Sept. 13, 2019, was a day to remember.
On a check that day, I wrote in the area where you are supposed to pen the date: September 13, 2019. This was significant because it was the first time in 2019 I had actually written the correct year when prompted to write a date on a check, or a formal document, or a criminal complaint, or a NASA astronaut application form.
Prior to that watershed moment, I had written 2018 as the current year, or sometimes even 2015, or, once, and I wasn't even drunk, 1979.
My celebration of reaching this milestone so early in the year was short-lived. At church on Sunday, someone informed me (I think it was that guy behind the podium, ole Captain What's-His-Name) that the date was Sept. 15, 2009. Then, I was stunned even more when he added: "I can't believe we're only three-and-a-half months away from a new year."
What? The year is almost over? I just started writing down the right year this week! This can't be happening! (Italics + bold = Panic!)
The problem is the year is just too short, with 365 days simply not enough time to memorize all the things you must commit to memory in a year — things like what year it is, and what numbers, combined, constitute a year, and your phone number. How are we supposed to cram all that into our heads in a mere 12-month period? And also remember what month it is? And that there are 10 of them?
What also concerns me is that — according to my 17-year-old son — the next year will be 2020. That's two new numbers I'll have to learn. See, previously, for the last 10 years or so, I've only had to change one number. For instance, when switching from 2018 to 2019 (last week), I only had to change one numeral. The year prior, I changed just one number as well: from 2017 to 2018. I don't remember what the year before that was, but I'm pretty sure I only had to change one number.
The point is: If it takes me 200-plus days to learn the new year with just one number to change, how long will it take me to memorize twice as many new numbers? Probably twice as long — something like 400 days. Just a wild guess.
What I propose is this: We make the year longer.
Who came up with this 365-days-in-a-year business anyway? Probably the same dummy who came up with the 40-hour work week. It's just not reasonable to expect us to work 40 hours a week, or be able to fit 365 days in a year, or to sleep just 10 hours a day. There's too much to do and learn and watch on TV, and Christmas is just too darn close to the next Christmas. It's getting rather expensive to have to buy presents for everyone every 365 days.
I bet I can get an amen from Mr. Claus on that.
Len Robbins is the editor of the Clinch County News.