Like many baby boomers upon retirement I looked for creative inspiration once freed from the shackles of work. Especially as a former chess champion whose forte was logic the idea to create a story or a sense of creative purpose was appealing.
I had previously dabbled in such pursuits creating Musical Maestro at TV Writer’s Vault in Canada which was taken up by KingFisher Productions and later developed into “Don’t forget the lyrics” which was syndicated worldwide. Also produced a boardgame that unbeknown to me at the time was almost a carbon copy of TriBond, a boardgame Hall of Famer!
And then I collaborated with a Danish colleague producing SpinningTornado.com, the world’s first affiliate program exchange some 20 odd years ago - ahead of it’s time really. Also an early video network Leadsbyvideo.com - again well ahead of it’s time. So I guess you could say I’ve always considered myself an ideas man without ever really following through in a meaningful way. Until now.
Then it happened, quite by accident! One day, in replying to my cousin's 60th birthday invitation I mistakenly signed off ike and ernie instead of Mike and Bernie and a genesis formed in my brain, one involving the use of triggers to cut through the abstract.
The expansion of this idea or concept for "Memory Games for Mature Minds" was thus born and came from caring for my mother suffering from early stage Alzheimers and looking for ways to stimulate her mind and maintain engagement. I'm happy to report that she is doing well (and still playing) and after further testing through friends and family the concept has expanded to what it has become today.
In fact, an interesting interaction took place during one of Mum’s “music pharmacy” sessions which she used to attend with around 8-10 other seniors some who were not dementia sufferers. As you know music is a powerful trigger for evoking memories and is generally recognised as a beneficial exercise as we age. My role during these sessions was generally to pass out song sheets and instruments but primarily as “tea lady” for the 15 minute afternoon tea break. One day I decided to bring some of the flash expression cards used in one of the games as entertainment during the tea break and was amazed at the level of response, so much so that the music teacher decided to continue with it that day instead of the music therapy! After that I decided to try and commercialize the concept as the proof was most definitely in the pudding!
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20 Sep, 2022