Well it seems today doesn’t exist. Either that, or I don’t have time to go into my plans for radical calendar reform. I’ll just say this for now: Several readers have pointed out that there are tidier ways to organise a calendar, such as having six five-day weeks to a month, or five 73-day months as the Discordians want, or Azijn’s… interesting two-days-in-one idea. But making the calendar neater was not my objective. Rather, I wanted to make it better.
But more on that anon. Right now, the calendrical reform I most desire is one that would give me fewer hours in the day. I know people are supposed to wish for more, but I figure that’s the last thing I need. My mother is down with a flu so I’m doing all the house stuff, plus keeping two fires on the go so that the place is toasty, plus assembling the media centre PC I bought the parts for this Christmas, plus, you know, my job.
I’m… quite tired. The media centre is coming out good though. That too I’ll have to tell you about some other day. Right now, my sole objective is to stay awake for a few more minutes so I can
More calendar bollocks. I linked to this a couple of days ago but it’s been picked up by Time, so now it’s real.
Some people think we should change the calendar so that each date falls on the same day of the week ever year. It’s one of those ideas that’s so brilliantly simple you wonder why no one’s ever done it. Until you realise the reason why no one’s ever done it is that there’s no bloody point in doing it.
The chief stumbling block to the enterprise is that 365 is not divisible by 7. But while others might give up at that point, these two have a simple solution: Adding a day that has no name. It ain’t a Tuesday or a Sunday or nothin’, it’s just “Worldsday”.
The advantages of this? Well, you wouldn’t need to buy a new calendar every year. If you still buy calendars. And you’ll be able to work out which day of the week every date is, forever. Instead of asking a computer to.
Any disadvantages? Well, we’ll have to memorise a different set of month lengths. Thirty days hath… November? And there’s the little detail that it puts an end to a seven-day cycle that has been unbroken for thousands of years. That… seems a shame.
I believe we have a seven day week simply because it divides evenly into both a 364-day solar year and a 28-day lunar month. Of course we know now that the year and month are both a little longer than that, but when the ancients came up with it I bet they thought it was really cool. It isn’t sacred though. Well, not any more. We don’t have to stick with their mistake. Indeed throughout history, people have tried to clear that mess up. What bugs me most about this attempt though is that it is so much change to achieve so little. The sixteenth of May will be a Thursday, forever. So ****ing what? If we’re going to rip it up and start again, let’s replace it with something that will be worth the trouble, something that will really blow the doors off calendrical conformity.
They tried to decimalise it after the French revolution. Unfortunately, ten divides into 365 even less well than seven does and the system was ridiculed. Merely being revolutionary for its own sake doesn’t cut it. For a new system to catch on, it will need to have real benefits. I’ve had a go at this myself, spending weeks on a radical but no doubt ultimately doomed scheme to harmonise the rhythms of the firmament. I’ll tell you how it works if there’s time – and such a thing as – tomorrow.