A site of satirical musings, commentary and/or rhetorical criticism of the world at large.

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Location: Southeastern, Pennsylvania, United States

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Forever = ????

Lately I’ve been giving a lot of thought to the concept of forever. I’ve done this due to a few events which seemed to take forever to finally arrive. Of course, we all know that many times forever is denoted by the infinity symbol. It’s a symbol I can’t type because it’s not on my keyboard, but you know the one I’m talking about. It’s that sign that looks like the number 8 has been knocked on its side. This usually happens because the number 7 got shoved while it had another one of its domestic disputes with number 6.

As I stated above, I’ve given this a lot of thought, calculated and crunched sets of numbers until my fingertips grew sore from hitting the keypad of my pocket calculator. At last I can say that I have formulated a precise definition of the concept of forever. I now believe, with 100% certainty, that “forever” is equal to approximately six to eight weeks, give or take infinity.

Pretty good, eh? Not too bad for a history major, if I do say so myself.

The first event that prompted all this brain activity was the Obama inauguration. Is it my imagination, or did the ten weeks between his election and his first day in office seem like forever? I know, many Americans waited whole lifetimes for someone other than a white male to occupy the White House. I’ll concede the point that that time waiting was more than one forever, perhaps even a few hundred forevers.

Or could it be that ten weeks seemed longer because many of us (liberals) couldn’t wait not so much for Obama to take office as wanting to see the Bush administration end? I’ll admit that this is also a likely reason for my impatience for January 20th to arrive.

The other event is the imminent arrival of my Now Playing magazine from Turner Classic Movies. I ordered the subscription on November 30, via Internet, and I was notified that it would take six to eight weeks to fill my order. Okay, fine, today is the end of the eighth week and it definitely seems like it’s been forever. Damn it Turner, I want my magazine!

I’m a big fan of old movies, and silent ones in particular. TCM obliges silent film fans with a showing of a silent movie on Sundays, usually around midnight. My problem is that my local newspaper has not listed this time period in their weekly television grid for the last five years or so. Thus my urgent need for the Now Playing guide.

My newspaper, The Philadelphia Inquirer, must believe that the hours between midnight Sunday and six o’clock Monday morning no longer exist. Obviously they did it as a cost cutting move, but I don’t think the press should be messing with the space/time continuum in this way. According to their schedule, it’s 11:59p one minute and then, boom, it’s instantly 6:01a! Can they do this? Can American journalism just delete these hours from our lives like that?

It’s no wonder I’m so tired when I wake up Monday mornings. I mean, I go to bed at 8:30p and rise at 5:00a, thinking that I have slept over eight hours. However, since they’ve taken away the intervening hours, I end up only getting three and a half hours rest. It’s not fair!

I don’t know if my theory proves the rhetorical question, “If a newspaper doesn’t print a story, does that mean the story doesn’t exist?” An interesting point, but that is something for a future blog. In any event, I still want my full night’s sleep back! And I want my monthly movie guide! As for my mathematical theory about the length of forever, go ahead and test it yourself. I will warn you that this just a theory, and I don’t guarantee that all results will be the same as mine.


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