Clocks and Chalkboard Erasers

by | Jun 12, 1997 | Priorities, Time

The rules at a particular university were such that if the professor were not present in the classroom by 15 minutes past the hour, the class was considered a “walk” and the students were free to leave — with no penalties for missing a class. The rooms were equipped with the type wall clocks which “jumped” ahead each minute, in a very noticeable fashion. These clocks were also not of the most sophisticated construction. Some enterprising student discovered that if one were to hit the clock with chalkboard erasers, it would cause the clock to “jump” ahead one minute. So, it became almost daily routine for these students to take target practice at the clock (as it would have it, this particular professor was not the most punctual). A few well-aimed erasers, and lo, 15 minutes were passed, and class dismissed itself.

When the day for the next exam rolled around, the professor strolled into the room, passed out the exams, and told them “You have one hour to complete it.”

The professor then proceeded to collect the erasers from around the room and gleefully took aim at the clock. When he had successfully “jumped” the clock forward one hour, he closed the class and collected the exam papers. We’ll all been in situations where we would like for time to jump ahead and move faster than it does. But, as we get older, we become aware than time is moving quite fast enough on its own, without any help!

“My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle…” (Job 2:6)

“Now my days are swifter than a runner; They flee away….They pass by like swift ships, Like an eagle swooping on its prey.” (Job 9:25-26)

“For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.” (James 4:14b)

The Bible speaks often about how quickly life passes, not to depress us, but to bring us to the realization that we had better be preparing now for the eternity that lies beyond this life.

If you find yourself watching the clock at work today, wishing the time would pass faster, be careful! It will be gone before you know it.

Author unknown. If anyone has a proprietary interest in this story please authenticate and I will be happy to credit, or remove, as the circumstances dictate.

Thanks to thought-for-the-day


Clocks and Chalkboard Erasers