Wednesday, January 29, 2003


At last count, I had 13 clocks in my house...not including watches. There might be more hidden in drawers and places.

When I was a child we had one clock but my mother had this theory that if she set it in advance we would never be late. (We were always late. I almost got thrown out of Catholic school for being tardy so many times.) Obviously, if you set the clock at the same time you will just subtract the minutes. So she tried to trick herself and would set it irregularly in advance so she would never be sure what time it was exactly.

We also had some clocks that didn't work right. In other words, I never knew exactly what time it was.

Very early in life I learned the phone number to the 'exact time' recording. (I don't think they have this anymore! Why?!?) I used to call it frequently. Sometimes I would call it if I was lonely or bored.

Now the clocks in my house are all set at different times. Only slightly early...a few a bit more than slightly. I also have problems waking up in the morning. There was a period where I decided to defy daylight savings time--which I regard as absurd--and refused to change the clocks. Of course, I did subtract an hour as one can't operate entirely in one's own time zone. Sometimes when people came over for parties or dinner they would become alarmed that it was later than they expected it to be. They didn't always get it--they seemed to think clocks should be set at the correct, official time. I like my clocks to challenge me a bit.

A walk through time...sponsored by the U.S. government

I have 5 alarm clocks (actually I have 6 but I rely only on 3 major ones). My former housemate used to wake me up every morning. (Sometimes she even made me fruit salad.) When she moved out, she called me in the morning for a whole year. What a pal! For some reason, the phone's ringing works when an alarm clock doesn't. However, it has to be an actual person on the other end. If I know that it is a wake up call, I will sleep through it. Responsibility to an actual human being is perhaps the only thing that can rouse me to consciousness.

My husband has taken over the calling-me in the morning and waking me up duties. He even makes me coffee most days. Now it's obvious why I will love this man until the day I die.

In any case, I got a cel phone recently. It disturbed me for some reason to have the cel phone time set at the wrong time. I don't know why. I guess it felt like the cel phone should 'know' what time it is. Then...gradually...I started setting my watch at the right time. I even became somewhat obsessive...Checking the U.S. government time and trying to set my Timex so that it was correct to the second.

It was sad...because when I was in Europe I was falling asleep at 9 p.m. and waking up at 5 a.m. It was very exciting! I finally had a normal biological clock thing going on. I vowed to continue it but I'm sad to say I'm off again and fell asleep in my office at the end of the work day. I woke up at 8:30 tonight with my head on my desk. My hand fell asleep. Shucks.


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