A Chilliwack man with remarkable memory will help people who are losing theirs.
Braden Adams is a three-time Canadian memory champion who is staging a Memory Marathon fundraiser Aug. 28.
Proceeds from the event will go to the Alzheimer Society of British Columbia.
“As someone who likes to test and push the limits of their own mind and memory, knowing there is a disease out there that can strip that from you is unsettling,” said the 35-year-old Sardis secondary grad. “It is estimated that 70,000 people in B.C. live with dementia currently. In honour of them, I am memorizing 70 decks of cards that day, one for every 1,000 people.”
There are 52 cards in a standard deck. Adams’ plan requires him to memorize 3,640 cards.
On July 6, Adams posted a video to YouTube in which he memorized a single deck in 22.39 seconds and recalled the correct order within a four-minute time limit. If he could maintain that pace it would take less than four hours to complete this marathon.
That, however, is unrealistic.
Memorizing a single deck of cards is easy for Adams, who does it several times a day as part of his training regimen. But the level of difficulty rises with each deck he adds, and this marathon will test him in a way he hasn’t been tested before.
“It is going to take a lot of time, reviewing every deck at least five to six times I think,” Adams said. “I expect the memorization to take six or seven hours at least. Recall will take at least that long, probably longer. I expect to feel quite exhausted after doing 70.
“It’ll be brutal, for sure the toughest, but I think I can do it. I think I’ll for sure hit over 60 decks, but I’m not under any strict time requirements like in a typical memory competition, so I can take my time and be as thorough as possible”
Adams recently tried 40 decks with two hours of memorizing plus recall. He got 39 right and missed just one pair of cards in the 40th deck.
“So that boosted my confidence in this,” he said. “Doing these events each week has been helping me build the mental stamina that will be required.”
Adams will stream the event live on his Twitch channel at twitch.tv/bradenexplosion.
The memorization and recall will be done using memory sports software so it can be viewed in real time as he does it.
To make a donation, visit joinbc.alzheimer.ca/goto/bradenadams
As of Friday, July 17 Adams had raised $235 towards a goal of $5,000.
“My wife and I have both had loved ones affected by dementia like so many of you have,” Adams wrote on his fundraising page. “By supporting the work of the Alzheimer Society of B.C., you are ensuring there is a province-wide organization dedicated to providing services and programs to help families facing dementia have the confidence and skills to maintain quality of life, while supporting the search for the cure.”