Memory game while traveling

I’m traveling and have very limited time to get this column finished. That’s why I’ve asked the rest of the travelers who are on this trip to assist with this topic. We dug deep into our memories to come up with the following tricks we have learned over time to help us remember a variety of different things. Some helpful, some silly. Some you may have heard of, and others may be new to you.

To recall the days in a month (since they are not all the same), we came up with two methods of remembering. The first is a poem. It reads, “Thirty days hath September, April, June and November. All the rest have 31 except February to which we 28 assign and leap year brings it 29.” The other method is to use your knuckles. Using your four fingers, not thumb, start with the knuckle on your pointer finger. Assign that one January. February is the indent between the pointer finger and middle finger. March is the middle finger’s knuckle, and so on. When you get to the pinky knuckle you will be at July. Double up on that one, and make it August as well. Then make your way back to the pointer finger’s knuckle. The knuckle months have 31 days, the indents have 30 days. Except February of course. You’re on your own to remember that one with this method.

How do you remember the colors of a rainbow? The colors are always in the same and in the same order. Just remember the name, Roy G. Biv. Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet. I promise. Check it out the next rainbow you see.

You probably learned about the planets in elementary school. To remember the names of them, use the sentence, “My very eager mother just served us nine pizzas.” Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto (although not a planet any longer, we can’t leave Pluto out).

Spelling is a struggle for many. One of the trickiest letter combinations in the English language seems to be words with an, “i” and an “e” side by side. To keep it straight, simply remember the catchy poem, “I before E except after C, or when sounding like, ‘a’ as in neighbor or weigh.”

Living in Michigan, we are surrounded by the Great Lakes and all their beauty. But sometimes remembering the Great Lakes can be difficult. Until you think about it using the word homes. Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Eerie, Superior. Easy as that!

This one is probably very well-known. When turning the lid of a jar or screwing a screw in or out, remember, “righty tighty, lefty loosey,” to determine which way to turn it, depending on your goal.

You may not find yourself in a cave or cavern often, but the next time you do, remember the difference between stalactites and stalagmites with this helpful hint. Stalactites hold tight to the ceiling, and you might trip over a stalagmite.

We recently experienced the switch in clocks due to daylight saving time. How do you remember if you move ahead or back in the spring and fall? It’s simple. Remember we always spring ahead and fall back.

Do you know which of the following you eat, and which is geography when it comes to dessert and desert? With this trick, it is simple to remember the difference. A dessert has the letter s twice, just as you might have two scoops of ice cream for dessert. That leaves desert as the dry, sandy, hot place.

This was a fun exercise to pass the time on one of our bus transfers from one city to another. I must thank my travel partners for their assistance with this. If I have trouble remembering who helped me, I will simply remember, “Adventures make memories, seek delightfully robust discoveries” (Annette, Mary, Michelle, Sherrie, Donna, Ruth, and Dorothy — thank you).

Jackie Krawczak is president/CEO of the Alpena Area Chamber of Commerce. Her column runs bi-weekly on Thursdays. Follow Jackie on Twitter @jkrawczak.