When the clocks go back…

October 31, 2010

…which they did last Sunday morning, I suppose I  am just as disoriented as the next person. Certainly it varies that dreary first hour at work on Monday mornings, with endless comic tales of arriving an hour early or an hour late for some crucial Sunday morning event.

Actually I had trained my brain last night to remind me when I woke up that I must put the clocks back. Spring forward, fall back. Hurrah for  some American genius (a word of explanation: what you call ‘fall’ we call ‘autumn’, because, frankly, it is. Our leaves do indeed fall,  but lots of other things happen as well, like it gets colder, the migrant birds disappear, and schools have half term. It’s a necessary but not a sufficient condition, if I remember my logic lessons  rightly).

Anyway, up I jolly well woke at 8.30 as before, which has now magically become 7.30.  First is my nice old-fashioned alarm clock. I start by accidentally resetting the alarm, then use the correct button to wind it back an hour. I drag on a dressing gown, and totter the five steps across  to the cooker (a Neff, for cooker-geeks) with its glowing light that tells me the time in the dark of the night. I try to remember whether to press the button with the hand on it, or the one with a plus sign. Eventually, by process of elimination, I get it right, and in synch with the alarm clock.

Next up, as you say in America, is my very expensive and now quite antique Linn stereo, bought in a rush-of-blood moment some time in the late 90s and salvaged from my marriage to the peacock lady. This is, if anything, more complicated. You have to find some buttons down at the bottom of the remote, and fiddle with them until the display on the front of the long-defunct CD player ticks some green letters across its black face. That is OK. For some reason both the electronic clocks seem to have lost 5 minutes since I last reset them, which is strangely reassuring, almost as if they are …what’s the word… analogue.

Hurrah. All done. I sit down and turn on my laptop. I flick through some emails, and while doing so, my eyes flick down to the clock at the bottom of the screen. It is showing 9.30 instead of 8.30. Bloody machines, can’t they keep up, I think? Then a slow sinking feeling starts in the pit of my stomach. i check my iPhone. 9.31. Bugger. I turn on the TV, looking for a clock, and finally find it. 9.32.

Sod it. It must be next week that the clocks fall back. I go and fill the kettle. At least it doesn’t have a clock on it.

Punchline; it’s next Saturday.


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