Time: the Irresistible Force
It Leaps Ahead, It Falls Back, It Leaps ahead again
Time is something without substance or form, something you can’t touch or hold. You can always use more of it or you can waste it, save it, even alter it. Every one of us is governed by it, but what is it? Einstein probably had it right when he said, “The only reason for time is so that everything doesn’t happen at once.” It drags so painfully slowly for the youngster waiting for the buzzer to announce that school’s out, yet it races at breakneck speed for the reporter trying to make the deadline with his paper. Life is so hectic, that you’d think time was in short supply! The phrase of the decade: We are all time starved. No we’re not! We have put ourselves on a time starvation diet by trying, and/or allowing others, to cram more activity into our time allotment than there is room for. This is the weekend of a time-cramming event of staggering proportions! We change to daylight savings time on Saturday night/ Sunday morning. Get set for about three days of disconnection, when you’ll stumble around, sleep deprived, bumping into things, spilling your coffee, falling off your high heels, getting your tie caught in the copier, and making your dog or cat care about Daylight Savings Time (although it may mean more squirrels to chase). Now here’s the really bad news: - A Swedish study in 2008 found that the risk of having a heart attack increases in the first three days after switching to DST in the spring. - Traffic accidents increase on the Monday following the start of DST. Tired drivers are the main reason – a great excuse for staying home in bed for an extra day (or three) – call it dislocation days (daze)! All that and more from moving your wake/ sleep cycle and everything in between forward just sixty minutes, one hour, just to enjoy the extra hours of daylight, that will dramatically increase until June 21, the longest day, after which (and here’s the depressing part) the days begin to wither away again in the downward spiral to winter. ARRRRRRHHHHGGGGGGG!
Whose fault is it anyway?
Last week I wrote that the Romans didn’t even number all the days of the week, and as for the time of day, it was available when the sun shone on the sundial, or by someone reckoning where the sun was in the sky. This isn’t much of a problem if you’re a shepherd. Ovines may be Ram tough, but ewe know they’re sheepish about what time of day it is.
It’s all the fault of railroad! When you have to catch a train and connect with another one, all of a sudden it’s important. Then like a plague it spreads until your employer uses the same reasoning to get everyone to show up for work at the same time. Damn! There’s always someone who wants to spoil a good thing. Anyway Sir Sandford Fleming, Canada’s foremost railway surveyor and construction engineer of the 19th-century, became an advocate of time zones after being stuck overnight in a railway station because of time confusion. His initial efforts led to the adoption of the time zones used by the railways in 1883 and the global time zones used today. Then shazzam! The next thing you know, we’re living in a 24/7 world, where “wait a sec” means anything up to ½ hour. Did you notice that the more precise time required us to be, the more rebellious we become? “I’ll be with you in a moment,” could expand to have you wait until your old age security cheque arrives. Manyana (I don’t have a squiggly thing to put over the n) means sometime between today and the 12th of never. So as you approach the doorway to the joys of summer days, you must first run the gauntlet of pollen allergies, clogged sinuses, adjusting yours and Fido’s walking, sleeping and feeding schedules. Take heart because you get the hour returned, without interest, on November 6. Doesn’t that feel better? So I’ll leave you now with a couple of timely thoughts; Time is a great teacher, unfortunately it kills all of its pupils, Louis Berlioz, AND, No man goes before his time, unless his boss leaves early – Groucho Marx Time out!