and entering

Freshman Has Her Name On the Tip of His Tongue

"Maybe if I just shout out nonsense sounds, she'll think I'm saying her name," O'Connor thought.

CAMBRIDGE, MA — After unwittingly eliciting eye contact from a vaguely familiar girl across the cafeteria, local freshman Brian O'Connor descended into panic. “What on earth is her name? Was she in my international pre-orientation program?” introspected O'Connor. Maintaining a blank gaze into the semi-recognized girl’s eyes, he dove into the recesses of his memory, “Did it start with an A? Aliya? Ayesha? Ashley? It could have been a C? I think it was one of those unisex names like Cameron. But I am also pretty sure it rhymed with kale. Shit.”

With little hope of remembering her name, he considered alternatives. “I could try the ambiguous ‘Hey you’, but then she would know I forgot her name. I would be that guy," he mused. "Probabilistically, I could hedge my bets with the more generic names. Maybe Pam? But then again, the costs of misnaming her far outweigh the benefits of getting her name right.” 

Psychology professor Corey Reynolds weighed in on the situation. “It is very rare that the hippocampus encodes a person’s name into the long-term memory storage after just one encounter. Studies indicate that in the first encounter freshmen are so busy thinking about how they can weave their accomplishments into the conversation that they entirely ignore the other person’s introduction," he explained. "However, after forgetting despite multiple encounters, O'Connor is just a self-absorbed asshole.”

As the couple neared each other, O'Connor eventually calmed himself down. “I’m overthinking this. She probably won’t remember my name either—I am a pretty non-descript dude. I’ll just wave. It’s all about confidence.”

As he was about to wave, she interrupted, shouting, “Hey, Brian Harrison O'Connor!” A dumbstruck O'Connor has yet to figure out how she knows his middle name.

At press time, sources claim to have seen O'Connor spending hours at the library flipping through the freshman register.

Image source: University of the Fraser Valley/Flickr
© 2015