IT'S ABOUT TIME
4 July 2002
When I left the club this morning, I looked at my watch and saw that it read 5 a.m.
Now I know that I've been gung ho with this exercise jazz, but even I knew that I
didn't leave the house at 4 a.m. to go exercise--nor did the rest of the pre-Breakfast Club members. This
could mean only one thing: my watch battery was dead.
Remember the good ol' days when your watch stopped and all you did was wind it back up
again? Ahhh...life was so simple then.
I'm actually surprised that this battery has lasted this long. Batteries seem to last
about a year for me--usually on my birthday, I'm at the jeweler trying to get the battery
changed and he convinces me that it's too difficult to get the back of the watch off and
he has this wonderful deal on a new watch--which, of course, I always buy.
Then we have to find "extra links," in order to get the expansion band to go
around my fat wrist. I've gotten really good about knowing how to ask for things like
extra links and seat belt extenders and all that sort of thing.
But in the last month or so my watch has been too loose on my wrist! Woo hoo!!!
I can finally buy "off the rack" again. Also, the watch has really gone through
a lot of hard knocks, apparently. The back and sides of the watch are so pitted that even I
can see that it would be impossible to remove--and replace--the back on this watch.
So after work today, I set off in search of a New Watch. Now that I don't have to worry
about finding a place that can put in extra links for me, the world opens. I can go
expensive. I can go cheap. I can go funky. No problem at all.
I popped into Longs, which is near the office (I rode my bike from the office to
Longs--Walt has the car in San Francisco tonight, and I rode my bike to work. I'm
getting rather blasé about that sort of thing.).
I was greeted with an array of watches in all styles, all colors, all types. Did I want
digital or analog? I decided that for a change I'd go digital, which narrowed the choices
significantly. Then the salesperson told me that a large number of the watches were on
sale, 50% off. Well, that narrowed my choices much further.
Finally I settled on a Timex digital (I'm hoping it will take a licking and keep on
ticking--where is John Cameron Swayze? Dead, probably). This thing does everything but
windows (or any other operating system). Now that I've spent so much time mastering the
functions of my new cell phone, I was ready for a new toy. This has buttons and bars and
bells and whistles and I don't know what all.
Best of all, its normal size band fits my now-normal size wrist. Another milestone.
Happily I paid my money and came home with my new toy.
First thing is to reset the time. I took the instructions out--the thin piece of paper
is the size of a poster folded up into the size of a matchbook and shoved into the plastic
stand on which the watch was displayed.
I carefully unfolded and tried to decipher the directions. Theoretically anybody
on the face of the globe should be able to work this watch. All of the directions are one
or two words, in just about every language in the world.
The box with the first step, for example, reads: Change mode/Chang. mode/ Cambiar
modialidad/ Alterar o modo/ Cambia mod. /Umstellfunktion/ [and some Japanese]. Back/
Retour/ Retroceder/ Recuo/ Prec./ Zuruck/ [Japanese]/ INDIGLO/ Select/ Sélect/
Seleccionar/ Seleccionar/ Selez./ Auswählen/ [Japanese]/ [Chinese].
Somehow, by guess and by golly and by pushing likely looking buttons, I got the time
set. I despair of ever figuring out how to use the stopwatch or countdown features (Heck,
I can barely find the label that says what functions the watch performs). I did, however,
manage to find the "backlight" button, so at least I can find out what time it
is in the dark.
I don't think it sends or receives e-mail, though.