Thursday, April 9, 2009


One fine Sunday morning last month, my wife and I were dawdling around the house enjoying the fresh cool air and warm sunshine that early spring brings to us here in Arizona.

Monica was reading a book as she often does, out on the "deck of iniquity" where all those who smoke cigars and drink the hard stuff are exiled to around here—Not her of course.

I was puttering around the yard making sure our weeds (natural flowers) had enough water for the next few days.

We were just killing some time before heading into town to meet some friends for lunch at noon.

My watch told me that we had better leave soon because it was already 11:30. I let Monica know that we had better get moving—She let me know I was nuts.

Here in Arizona, we don't change time twice a year like most everyone else. That's a good thing. But it just so happens that my watch doesn't know this. That was when I learned that it had a mind of it's own and decided it was going to do me a favor by changing the time for me, springing ahead as it were.

OK not a terrible dilemma just re-set the time right? Sounds good, but after a few minutes of pushing buttons and really #&%@ing things up I was ready to pull my hair out and bash the damn thing with a sledge hammer!

After pushing all the buttons I could find numerous times I found myself on HKG time—presumably Hongkong and was told that I was on my first lap around God knows what.

After much frustration and lots more button pushing, I finally had to settle for living on LAX time (I think that means the airport) which does match Arizona time—at least for now.

So now my watch had the correct time, but the date was missing—@%*&! It had been replaced by the some very tiny letters..."DST" and showed another time of day an hour later than it really was. I figured this must mean daylight savings time but it wasn't saving me ANY time. I can't get it to show the correct time AND the date anymore.

I have no idea what all that other crap on my watch is for and I don't care. I am SO sick of this kind of thing. You can't buy ANYTHING that's simple anymore. Just try buying a watch—You can't. What you can buy is a banded contraption with 642 options—one of which will tell you what time it is—if you can find it. How about a wind up watch? Forget it.

Try buying a simple car. You can't. They too, have all kinds of crap on them you don't need, don't want, and shouldn't have to pay for. I went out a few years ago to buy a car and told myself I would refuse to buy any car that buzzed or beeped at me. I couldn't find one.

And cars no longer have real buttons, levers, or knobs that have linkage to something mechanical so when something breaks you can fix it. Nope. You have to take it in to the dealer and even they can't tell you what's wrong with it. They have to ask a computer.

Why oh why did we sell our Volkswagens?

Everybody seems to think that more is better. Better for WHAT?

Personally, I would pay more for less—less headache.

—Oh, I have to go now. I must be late for something my watch wants me to do...the alarm just went off.

Photos by Monica Van Hall

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