Just rambling thoughts about anything that happens to be on my mind and that usually isn't much!
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Sunday, December 25, 2005

Nothing But Time

Well this morning while waiting for people to wake up, I decided to scan the headlines and see what was happening out in the world. There were the normal headlines about bombings, murders, droughts, blizzards, future financial predictions and an occasional human-interest type story. But then a headline caught my eye:

Extra second to get 2006 off to a leap start

I had to go read this! (As you know from a previous blog, I have a vested interest in “Time”)

It started out by saying:
SCIENTISTS are delaying the start of 2006 by the first "leap second" in seven years, a timing tweak meant to make up for changes in the Earth's rotation. A leap second will be added to keep uniform timekeeping within 0.9 seconds of the Earth's rotational time, which can speed up or slow down because of many factors, including ocean tides.

(I knew I had been feeling a little sluggish lately, but I had just thought it was because I had forgotten my Metamucil!) Actually I think these guys have a little TOO MUCH time on their hands if they are setting around studying the earth’s rotation.

This reminded me of a church friend who is always changing his watch so he has the “official time”. He listens to news only to hear the “Ding” on ABC News broadcast that comes at the top of the hour, resets his watch if needed and then waits for some unsuspecting individual to ask him “the time”. I was once that unsuspecting individual!

I walked up to him and a couple others and asked, “what time is it?”

One friend answered, “9:50” another said “10 till 10” but Doyle was almost aghast at their answers! He quickly (and proudly) informed me that it was “9:52”. When I looked at him, he reassured me that it was correct, “I set it by the ABC News ding just this morning!” (The other guys just kind of rolled their eyes.)

He continued, “You didn’t ask ‘ABOUT what time’, you asked ‘what time’ and I wanted you to know.”

I’d really like to send this article from Google News to him, but I am so afraid it would really get him worried about adjusting for that second everyday until the world gets “reset”. (Not to mention that he would be devastated to realize that there is something more reliable to set time than the ABC News ding!)

The article continued:
The adjustment will be carried out by adding an extra second to atomic clocks worldwide at the stroke of midnight Co-ordinated Universal Time, the widely adopted international standard, the US National Institute of Standards and Technology revealed. At midnight (11am Australian Eastern Daylight Time), atomic clocks will read 23:59:60 before rolling over to all zeros.

I really wish these guys could help me rest my wristwatch! It’s still running on military time since I tried to reset it when we switched from Daylight Saving Time!

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