August 17th, 2019

Got the Time?

By G. E. Shuman
I want to tell you about a small thing, a coincidence, if you will. It is something that happened to me, a few weeks ago. I’m not sure if it’s worth telling you about or not, but it looks like I’m going to anyway. Truthfully, in this small coincidence, I think someone was ‘trying to tell me something,’ as they say. That someone must have been God, as the only other one I know who frequently tries to tell me something is my wife, and I don’t think she had anything to do with this.

The thing is, as many of you may know, I am a teacher by profession, and a writer only by hobby. Some others of you may know that I am also a recovering retail manager, and am still often haunted by those long-ago days. (That last point had nothing to do with the subject here, but, like I said, ‘haunted’.)

I mention that I’m a teacher because everyone knows that we educators get the summers off. (Why didn’t I follow this career path many years ago?) And, yes, some people think it’s unfair that we have so much time. I happen to agree with the ‘unfair’ part, so if you would like to start teaching, and join me for summers off, I would encourage you to do so. Just don’t think it’s all about heading home at three o’clock and long Christmas breaksÉit’s not. (Although, those things are pretty cool.) My honest opinion is that, although I love the kids, by the time summer gets here time off from school is necessary so that someone doesn’t get hurt. After all, that someone would probably be me, and I don’t want ‘me’ to get hurt.

The small thing that I began telling you about, I will finish telling you about now. You see, for the past two years, sometime in June, my watch has failed me. (You all know what a watch, or a wrist watch is, right?) People my age know, but young people today just look at their phone to find out the time, as they look at it to find out everything else.Ę

Anyway, yes, for two Junes in a row now, whatever watch I had at the time has no longer been able to put the time on my wrist, and I’m a guy who ALWAYS wears one of those old-fashioned things. Last year the hands on my watch just stopped going around. Replacing the battery didn’t work. Its ticker had simply stopped and just would not restart. That’s not a good thing, if you’re a watch, or a person. Last month my new watch lost one of those little pin things off the strap and the watch literally fell into the trash. I noticed the poor watch lying there in the coffee grounds and vegetable scraps, and rescued it.Ę

I am very aware that for a dollar or so I can get a new pin for my watch. I have almost done that, several times now. For some reason, I have not, yet. It’s a strange feeling to think that someone is trying to tell you something, especially two Junes in a row. If that is what’s happening, I really don’t want to miss the message.

The watch has been off my wrist for about two weeks now, and during some parts of the day I have no idea of the exact time. It’s true that I could pull my phone from my pocket and find the time, but it’s getting easier and easier to not find the time to do that. There is great freedom in not being controlled by what is read on the face of a clock or watch.

So, if you have some free time this summer, for a vacation, a long weekend, or even just a totally unscheduled day, try taking your watch off and leaving it on your dresser. It will take a little weight off your wrist, and a lot off your mind. You may soon feel that someone is trying to tell you something.

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