Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Modern time/s

Also honoured at the Resurrection House dinner last week was the fabulous Graham Allgood  (yes that is his last name). 

 Like Anno Swain, Graham has been a volunteer at Res. House for 22 years (i.e. since its foundation).

Graham arrived very late to the dinner. He almost missed his own award.

He told us that his car was at an auto-body shop. The work should have been finished last Thursday in time for him to drive to the dinner.  But that was not the case.

So he called a cab.  And he waited, and waited, and waited. He is a very patient and gentle man.

In due course he called the cab company again.  “It’s twenty five of six”  (twenty five to six in the UK) he said “and my cab has not yet arrived".

The dispatcher responded. “That cannot be the case.  I am looking at the computer, and it’s only 5:35”.

Try as he did, Graham could not persuade the dispatcher that “twenty five of six” and “5:35” is the same thing.

Graham saw the funny side of this.  We laughed with him, and were delighted that he is a person of both good humour and dedication to homeless people. His award was more than well deserved.


I believe that there is a serious side to this (and I have written about this before).

Those of us who grew up with analogue clocks and watches were very aware of the passage of time. Old fashioned clocks told us something about the present, the past, and the future.

In the digital age we are aware only of present time.

If our world is shaped by present time alone might we not be in danger of

(a) An inability to learn from the past, and

(b) An inability to plan for the future?

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