A new way for this old guy to tell time

sunrise, Atlantic Ocean

Another day begins.

By Bruce Stambaugh

Years ago, owning a Timex watch was chic. At least it was from my adolescent point of view as influenced by the ubiquitous TV commercials.

The company’s slogan was as simple as their ads. “Timex: The watch that takes a licking and keeps on ticking.” They demonstrated various ways to challenge the integrity of their watches. The timepieces were stepped on, dropped from high places, and crunched by cars.

Those commercials stuck in my impressionable mind. I can’t recall if I ever owned one of their indestructible watches or not. I did wear a watch religiously as a teen.

Doing so was THE way to tell time unless you were in a room with a clock. I wore a watch for most of my adult life. Watches were the standard retirement gift. I got one when I retired as a school principal. I quit wearing it a few years ago for a more accurate way to tell time.

With the advent of cell phones, I stored my wristwatches with my grandfather’s gold pocket watch that my parents gave to me. I ditched the watches for two reasons.

First, wristwatches bothered me when I wore them. In the summer, I sweated with it strapped to my wrist. Other times the expandable metal band pinched my skin. Secondly, I could easily tell time by just looking at my cell phone. The date and time displayed prominently on the phone’s face.

The same was true when I traded in my flip phone for a smartphone. If I want to know the time, I just pull out my phone and glance at the screen. The time is universally accurate.

I realized, though, that time is more than just seconds, minutes, and hours. I also noticed that instead of a wall calendar or the electronic calendars that sync on my phone and laptop computer, I have begun knowing what day of the week it is in a much different fashion.

I use the calendars for the date. I use my weekly pill case for knowing what day it is.

pills, pillbox, medication

My pillbox.

Like many other baby boomers, I’m a walking pharmacy. I’m embarrassed about how many pills I take every day, four times a day, sometimes five depending on my health. I apparently didn’t inherit my parents’ best genes.

It’s sad but true. Every day before breakfast, I religiously bow to my seven-day plastic pill case. It contains four capped compartments for each day of the week. Just so I know where to begin and end, each compartment is labeled for the proper day of the week. And I thought these were just for old people.

I take so many pills that none of the compartments goes empty. I hate taking so much medicine. A lifetime of stuffing my body with gluten, which I unknowingly couldn’t tolerate, drives most of my various medical conditions.

I finally went gluten-free four years ago. But the compounded irritation damage of the gluten still has to be treated and supplemented. Consequently, my pill box is full.

Like it or not, it has come to pass that instead of an indestructible Timex or a handy-dandy smartphone, a utilitarian pill case has become my measure of time. And just like my old watches, don’t look for it on my wrist.

As I empty those pill compartments one by one, I can’t believe how fast the weeks fly by. I lament that it takes a pillbox to remind me of that.

sunset, Amelia Island FL

The sun sets on another day.

© Bruce Stambaugh 2017

9 Comments

Filed under human interest, photography, writing

9 responses to “A new way for this old guy to tell time

  1. greg

    Simple question: An hour after taking your pills, how do you remember what day of the week it is?…just askin’
    I haven’t worn a wrist watch in decades and actually never wore one consistently. I have entertained an idea for a Retirement Wrist Watch (for times when the cell phone is out of reach) the face of the watch would display one thing only in bold lettering, the day of the week! Now if one could just remember to put it on in the morning……

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good to know someone else whose parents didn’t give them their best genes! I’ve gotten used to that pillbox, but don’t like it!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Weekly Blogroll: Mennonite Pecan Bars, Pills – How Many Do You Take?, Apple Fritters, Katie Troyer, and More! | Amish 365: Amish Recipes – Amish Cooking

  4. Carol

    Good post, Bruce! As for meds-you have to do what you have to do, but at the same time be sure your not taking more meds than necessary. As for my husband and I, we feel there is way to much OTC stuff and people can get themselves in trouble pretty easily.
    I find it amazing how easily we seem to get used to some new technology(cellphones+computers for ex). Since 9/11 I haven’t had my cell ph turned off and it is always with me. I was shocked when my husband got rid of the house ph 3yrs ago.
    I enjoy reading your posts. I hope you’ll continue to write for many years to come. Blessings, Carol

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks for sharing, Carol. I always consult with my doctor before adding or subtracting any meds, especially OTC. I hope I can write for years to come, too.
    All the best,
    Bruce

    Like

  6. I can relate to the pill boxes, I do 6 weeks at a time for AM & PM, only 2 scripts, but I take a handful of vitamins and minerals. I attribute this to my excellent health. As always look forward to your articles ! Hope you and Neva are enjoying your well deserved retirement. Please no retiring from writing, still waiting on that book !

    Norma Threet

    Like

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