Social science

PPFF #117

Hello All,

It was a Thursday morning. I can’t recall the exact hour, never mind the minute.

My mind was in full focus, working/clicking away being surrounded by heaps of paperwork; functional systems, sub-system codes, bolts, drawings and sketches of questionable quality.

Then quite abruptly, I was interrupted by repeated flashes in the bottom right hand corner of my left computer screen. It was a Skype message from Don (not his real name), beckoning me making it look very tempting to click. I thought to myself ‘if the message had a human face, it would probably have been wearing a ‘come hither’ look. I hastily clicked, looking over my shoulder to see if anyone was looking at the screen.

Beginning with lots of exclamation marks, obviously it was excellent news. He typed fast; I could almost see his fingertips blazing at a lightning speed over his keyboard, to tell me a cool fact he’d learnt.

“International Fixed Calendar” were the delightful first three words he typed.

I was elated and he continued “It’s a 13-month calendar which has exactly 28 days in each month, first presented in 1902. It’s quite amazing really. Every date falls on the same weekday. Most famously it was the official calendar of the Kodak Company from 1928 to 1989 and it’s incredibly logical.”

It basically looks like this.

January                1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

February              1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

March                   1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

April                       1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

May                       1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

June                      1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

Sol (new)             1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

July                        1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

August                  1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

September         1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

October               1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

November          1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

December           1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

Arbitrary day      1 (a day not assigned to any month)

January                1 (Sunday) – 28 (Saturday)

Two things put me off.

Firstly, the guarantee of Friday the 13th EVERY MONTH. If you were as superstitious as I am, this would probably be the deal breaker.

Secondly, what really turned me against it was its exact and logical nature; it feels like something out of a test tube rather than organically grown and natural. Actually I think it’s the irregularities and differences that let us distinguish one from another in an array of numbers, names and information in general, and this system allows none of that with every month and year being exactly the same.

Also I was born on a Sunday in Gregorian calendar, which is arguably the most boring day of the week but throughout my life time, thanks to inherent irregularities of Gregorian calendar, I’ve had my birthday on every day of the week. In the International Fixed Calendar, my birthday would always be on a Monday. Imagine a Monday birthday party!

Have a good (Gregorian-calendar) Friday.

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