Photo by Duncan McNeil (dmcneil) on flickr.com, under a Creative Commons license.
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So am I nuts, or what?
This morning I had coffee with some very good friends in a local cafe. It's brand new, with minimal decorating. Other than furniture and a small fireplace, the most prominent piece in the room is an enormous clock, probably 2 1/2 feet across, visible from every seat and table (not the clock above -- that one is in Scotland).
I've been there four times. Every time, the clock has shown the wrong time. It's not just a little off -- it's way off, not even close to the hour or minute.
The first time, I figured the place was new, with many details not yet worked out (want cream or milk in your self-serve coffee? You have to ask for it. The cashier hands you a gallon jug.).
By the fourth time, I was amused and a little irritated. I'm enjoying a coffee, staring at an enormous clock face which tells me it is 4:24 in the afternoon. Huh. I thought it was more like 9 in the morning. Silly me.
It's not important, just disconcerting. So today I timidly asked the cashier if she could maybe set the clock to the proper time.
She looked at me like I was nuts. "It's decorative," she said. "It doesn't need to be set."
I hemmed a bit and commented that it was running, so would it be too difficult to just set it to the right time? "I don't have the authority to do that," she replied.
Um, perhaps the manager could set it? "He doesn't have that authority. Only Corporate does."
I must have looked astonished, because she got defensive. "Look," she said, "we figure everyone has a watch or a cell phone. No one needs to look at the clock for the time."
I was speechless.
But am I nuts?
(p.s. You still have to ask for the gallon jug to put white in your coffee.)