal output and was I now know due to a fear of going 'off course'.
I am sure there are many of us.

radicalnan Thu 09-Feb-17 13:29:57

What's life? without a tangent.

GadaboutGran Thu 09-Feb-17 13:58:35

I'm a lateral thinker & go off on tangents so have great conversations with my very lateral ADHD SiL. But the rest of the family are very literal & linear so often have no idea what I'm going on about. Even I used to lose the thread with my late lateral stiry-telling Mum so I realise you have to be disciplined sometimes for the sake of good communication. I do edit posts (but won't bother this time) & I've found posting in forums has helped me learn how keep to the point. I've been accused of confusing people on GN so I'm trying hard.

Luckygirl Thu 09-Feb-17 14:15:16

"Rambling Rose" - I like that!!

Going off at tangents is the essence of creativity - you stick to your guns! smile

TriciaF Thu 09-Feb-17 14:24:23

grinto fellow lateral thinkers!
What's at the back of my mind though whether becoming more scatty is the onset of dementia? But I think not because rigid thinkers also develop dementia, they just become more stubborn.
Also most of us have been like it all our lives.
Anni no I haven't been on a committee here, but I know an english person who has, and she says the same as you about it.
The nearest I've attended was a village meeting to explain the new laws about getting rid of sewage. Everyone was up in arms that they couldn't spray it on their fields (I think some still do.)

VIOLETTE Thu 09-Feb-17 15:01:04

I have found living in rural France that laws only apply to incomers ,,,,,like the rule for bonfires only at certain times ......one ancient inhabitant of the village burns everything all the time ...have to keep all windows and doors shut in summer when it is a beautiful afternoon and we would like to sit out in the garden ......the Mairie posts the 'rules' in the boit de poste ....new residents (a lot of retirees from Paris) abide by them ....the natives don't and if you say anything you just get the gallic shrug ! Next time I am seriously thinking of taking my tree cuttings to said neighbour instead of dutifully driving 12 km there and 12km back to the dechetterie ...sometimes in summer two or three times a week ! who is mad ...him or me ? I bet if I tried it someone from the Mairie would soon be round ..or the Gendarmerie with a hefty fine !! I belong (as you know !) to several forums (fora ?) both English and French ..... I love a fight ! smile

TriciaF Thu 09-Feb-17 16:08:29

Violette wrote:
" I love a fight ! smile"
I would love to argue back with the person who rebuked me, but my written french isn't good enough.
As you imply, it's one rule for les étrangers and another for les français. In some places anyway.

Ramblingrose22 Thu 09-Feb-17 17:39:36

Now it will be apparent why I chose my name on here!!!

It is good to know that I am not the only one with a butterfly mind that goes off on tangents. TriciaF - I've always been that way. It's nothing to do with dementia.

The problem is that people say to me "Hang on - what that got to do with [the original subject of the conversation]"!

I suppose one solution is to explain the link up front or people just lose patience!

I am thinking of starting a blog as an outlet for my lateral thoughts.

Elrel Thu 09-Feb-17 17:52:48

Rose, Tricia, Silverlining - it seems I'm in good company here. I go off into verbal parentheses in telling an anecdote and forget where I was heading. I have been known to wail 'But that bit was in brackets, couldn't you tell?'
Maybe I'd better shut up and stick to written and online expression of my fascinating observations 🙄