When I was working and attending a lot of meetings, my notes didn't look like anyone else's. I started with the date or topic of the meeting in the middle of a sheet of regular lined binder paper, and I created a web of all the important information with arrows and bubbles all over the page. It made much more sense to me than listing things in a line down the page. My coworkers used to laugh about my "notes". I realize now that that must be what the inside of my head looks like. And I think it's hereditary.
This morning I made a quick trip into Firstborn's classroom because he's come home several days in a row now without his agenda book, which is what the school uses to communicate day-to-day bits of information for parents. He insisted that it had just disappeared off the face of the earth and was lost forever (please note: I use this argument on the Captain three times a week, and he usually finds whatever I'm looking for in under a minute). When I opened up his desk and saw that the inside looked like someone had set off a grenade in there, I had a flashback.
When I was in first grade, my teacher had a motivational tool called the "Fire Hat". Every Monday we'd all come in hoping the red plastic firefighter's hat was sitting on our desk for one of us to wear the whole week, indicating that we'd had the cleanest, neatest desk the Friday before. The other kids used to tell me I'd never get the fire hat because I had the messiest desk in the room (DUH! Way to state the obvious, guys!). The very last week of school came before summer vacation, and there was the Fire Hat on my desk, a pitiful show of mercy for the one kid who hadn't won it all year.
I think it might be time to teach my little absent-minded professor a few organizational strategies...