So I’ve been at a conference this weekend and using my cell phone as my alarm, as I have been since I consciously left my alarm clock in Ohio in August. I’ve come to trust my cell phone (even though I switched to a new one recently) for waking me up on time and helping me tell time in a variety of situations. When they warned us at the conference to set our clocks ahead an hour during the evening’s last session, I didn’t really even think or worry about it since I knew my cell phone automatically switches times when I enter a new time zone, and I figured this night would be no different. So last night, like all others, I set my cell phone alarm clock and went to sleep.
I woke up, got ready, and arrived at the dining hall about half way through what I thought was the 8-9 block set aside for breakfast. The room was very empty compared to the other meals, but I just thought everyone must have had a long night and decided to skip breakfast. I saw a clock that was an hour ahead and then remembered there had been a time change, but I must have still been in morning mode because I didn’t realize what exactly that meant. Instead, I thought, “Thank God for my cell phone” and started thinking about the blog entry I would write on the topic (one that would have a much different tone than this one).
As I walked from the dining hall to the room where the workshop I wanted to attend was being held, I saw another clock that showed 10 o’clock instead of 9 as I thought it should be. I must have been waking up because I started to think, “Now if they were going to spring the clock ahead, why would they have moved the clock ahead two hours? That just doesn’t make sense.” It wasn’t until I peered through the door window to see the packed room that I realized that I, in fact, was the one who had screwed up the time change – or at least by putting my trust in my cell phone, I had messed up and would only get to hear the last 30 minutes of the 90 minute workshop. I was disappointed to say the least, but I tried to stay present and take in what the conversation had to offer me.
It’s event like this that challenge my attempts of practicing detachment. It is so easy to cling on to things and let their existence or nonexistence control how you’re feeling about life. This happened later in the day when I was going to security for my flight back to DC and they decided to confiscate my letter opener. They had pulled it out before and asked the supervisor, even on the flight up to Boston, actually, but had always let me keep it (maybe because I’m a white male — though maybe my hair is too long these days); I should have know it was a problem and left it or put it in a checked bag, but I’m forgetful. And though I told the TSA officer, “They’ve let me take it before, but if you’re not going to, I guess there’s nothing I can do,” it was still hard to just let it go. (I wonder what they do with all that stuff they confiscate in that manner?)
In talking to other Verizon customers, their phones did change time, so it might have been a “user error,” but I still blame them. It just is another reason for me to continue to avoid getting too much into the cell phone world.