Time used to “march on”, and the pendulum swing was a metaphor which everyone understood. No more. The digital age of technological superiority has made such inane profundities left stacked upon the history of obsolescence. But for cherished grandfather clocks in hallways of mansions forgotten, or in the mysteries of worn novels where the tick-tock represented the anticipation of the sudden death scream; the slow, mechanical device which moves to and fro, left to right, right to left, and into the eternal progression of marked time, is but an irritant for the noise it makes.
Have we outlasted the utility of mechanical complexity? Does the software program in which we see nothing but an algorithm of undecipherable content ever transcend the fascination we glean from springs, weights and mechanisms of human innovation?
The time piece too heavy to carry about, yet never replaced the pocket watch transferred with generational delight, and reflected the craftsman’s care in perfecting the soul of a person’s worth. Somehow, the digital face of a blinking light flashing when the electrical surge fails to protect, is not the same as the quiet peace of an undisturbed house when the pendulum ceases to swing because the owner forgot to adjust the weights. And history now forgets, too, doesn’t it?
Are we at the far side of the extreme, never to swing back, because there is no pendulum to remind us? Can the death of the clockmaker mean the end of reason and compromise, because there is no metaphor to realize, anymore? We tend to believe that such metaphors follow upon a literary device of recognizing something more than the mere fodder of mechanical devices; but what if the opposite were true – that the cadence of history required the invention of the pendulum itself, and the stoppage of such back-and-forth, to-and-fro means that only the extremes of disproportionate swings will remain frozen as the epicenter of man’s egregious faults?
We assume much; and when we presume to follow history’s dialectical progression without considering the actions within our own willpower, Nietzsche’s eternal return to the bosom of our follies will surely unravel and reveal itself in the face of our reflected foolishness. And so, as the proverbial pendulum has stopped, stuck in the timeless middle of muddled quietude, so the failure to make any progress in our own personal lives will be another lost metaphor in the eternal dustbin of forgotten concerns.
For Federal employees and U.S. Postal Workers who want to break the cycle of being stuck perennially in the quicksand of mediocrity, it may be the ripened time to prepare, formulate and file an effective Federal Disability Retirement application, to be filed with the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, whether you are under FERS, CSRS or CSRS Offset. For, as time fails to move without the movement of objects surrounding, so the human frailty of non-movement and inertia is a broken mechanism deep in the recesses of the human heart.
Taking the next step – any step – in filing for Federal Employee Disability Retirement benefits with OPM, is at least a slight movement, a reverberation, of that time harkening for the pendulum to swing back to its proper place of origin.
Robert R. McGill, Esquire