Calendar Rant

 Posted by on 13 January 2006 at 10:05 pm  Uncategorized
Jan 132006

I’ve always been slightly grateful to have been born on Friday the 13th, since that naturally inoculated me against silly superstitions as a child. After all, how could I regard the day of my birth as a bad omen?!? As our Gregorian calendar turns out, the 13th day of the month is somewhat more likely to be a Friday than any other day.

Despite that bit of good fortune for me, I’m still staunchly in favor of calendar reform. At present, we have a terribly messy system of months with 28 to 31 days, with seven day weeks grafted on arbitrarily. It’s a complete nightmare!

So I propose twelve months of 30 days each, with the extra four to five days added to the end of the year as holidays. Or maybe ten months of 36 days each. Weeks are a bigger problem, in that our present division of the seven day week into five days or work and two days of rest is so very nice. Yet seven is such an inconvenient divisor! So maybe we should just switch to a six day week. Some of us will work a bit harder with five days of work then one day of rest, but we can always negotiate for more vacation. And the lazy people can opt to work four days with two days of rest.

As a general rule, time spans should be easily broken down into integer parts. The 60 minute hour, for example, is ever-so-easily divided by two thirty-minute intervals, three twenty-minute intervals, four fifteen-minute intervals, six ten-minute intervals, and twelve five-minute intervals. That base 60 we inherited from the Babylonians sure is handy! If only our days were so rationally ordered too!

In the meantime, I’d like to put a stop to this silly idea of the week starting on Sunday. It’s bad enough to split up the two days of rest, but to do so while calling them the “weekend” is just inane! The week should begin on Monday, so that the weekend is actually at the end of the week! Also, the New Year must absolutely start on some sensible date, like the winter solstice.

As Paul might say to all that silly wishing: “And I want a pony, and a time machine…”

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