Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Timing is Everything

I like knowing what time it is, but I don't wear a watch. I don't have to, except at church when there is no visible clock, because I have clocks on almost everything in the house. There is one on the computer, one on the stove, one on the microwave, one on the DVD player, one on the cable box, two in the car, one on my nightstand. There are two that my kids made in 7th grade, although the batteries have died. Mainly, I have an internal clock that gets me up early every morning whether I need to or not. I set my alarm every night for 6:15 AM before I go to sleep, but it's only a precaution in case my internal clock is lagging. It hardly ever is. Unfortunately, this internal clock fails as a metronome.

Last night, at 6:30 PM we went to our company's Christmas dinner party. I sat at the table with a man whose sons go to school with my daughter. All three kids go to great lengths to make sure they arrive at school no sooner than they need to. The bell rings at 7:45 AM, and at 7:44 AM, they slink into their seats. The boys have timed their drive from home to school and know they need to leave the house at 7:33 AM, no sooner or later. My daughter has determined that she needs to get up no sooner than 7:15 AM, and we must leave the house sometime around 7:35 AM in order to get her to school on time.

During the short drive, we know we are late or on time judging by the location of the Asian man who walks to work every day. His clock is the most reliable in town, so we know if he has made it to the rail road tracks when we pass him, then we are behind schedule, but if he still up by Broad Street, then we're good.

I don't mind being tied down to clocks. And I don't mind that my internal clock is so powerful. Because I wake up early, I have a quiet house to myself for a while before things really get going for the day, so I can sit with my breakfast from 6:40 until 7:05, and during those 25 minutes I can watch the news, read e-mails, feed the cats, blog a bit. I can sit in the living room with the Christmas tree as its only source for light, and it's all very nice.

I see that it is 8:25 AM, so I really should crank up the big Mac G5 and get some work done. At 10:00 AM, I need to deliver some things I printed to my friend with the yarn shop. Sometime around noon, I will have lunch with my daughter who is home from college, and around 1:30 PM, I intend to play my horn until 2:30 PM when it will be time to drive to the high school to pick up my other daughter. After dinner, which is usually served around 5:30 PM, I'll need to get my horn out again because I have a rehearsal with some brass friends at 6:25 PM, and I need to practice up on the piece we will play at church on Sunday night at 7:00 PM.

This is how I envision my internal clock, the one with her hands on her hips. Get up!


dive said...

I love that clock, Robyn!

My day starts as regimented as yours: alarm goes off at 4:40, out of the house at 5:10 to get a seat on the train …
Then the train company kinda ruin everything.
I keep a record. In the past three years since "Crap Trains" and "Notwork Rail" have been in charge, we have had precisely six trains on time (to the second - not what they call "on time", which is twenty to forty minutes late), and in that same period, three trains have caught fire due to accidents in the buffet car and had to be evacuated.
An impressive statistic, taken together with our average of three breakdowns per week.

Given that Greenwich Mean Time and therefore all our clocks were originally synchronised so that British train stations would all show the same time and allow for accurate timetables, I fell that they have let things slip somewhat …

Sassy Sundry said...

That is the coolest quote.

I'm afraid that I've been wearing a watch since graduate school (I kept showing up absurdly early or horrifyingly late to class). My watch is really cool, though. It has a big flower and a green leather band with flowers on it.

Robyn said...

Dive, I'm shocked. People on this continent think of British trains as extremely punctual. You're known for it. Just another falicity spread around, I guess.

Sassy, I'm pretty sure you have to post a picture of this watch.

Stella said...

Excellent post Robyn! Now you've made me wonder if the reason I take my watch off as soon as I step through my front door after having been outside is because I know subconsciously that I can see clocks all around the house. My Dad never wore a watch but Mr Mac cannot function without his. I can cope outside without a watch but infintely prefer to wear one when not inside my own four walls.

My internal clock doesn't function any more. I suspect the workings have gone rusty from red wine consumption! ;-)

RICH said...

That clock is you!!

If I lived near small town I would go to the small church and listen to your performance.

Robyn said...

Stella, wine can mess with the timing of my clock as well.

Rich, Sunday night is going to be kind of like a Christmas talent show. I'm doing a solo and then a trio with a trombone and trumpet. The trombone and trumpet players are fascinating people who are gracious enough to include me. I love playing with them.