6 November 2011

Good morning to you all.

Some/many of you will remember that one of my “pet peeves” is the lunacy which we insist on going through twice a year when we change our clocks in the interest of saving daylight. The whole concept is absurd, of course, based on the premise that changing the hands on the face of the clock somehow affects the hours of daylight which we have available to us.

Clock FaceThe illusion that this actually achieves something is prompting some in the “establishment” (whoever they are) to suggest that we should adopt double-daylight savings time in the summer and “revert” to “ordinary” daylight savings time the rest of the year. Twice as much daylight as ever before!

I do have to confess that I do enjoy the late, light evenings when we can sit on the patio during the summer but then again, there’s nothing wrong with sitting out on the patio when the clock says 9.00 rather than 10.00. Indeed, what does the time on the clock face have to do with the amount of daylight the sun is providing? The biggest factor determining whether or not we can sit outdoors on a summer’s evening in this country is whether it’s raining or snowing!

Still, it is what it is and last weekend our clocks turned back to Greenwich Mean Time once again. Ordinarily, this is one of my favourite days of the year – that extra hour in bed is heaven itself. This past Sunday, however, I woke up at 7.00, made the coffee and came back to bed to read the morning’s newspapers on the iPad. Only then did I realise that it was only 6.00 am! It’s bad enough when they steal this hour off you every year; to not realise that they’ve finally returned it is extraordinarily frustrating!

Even so, I wasn’t as frustrated as Molly was. When it came to dinner time I had enormous difficulty persuading her that it wasn’t “time” for her dinner yet; the clock only said 4.00 pm and, as we all know, dinner time for Molly is 5.00 pm. Certainly, she knows it. Every day beginning at about ten minutes to five she arrives at your side and looks longingly into your eyes. It’s clear there is a degree of telepathy going on here as she wills you to stop whatever it is you’re doing, make your way to the kitchen and put together a delicious meal to be deposited on the floor in her favourite corner.

So, at about 3.55 she began to initiate her pleadings. Every couple of minutes afterwards she would appear at my side looking at me longingly and then, eventually, accusatorily – have you forgotten my dinner you b*****d? Am I not being fed tonight for some reason utterly unknown to me? Why or why do I live with such mean-spirited owners?

I suppose I could be persuaded to embrace the whole ridiculous concept of altering the clocks for an utterly artificial purpose if we were to adopt the strategy I recently heard on one of the recent Car Talk podcasts courtesy of Click & Clack. They recently read a letter on the show which proposed a modest change in the way in which we introduce Day Light Savings Time which is, simply, ingenious and, if adopted, would certainly silence the ranting criticisms of me and everyone else who opposes the concept.


And speaking of radio interviews, some of you will know that our friend, neighbour and published author Peter Taylor was recently interviewed on a programme called “The Sports Rabbi” from Jerusalem. As Pete himself said on his Facebook page, it’s one of his best interviews ever and you can listen to it here.

As if delivering the most beautiful granddaughter in the world wasn’t sufficient excitement, Nick and Lucy have been busy cleaning and decorating their new house which they will be moving into in the next few days. They picked up the keys on Thursday and have been scrubbing and painting for the past couple of days. Naturally, Penelope has been giving them an extended hand painting and stealing cuddles with Annabelle whenever possible. Me, I’ve been singularly unhelpful, as usual. No doubt you will all receive a change of address notice in due course.

I ran across an article in the Guardian one day this week. Apparently, an “overzealous” cleaner has ruined a piece of art worth in the region of £690,000 because she thought it was dirty. She diligently scoured off a layer of paint in a sculpture by a German artist which was on loan to a museum in Dortmond. In spite of how clean it is now looking, I am guessing the owner is not well pleased? You can read the details here.

And finally, thank you to everyone who has contributed to my Movember challenge in aid of prostate cancer research. I am stunned and indeed humbled by all the kind words and contributions we have received. If you haven’t had a chance to donate you can still do so at my personal “Mo Bro” page. The “goat” had its first outing on Friday when I visited a school and pretended to do a bit of work. Although it is in its infancy, it is making good progress. I’ve posted a photo on my “Mo Bro” page which you can see here.

Much love to you all,



5 thoughts on “6 November 2011”

  1. I also think daylight savings time is ridiculous but imagine my surprise and joy this morning when my computer told me I really didn’t sleep in until 7:00 but that I actually did get up at 6:00 as originally planned.
    I know I tell you this every year but not sure I’ve ever had the chance to tell your wider audience – when David was little and was trying to figure out daylight savings – he asked day after day, “is it daylight savings today” to which I patiently replied that it was. Finally after a week or two when hearing the same reply he asked, “when is nighttime savings?” I noticed in 2012 “nighttime” savings starts on his birthday!
    Lots of love to all.

  2. Be thankful you don’t live in Kashi (Kashgar – NW China). Due to the central government’s insistence that the whole of China should run on Beijing time, the latest sunrise of every year happens at 10:17 and the sun doesn’t come up before 10:00 during the whole of January.
    Being someone who hates getting up in the dark I’m staying in the SW.

  3. Seems a bit harsh to insist you vacate the marital premises simply for persisting in the unhelpfulness, to which you freely admit, and to which Miss P must be quite accustomed at this point. Still, hope you manage to find a domicile as pleasant as the one to which you have become accustomed. Shall look forward to receiving change-of-address notice.

  4. Good one J! – have only just seen it. Am giving him one last chance – shape up or ship out, and take that darn goat with ya…

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