As someone whose sense of time synchronizes with no known clock or calendar, I frequently remind associates that, “I can be early, I can be late, but I am almost never on time.” Since my sense of geography is excellent, the only parts of an appointment that I get wrong are the time, the date, or the day of the week, but the “who,” “what” and “where” are no problem. Usually, I will have at least one of the three “whens” of the equation correct.
So it was that I arrived one hour early for my last dentist appointment. I had nothing with me that could help pass an hour, but I was not going to go home, only to come back again. I looked around, but none of the neatly stacked magazines looked appealing; maybe I could find something in my car.
There was nothing in my car, but on my return I noticed a box near the front entrance with a sign, “Library.” Due to the generosity of Dr Gary Revercomb, DDS (retired), there was what looked like a bird feeder on a post, a wooden box containing books and magazines for borrowing. Now, I could kill an hour, no problem.
I happily settled down with a recent copy of The Atlantic Monthly. There were several interesting articles, including the happy fact that in Japan they sell more diapers for adults than for babies. I don’t suppose it matters much for the landfills as to who is disposing the diapers — it’s all the same.
The next article introduces what I would term, “the doomsday app.” The real name of this cheerful little program for your Smartphone is WeCroak. Its function five times a day is to remind you of your mortality, and that time is a wasting: “Don’t forget, you are going to die.” You will hear this friendly message at random times throughout your day.
The author philosophizes at length on whether or not this little app is actually useful. It could be a real downer, but maybe we’d all gripe less, and be more productive with a notification like this.
My hour was halfway gone, and I was going to have to make a choice about what to read next. What would it be?
Oh, darn! Is that my name is being called? As I trudge off to face the drill, I think, “Remember, you are going to die,” but I’m not ready.
Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican and Eagle Bulletin newspapers.
Sep 20, 2018
Sep 19, 2018
Sep 19, 2018