Today’s blog entry is a bit off my typical subjects on this blog. But, as someone who works from home for clients across the US, I often have to figure out what, for example, 9am Eastern Time is in Pacific Time.
As the title suggests, I have a – ahem – handy way to figure this out. What I do is use my knuckles. Specifically, there are four knuckles on each of your hand (excluding your thumb). There are also four time zones in the US. So, if you need to convert from one time zone or another, you simply choose the knuckle corresponding to the time zone and count up to the right and down to the left. Here’s an image that helps demonstrate the concept:
The idea is that if someone asks you to attend a meeting at 3pm Pacific Time and you’re in Central Time, you simply start at the Pacific knuckle and count up to Central. Thus, 3pm Pacific is 5pm Central. And, vice versa. If someone in Eastern Time suggests a 3pm meeting and you’re in Mountain Time, you start with the right-most knuckle and count down to find out that 3pm Eastern is 1pm Mountain.
For those of you who are naturals at figuring out time zone differences this may be a little less than useful. For everyone else, I hope you enjoy!
And, while I’m on it, this idea came to me from a similar trick I use to figure out the number of days in each month.
What you do is start from your left-most knuckle and count months to the right. In this case you count both the knuckles and the space between the knuckles. So the left most knuckle is January, the first space is February, the second knuckle is March, etc. (The last space and knuckle on your right hand isn’t used.) Here’s an illustration:
Any knuckle-month has 31 days and any space-month has 30 days. The only exception is February, which usually has 28 unless you’re in a leap year and it has 29.
What do you think? Do you use any hand-based mnemonics?