A Thousand Words

Welcome to A Thousand Words, where I share pictures (and ask my readers to share pictures) of what they'd like to see more of in the world.

This week: town clocks. Or, more generally, large timepieces displayed publicly.

Dubuque_Town_Clock.jpg

clocktown.jpg

I think something was lost when we ceased to glance up at the same clock--or listen to its chimes--to tell the time, essentially communally, instead glancing down at our wristwatch. Not that I hate wristwatches--sometimes one is not within sight of the town clock. As a complementary technology that carries wonderfully personal family associations--one might almost say, family history--watches are excellent. As a replacement for public timepieces, not so much. Of course, now, our super-duper Citizen Tracking Devices tell the time for us, and we don't even need wristwatches.

Town_Clock_1845.jpg

gapclock.jpg

I see the shift away from public clocks (that actually run and are tended to) as similar to the shift away from public phone booths, though arguably more sentimental (I can't get sentimental about any phone booth but this one):

tardis.jpg

Turns out Big Ben has been silent for the past three years. It's undergoing a period of restoration that hopefully will end next year. Here are the final "bongs" before it was shut down:

And here's Big Ben AND the TARDIS, at the same time, in one of my favorite scenes from Dr. Who ever:

Steven Moffat, I love you for writing this scene...if there's anything more romantic than dancing to "Moonlight Serenade" immediately in front of the clock face of Big Ben--despite a German air raid!--I don't know what it is.

And finally, probably the funniest and most absurd use of a town clock ever:

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Famous meeting point in Melbourne, Australia (I've heard the original analog ones have been
replaced w/digital, unfortunately).

A shout out to Victorians - suffering under one of the most draconian and pointless lockdowns on the planet.

Weddings, Parties, Anything
(from freer times)

Sky News Australia - voices of sanity (FWIW their US election coverage is excellent, also)

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@Blue Republic

They have a pretty terrible government, but I'm living in the biggest glass house in the world, as far as that goes. Especially since their terrible government is, at least in part, due to mine.

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"More for Gore or the son of a drug lord--None of the above, fuck it, cut the cord."
--Zack de la Rocha

"I tell you I'll have nothing to do with the place...The roof of that hall is made of bones."
-- Fiver

Lookout's picture

A wet one here as Hurricane Zeta comes in. Supposed to be over us 7 AM tomorrow.

I love old clocks. Speaking of old timey, I carry a pocket watch.

Here's a solar clock in Tirano Italy
120 Tirano train trip (18).jpg

And a couple of one handed clocks in Switzerland
one in St Moritz
150 St. Moritz (56).jpg

and another on the Thurensee
60 Thunersee (13).jpg

Time changes this weekend...most people will "fall back". We just go from AL time (slow time) to GA time (fast time). Living here on the time cusp you have to constantly convert.

All the best!

EDIT to add the clock in Bern that inspired Einstein to think about time travel and the speed of light.

75 bern (5).jpg
(1.5 min)

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@Lookout

I didn't know it was a particular clock that inspired Einstein. One wonders if he would have been similarly inspired by a cell phone. Perhaps, given the nature of his mind, he would have.

Those are some beautiful old clocks. I especially love the solar one.

I wonder if you could think of Stonehenge as, essentially, a clock?

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5 users have voted.

"More for Gore or the son of a drug lord--None of the above, fuck it, cut the cord."
--Zack de la Rocha

"I tell you I'll have nothing to do with the place...The roof of that hall is made of bones."
-- Fiver

I will post a picture of the Astrological Clock in Prague.
Clients are knocking at the door...
Damn work!

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"We'll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false." ---- William Casey, CIA Director, 1981

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

I'm selecting my insurance plan for next year this morning, so I'm guessing y'all are probably having a better time than me. I hope so, anyway.

How are you all doing?

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5 users have voted.

"More for Gore or the son of a drug lord--None of the above, fuck it, cut the cord."
--Zack de la Rocha

"I tell you I'll have nothing to do with the place...The roof of that hall is made of bones."
-- Fiver

enhydra lutris's picture

Doess it matter what "time" it "really is" so long as everybody agrees on what time to pretend it is? Publlic Time is just a convention, witness Dastardly Stupid Time. That said:

Hebraic clock in Prague:
P1060018

Famous Prague town clock(s):
P1060006

detail 1

P1060007

detail 2

P1060004

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@enhydra lutris

and if they're not, people tend to look at them less--at least that's my impression.

But your point stands...