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ZetaTalk: Calendars and Clocks
Note: written on Jul 15, 2001 during the sci.astro debates.

After a pole shift, several things change, making the past time pieces and calendars virtually worthless. The geographic poles change, the rate of rotation may change, and the magnetic poles change. It has occurred, as Plato recorded, that the rotation of the Earth reverses and goes West to East, between pole shifts. All the old counters stopped, of course, when the rotation of the earth froze prior to the shift. When rotation restarts after the passage of Planet X, several new variables are in place. Survivors find themselves in a new climate, warmer or colder, more humid or dry, with the vegetation in place struggling and wildlife on the move. The Sun rises and sets in a strange place. The clouds are closer to the ground, drizzle often seeming to be incessant, so peering at the stars is difficult and most certainly not the preeminent concern of starving survivors.

By the time, several decades later, that the skies clear and sunshine returns edible vegetation and meat on the hoof to be killed for dinner, the old means of time-keeping by the stars has often been lost. Pole shifts cause injuries, and lack of nutrition is hard on the elderly. The young and hungry, especially those born after a shift who have little regard for the knowledge carried by those from an earlier time, refuse food to seemingly befuddled old men who talk of times long past. Knowledge is lost, civilizations abandoned for more immediate needs, and even the need for time pieces and calendars the last of anyone's concerns. If planting is not being done, or appointments are not being made, and the only thought the direction of one's wanderings toward a better source of food - then why are time pieces and calendars important?

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