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Category: Humans

Spring Back, Fall Forward
Spring back, fall forward. That’s the mnemonic device I use to remember how to set the clocks around daylight savings. And it’s worked pretty well all these years.

Sort of. To be honest, I guess I’d have to say that there are times when something goes haywire with this system. Well, every time, actually. Usually, all my clocks end up two hours off for a few days afterward. I must be doing something wrong, I suppose.

Eventually, I end up looking at my computer and set all my clocks to that time, and I’m fine after that. It’s pretty frustrating, but I figure it doesn’t really matter anyway. Time, after all, is a purely human construct. You won’t find Mother Nature looking at her Bulova to see what time to start Spring. You won’t find Satan checking his Rolex Submariner to count the seconds until the Apocalypse. And I don’t think God will be setting his Westclox Big Ben to remind Him that it’s Judgment Day.

We are the ones who need time — to help us keep the order of events straight, to measure change, and to know when to take the souffle out of the oven. The rest of the universe runs in spite of time, not because of it. Mother Nature, for instance, relies on a whole system of complex organic markers when deciding to pull the trigger on that first robin or crocus or high country thaw. It’s a process more complicated than mere humans can understand. She’s plugged into the cosmic All One in a way that we never will be.

Even the world we do understand seems to defy the precise demands of time. We know that time flies sometimes; at other times, it crawls. They have yet to make a clock that can measure those kinds of variables. And when we go fast, those same clocks will record different times than other clocks record when we are standing still. And when we approach the speed of light, time will seem to stop altogether. My Timex would be irrelevant in such a situation.

So time is a made-up thing. It has no inherent importance other than what we assign to it. And so it is with Daylight Savings Time.

I will not give up on my mnemonic helper, because I am determined to get it right. Spring back, fall forward — it’s so simple! Next Fall for sure! Not that it matters.
One More Time
I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before, but for the last few years I have been working on a time machine. It’s pretty far along, too. I’m in the process of running down one or two final bugs at this point, though I’m not sure how long that will take.

I’m not so interested in going forward in time, really. I suppose that getting a peek at the future might allow me to conduct some lucrative off-track betting on my return to the present, but no. Untold wealth is kind of appealing, but I’m scared silly of what else I might find in the future.

The idea for me is to go back in time and make a few corrections. Nothing big, really. I don’t want to tackle Lee Harvey Oswald in the Book Depository just before he assassinates JFK or kill baby Hitler in his crib. I’ll leave that to other, more heroic time travelers. I intend to concentrate on my own mistakes, none of which were particularly noteworthy to anyone but me.

Mostly, I just want to get rid of my regret. It uses up a surprisingly large amount of my time, even though some of those mess-ups happened years, even decades ago. I have no doubt that the other people affected by these mistakes have long since forgotten about them. I freely admit that this is mostly about my hang-ups, not theirs. But it’s my invention, after all, so I don’t feel too guilty about it.

As my work stands right now, the go-back-and-change-things part is mostly solved. That was surprisingly easy, as it turned out. It’s the bugs that are proving to be the real challenge. Take, for instance, the unforeseen-consequences bug. What if the small change I have in mind precipitates another change — an unwanted one — that screws things up here in the present? That situation might force me to go back again and do some fine tuning…which might require even finer tuning, and so on. I might end up never having the chance to enjoy my new, regret-free existence.

And then, there’s the innocent-bystander bug. Even though this whole project is about me, my little changes might tangle up the personal timelines of others. That would only lead to more regret, thereby defeating the whole purpose of this exercise.

And so, the work continues. I am, as I say, very close to the finish line with this project. Indeed, it could come at any time. But there’s no rush, right? Once I have a time machine, I can always travel back and invent it in the past.
Let Me Make My Position Clear
I have read with great interest the reference materials you have kindly sent to me.

Be assured that I have combed through this bibliography of source materials and found the sheer volume and density of your substantiations to be quite impressive. Likewise, I was moved by your choices of metaphor to illustrate your points and by the glittering prose you have employed to argue them. The precision and clarity of your exposition is flawless.

Furthermore, I have dared to follow your reasoning wherever it has led me, even into realms I never imagined I would travel. The journey has been enlightening and provocative — so much so, that I have been forced to give a lot of long, hard thought to your arguments. Allow me to acknowledge the strength, conviction, and thorough research you have given your conclusions.

That said, I still think you’ve got your head up your ass.
Nice to Meet You
Now that we’ve
Been introduced
And spoken
In such breadth
Of matters
Both profound
And inane

Now that we’ve
Been introduced
And have shared
In such depth
Our feelings
Both sacred
And profane

Now that we’ve
Been introduced
And bared our
Souls this way
I can ask
My dear friend
What's your name?
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Trump supporters are people who know what they believe.
~ JC, Bonny Doon