Search This Blog

Friday, May 21, 2010

Time Is On My Side. The Clock, However, Is Not.

Maybe this makes me an idiot, but I still struggle to read analog clocks. 

I learned very early on that the TV I watched happened in half hour increments that started or ended when the big hand sat on the 6.  It was something natural that I somehow was able to apply to everything else in my 6-year-old world so that when my mom mentioned that our drive to Sea World would take an hour and a half, I was able to grasp the concept of that time as two Magilla Gorillas and a Grape Ape. It was a method of relating time and of timekeeping. I'd know my dad was late coming home from work if Punky Brewster was over and my dad hadn't walked in the door.

I still use this method in my adult life.  If I'm taking a late lunch break, I know I can watch whatever is left of the afternoon rerun of the Daily Show and a full Colbert Report before I have to be back at my desk.  If I have dishes to wash, I have to start washing by the time Stephen starts his interview segment. I'm sometimes thrown for a loop when he's got a musical guest or multiple interviews in a single episode... but I adapt.  TV time is still easier for me to figure than analog clock time.

When I worked at Disneyland, I got pretty good at reading people's wrist watches from a distance.  That's how I'd be able to tell how long I had left of my time on set and when I needed to be back for my break (this was in the days when we'd go out and do sets around the castle, with no shade and no hosts... I'm pretty sure the motto back then was, fend for yourself princess!) but because of the way our sets were scheduled, I only needed to pay attention to the second hand and get a rough idea of where it was - the "o-clock" the 15, the 30 or the 45 - that and my body was pretty tuned to what an hour felt like. An episode of the X-Files plus commercials.

Even little kids have tried to teach me their little mnemonic devices to remember how to read an analog clock quickly to no avail.  Yah. I have wanted kick said little kids in the shins.  Neener-neener.

Anyhow. I think I've finally figured out why I can't seem to get on top of this analog clock reading thing... and it turns out, it's not my fault. 

When I was in the 6th grade I wrote an essay for a contest related to the D.A.R.E. program.  I don't know where that essay is now, but I do remember all the effort I put into writing it and I remember sitting at the D.A.R.E. graduation banquet with my heart pounding hoping that they'd call my name at least for an honorable mention in the essay contest. 

Honorable mention?  More like I won FIRST PLACE!

YAH! High kick and a fistpump for sure! 

My prize?  Only the raddest D.A.R.E. watch you've ever seen!  It had a black vinyl band and a perfectly round white face with "D.A.R.E." written across it in the standard graffiti style of the D.A.R.E. program circa 1992  (which evidently has not been updated since) and NO NUMBERS.  

At the D.A.R.E ceremony with my rad watch, Officer Cap & my younger brother.
On a somewhat related note, we got my brother a TokyoFlash watch for his birthday a while back... 
...if analog is too simple for you, try figuring out one of those.

That's right, no numbers, no little hash marks, nada.  It was pure 6th grade minimalism.

I wore that watch every day for about 2 years before the battery gave out and I reluctantly retired it to my dresser drawer, scuffed and well worn.  I've not worn a watch with any regularity since.  I mean, how could any normal watch compete?  I could read that watch!  Wanted to know what time it was? Ask me.  I'd glance at my watch - WITH NO NUMBERS - and be able to tell you in seconds what the time was with 100% accuracy.  I remember going to Price Club (that's right... Price Club) with my mom and a random lady asking me what time it was and I TOLD HER!  BOOM! BRILLIANCE!

So what happened?  Here it is.  The only obvious reason that I can no longer read analog clocks:

That watch clearly contained a mystical trinket from a far off world that gave me the ability to tell time on an analog clock at light speed.  When that watch was not on my wrist, I was cursed and became analog-clock-illiterate. Ever since that day I've had to sit here and remind myself how to read an analog clock before I can figure out what time it is... because of the curse of the D.A.R.E watch.  Oh, woe is me. 

Maybe I should make a movie about it.


  1. HAHA, while I was reading this blog I started to think you should make a movie about it and then you said it! btw, are we still continuing to fail at making our ancient rome mythology movie?

  2. Um. I was going to send you an e-mail. I fail again. haha. IT WILL HAPPEN... but I'm tired. And lazy... I need to set a new deadline and put it in my calendar.

  3. I like that your comments are just you guys writing back and forth. :) Dyana, have you tried putting a new battery in the watch? What would compliment your wardrobe better than a 1990s DARE watch? It might be just the thing....
    Also, related to your last post, this is a recipe for lots of fresh vegetables. Maybe for your next basket of goodies??


Your Thoughts?