What’s Happened To Clocks?

As most of you know by now, I’ve been spending a lot of time in airports lately. I’ve noticed a bunch of things, which I mentioned in that last post, but one thing in particular brought something home to me.


What’s happened to all the clocks? There isn’t a single airport I’ve been to over the last 3 years where there’s been a clock anywhere. The funny thing is that airports are big on time. They put up these boards that tell you whether your plane is on time or not. They expect you to start boarding the plane at least 25 minutes before they’re ready to take off, and they’re sticklers with time; you miss getting on before they close that door and you’re stuck.

And it’s not just airports. I’m working these days in an office park for my consulting assignment, and I’ve noticed that there’s not a single clock on any floor. Almost no one has a clock on their desk either. There’s a break room on every floor, and on the first floor there’s a cafeteria where people can get food and drink… and no clock.

When I decided to stop wearing a watch some years ago, I figured that I’d have it easy because I have my smartphone with me most of the time, and there were always clocks around. But I was mistaken on that second part. Above you see a clock on the outside of my favorite grocery store; there are no clocks inside however. I like to go to the casino; there’s certainly no clocks in there because darkness never comes in a casino. There’s no clocks in the library I go to, even though they have a specific closing time.

What the hey? We live in a fast paced life, and it’s true that most of the time we have other alternatives for finding out what time it is. But it’s not always convenience to try to grab at my smartphone, and thus I might be sitting in a restaurant eating my meal and, because there are no clocks, I have no idea if I’m missing out on something.

I was visiting a friend of mine this weekend and he had an old time grandfather clock in the living room along with a baby grand. And it not only couldn’t keep the right time anymore, but it rang on the half hour rather than the hour, which didn’t matter since the time wasn’t close to correct.

Where am I going with all of this? We’re expected to be on time for many things. We have appointments of all types; meetings, doctor, kids, on and on. Many people say that they don’t have enough time to keep up with blogging; how do they know if they can’t chart time? Sure, they might have watches, but in my opinion even a watch isn’t enough to help you keep control of time.

What about me? Sure, I don’t wear a watch. But I have a clock in my home office that I can see above my monitor. I have two clocks in the master bedroom. There’s a large clock in the living room, a clock in 2 of my 3 bathrooms, a clock in the dining room, a clock in the kitchen, three clocks in the guest bedroom, 2 clocks in my wife’s sewing room, and two clocks in her office and in her bathroom.

Not only that but everything else in my house that can keep time is set, although the time is different if I set it than if my wife sets it, as she has this thing about setting clocks at least 4 minutes ahead of the actual time; what is it with wives? lol

Still, we have a handle on time at home, whether we schedule anything or not. When I write my articles for the Hot Blog Tips Newsletter that goes out once a week, put out by Brian Hawkins, I’m looking at the clock before and after I write each article, as I write 4 or 5 of them at a time to take care of the entire month up front; I’m not quite sure what he thinks about that or even if he believes I’ve written something that fast.

If you say you don’t have time to blog, or that it takes a lot of time, are you looking at a clock, or a watch, or even the lower right side of your computer to see if that’s true? Are you off watching TV or playing pool or reading magazines or eating popcorn (okay, I’m with you on the popcorn) instead of putting a blog post together?

How are you controlling your time? Where have you noticed that there are no clocks around that shocks you? My belief is that you haven’t even thought about it until reading this; now that you’re aware, take a look and let me know what you see.

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22 thoughts on “What’s Happened To Clocks?”

  1. Life moves fast, and as smartphones became popular, clocks became less popular. I never thought about it, but you are right, Mitch. Not a lot of stores/offices have their own clocks. People tend to rely too much on their phones.

    As for me, I am a wrist watch guy. Always have been. I used to get a wrist watch for each birthday (As a kid, I was good at breaking things :D).

    Right now, I have a collection – 3 watches (Over 5 years). 2 Analogs and 1 hybrid. I used to be a fan of digital watches, but I changed my position once I got used to analog watches. Now, I am a fan of analog watches 😀

    All that personal stuff aside, yes it is important to know time management. As for me, I tend to experiment with it (Right now, I am following a “block” schedule – time blocks for each activity – from learning new things to blogging). It works really well, at least for me.

    I personally think we should experiment with our schedules – learn what works best for us, and learn to stick with that schedule 😀

    1. Great stuff you’ve shared Jeevan. I’ve decided that if I start wearing a watch again, it’s going to be gold with a black face and cost… well, it’ll cost enough. lol I want it to feel like more than a timepiece. My old watch was more for scheduling things and that alarm was always going off. I didn’t necessarily hate it, as I’d bought that brand multiple times, but in a weird way it feels so much freer without the watch. Still, isn’t it shocking to see how many places don’t have clocks anymore?

  2. Come on Mitch, you just made me forget what I wanted to say; all I can think about is popcorn now. We just got special popcorn salt and I’m addicted to the stuff.

    Oh, clocks… I have one in my living room that no longer works but it’s so cool looking I leave it up there anyway. It just stays 2:24 here all day long. I know that wasn’t the point of the post but I’m sure you wanted to know that.

    I will back you up on timing your article writing. For anyone else reading this, Mitch always follows each article/tip with something like, “Alright, that took eight minutes, let’s see if I can get the next two done in less than ten”. lol

    Personally, I like it because it’s closer to a conversation than a submission form. I’ll take that any day. 🙂
    Brian Hawkins recently posted..15 Potential Income Streams For BloggersMy Profile

    1. LOL! Thanks for confirming that Brian; you might have to go to my latest video & confirm it again for me. I saw the picture of your clock on Instagram; wow! 😉

  3. Mitch, I stopped wearing a watch at least twenty years ago. I could never stand the feeling of that thing sliding around on my wrist. Our supermarkets no longer have clocks, and neither does the library. The bank has one, though, so I can tell how much time I’m wasting while I’m standing in line.
    Charles Gulotta recently posted..Post-Scholastic Stress DisorderMy Profile

    1. LOL! That’s funny Charles. My bank doesn’t have a clock so they don’t want me to know how much time I’m wasting but I do anyway because I just get on the phone & start doing other stuff.

  4. I have clocks in every room except the bathrooms in my home. I wear a wrist watch too. I am a stickler for punctuality and without the clocks and the wrist watch, I will be lost. I have not particularly notices the absence of clocks in airports, but on my next trip out on Saturday, I will keep a look out.
    Rummuser recently posted..The Rat Race.My Profile

    1. Rummuser, I’m a stickler for time as well, but only when I need to be. Most of the time I don’t need to be these days, thus I haven’t needed the watch. But there are times when I’ve wished for a clock if only for my peace of mind.

  5. Mitch,

    Check this out! About two weeks ago I actually put my only TV into the back seat of my car and took it to the town dump and got rid of it! That’s how I’m regaining control of my time! The set-top box on top of the TV from the cable company Comcast used to have the time there. Since, i threw out the tv and the returned the cable box, there’s no clock in the middle of my room any more!

    One last little thing about clocks and time. I used to teach web design to high school students. They were NOT allowed to have cellphones or to use them. Whenever I would catch them, they would often say, “I was just checking the time.” I would counter with “There’s a clock on the wall at the front of the room right behind me.” They never seemed phased by factual evidence and logic in my reply as if that clock on the wall was totally irrelevant. I loved the students but am so glad that I’m teaching adults online now and teaching them something I love — WordPress and Blogging!

    Thanks for your great blog and your Google hangouts, my friend!

    ~ Jupiter Jim
    Jupiter Jim recently posted..WordPress 3.6 is Here — Features and Installation Video.My Profile

    1. Thanks for sharing your story Jim. It’s amazing how generations change the way things are used, viewed or ignored. These days it sometimes seems like logic and ease doesn’t register with a lot of folks; I don’t get it but maybe I’m not supposed to try. 🙂 And thanks for the kudos about the Hangouts; we’ll keep doing them until we get it right!

      1. First, your comment didn’t go to spam! lol Second, you’ve got it right Lee; in NY it’s a law that if you sell it, you have to take it back, which is a good thing.

      2. There is a section in the town dump of Jupiter specifically designed for electronics and computer where they recycle the lead, mercury and what have you, of course. It’s got a cement floor and a roof over it. They don’t let you just throw the TV’s in with the garbage from your trash can. And I lived in The San Francisco Bay Area for over 10 years. There are many things I miss about CA! And many things I love about Florida. For instance, I could NOT afford to live 5 miles from the beach in California, but can and do here and will be going to the beach in a little while today, something I almost never did in the many years I lived in California. Have a great day guys!
        Jupiter Jim recently posted..How to Install TubePress Video Gallery Plugin in WordPressMy Profile

  6. I’m always disconcerted if I’m in a place without a clock as my time-keeping ability is so abysmal. Here in the UK, I think we’ve a lot more clocks than you have there, but even here I’ve noticed them dwindling.

    Hospitals are the places that I’ve always thought there were too many clocks. I suppose they’re more for the benefit of staff than the patients.

  7. It is interesting that there seems to be a generational thing with wearing watches too. I’ve notices that most people under 25 don’t wear watches for the same reason you stopped wearing yours – because they all have smartphones.

  8. Intriguing post, I must say.
    I always use a wrist watch and I keep on looking at it all the time because I am wearing it, obviously. It makes me conscious about the time, but I know that there is a negative impression to me if people are looking at me always checking my watch. ‘Is this girl in a hurry?’ is what I am thinking that they are thinking. LOL!
    Clocks are often times stressing, right? 🙂 You are always running out of time, you are in a hurry, you are wasting time and a lot more.
    One thing I can suggest, live your life to the fullest and make your of the time. I must say, the end is near.

    1. Well, I certainly hope the end isn’t near too soon for me, that’s for sure. lol As to looking at your watch all the time, I never had to do that with my watch because it had a timer on it. Same with the smartphone, although in some places you just lose track of time here and there. Freaky stuff.

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