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February 11, 2009



Isn't there another mnemonic for the French verbs...Mrs Vandertramp, or something like that?


When my dad taught me to read treble clef, he used the mnemonic, "Every good boy deserves food" for the lines. I always giggle when I think of that.

I use mnemonics all the time. Most of them are meaningful only to me, like the one I use to remember my sisters' respective zip codes. But then some of the real mnemonics -- I either don't remember them or have made mincemeat of them.

For example:

Thirty days have Septober, June, April, and no wonder
All the rest have thirty-one
Except grandma
And *she* smokes a pipe.

No, I haven't been drinking.


I learned "Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge," but Julie learned "Every Good Boy Does Fine."

My mother-in-law makes up words for everyone's phone number. Her best friend's phone number spells BIG FART.

(Maybe you should start drinking.... I'm just saying.)


We had Mr Vandertramp too :)

The 2 I use most often are:

- "Dad, Keep Plucking Chickens Or Face Getting Sacked!", which my biology teacher taught us for the order of taxonomic ranks (domain, kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus, species)

- and "GET SMASHED", which stands for Gallstones, Ethanol/alcohol, Trauma, Steroids, Mumps, Auto-immune disease, Scorpion venom, ERCP, Drugs... all of which can cause pancreatitis. The scorpions are not so common in Ireland, unlike alcohol.

We had some terribly naughty mnemonics when learning anatomy but I couldn't possibly post them on a family-friendly blog! :-D


Dr and mrs Vandertramp. I prefer the house myself. I use a lot of visualization memory tricks and weird ones. (I learned them in a memory class) For example, if I need cranberry juice, paper and bread, I visualize soaking the bread in the juice then using it to write on paper. I prefer to write my lists down, but if I don't have paper, it helps to make up a crazy story in my head.

Green-Eyed Siren

I have nothing to add as far as innovative mnemonics go (although I do stand strong in defense of Many Very Early Men Ate Juicy Steaks Using No Plates to remember the planets and asteroid belt, because I reject the reclassification of Pluto). But I LOVE The Fall of the House of Être. Fantastic.


HOMES--for the Great Lakes??


Somehow I messed up my comment post..!

HOMES - Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie and Superior.


I knew all of these except for My Dirty Aunt Sally, which might explain why I never did well in math. Have you read "The Madonnas of Leningrad?" It's a novel about a woman who worked at the Hermitage Museum during the seige of Leningrad and memorized the works of art on display there. A great read!

Crystal Arcand (3Stairs)

To this day, I cannot screw or unscrew *anything* without thinking, "Righty-tighty; lefty-loosey." It drives me nuts...


Here's another music one: Flies Can Go Down An Empty Bottle, for the order of sharps.
And I have always LOVED this one for the scale of mineral hardness:
Tall Girls Can Flirt And Other Queer Things Can Do
(Talc Gypsum Calcite Fluorite Apatite Orthoclase Quarts Topaz Corundum Diamond)
even though I have never once used it.


WEIRDO for the uses of the subjunctive in Spanish (wishes, emotions, impersonal expressions, recommendations, doubt, ojalá)


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