KBGS Old Boys' Forum

A place to discuss Keighley Boys' Grammar School. 

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KBGS Old Boys' Forum
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While sitting in the car idling time and listening to the radio the other day, I found myself getting absorbed in a topic about time and how we perceive it. It's something I had never really considered before, but it might get you KBGS boffins going. Apparently we segment time looking back on our lives according to major milestones and happenings. For instance "before my father died", "after my first child was born", "after my first marriage" (that was a waste of time) and then, as I go back a bit more, "before KBGS", ie. 1958. So as I was listening to the programme, segmenting my life into small pieces, I realised that my KBGS time was in reality only just over five years and yet the experience seemed to be a time segment of huge proportions by comparison. This quite shook me. Since listening to the programme I have been trying to figure out just why it seemed such a long time. I can only conclude it was because it was a life of trying to keep your head down and not get punished. There seemed to be so many parameters set to catch you for some sort of minor misdemeanour, such as getting your corrections wrong too many times for Kenny Prut. I also remember one particular RE master who seemed to set weekly tests just to be able to drag his pump out of his gown sleeve to whack a few unfortunates. It really was hard going having to watch your back all the time. I wasn't one of Gilbert Swift's little heroes or some science boffin, but just part of the student infill who managed to pass the 11 plus. Having said that, I'm glad I had the education, but would be interested to know how other people perceive their time there.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 58-63

Current location (optional) Exeter, Devon

Re: Time

It probably seemed like a lifetime, David, because you were having the time of your life. On reflection - and I have done a lot of that - I enjoyed my time at KBGS - the lads I knew and the friendships, the challenges you faced, the villains you bested, the learning you enjoyed, the sporting opportunities and the competition, house matches and team spirit, taking on the staff and not losing (often): the downside was no-one made it clear to me the wide range of opportunities there were out there that I could access with the grounding I got at KBGS.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 52-60

Current location (optional) Lincoln

Re: Time

Don't forget that your world was a lot smaller in those days and that it was a formative part of your life so you were learning all the time.Up until you left home it was a lifetime-yet for most it was probably 18-20 years and in the span of time it is comparatively short. Cheers

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 47-51

Current location (optional) Auckland,NZ

Re: Time

This has set me thinking as I was at the school probably for less time than anyone else who posts on the site, a mere three years 1943-1946. And yet it had the most profound impression on my young mind and the memory of it has lasted for all these years as a major milestone in my life. I think I was so keen to make the most of what was on offer after the primary school [Highfields] . The masters were a pretty old bunch due to the war having removed all new talent from the scene, but they commanded respect ,and who were we to question there methods at that age . All very well to do so now with the benefit of years of experience but I don't subscribe to a lot of the criticism of the odd bashing from Frizzy and slap on the face as we needed it at the time .The sports were brilliant despite the lack of playing fields . But I can't figure out why the old school has such a hold on me now and guess I never will.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 43-46

Current location (optional) Tasmania

Re: Time

time is relative (to what we want to do with it). As kids, xmas seemed to take forever to come around, there must have been 2 years from 1 to the next, as a parent, it only seems to be 6 months.

I well remember summer Sunday evenings playing in the park and dreading having to go back to primary school on Monday. I recently had a couple of weeks off work to do some building work on the house, the night before I was due to go back to work my wife told me I should put my tools away, without thinking, I said to her, "If I put my toys away now, then my holiday is over."

I found the cure for Mondayitis by spreading my workweek over 4 days. I have Mondays off.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) 58-61

Current location (optional) Haworth now Blue Mountains in Australia

Re: Time

This is an interesting theme. I have said on another thread how much I appreciated my time at KBGS and still value that time and the impact it has had on my life. I was part of that ‘infill’ of pupils and no shining star and yet I can still recall some of the excitement I felt at meeting new ideas. I will not go over that but I will however broach the idea that it seemed a big part of our lives ‘timewise’, to coin an appalling Americanism, because it was, relatively speaking.
We were moving from childhood into puberty with all the confusion and angst that entails. But we were allowed to make that transition in our own time and not rushed into and through it as children are today. Today they do not seem to have a childhood, that time of endless summer days and years when you were ‘just ten’. I seem to recall my childhood as a time without responsibility, a time of no rain, of golden fields or trenches of deep snow, a time of leaves falling in drifts, of hedges bursting with spring, a time when fish leapt and birds sang endlessly. And I was a townie for goodness sake’s. Today they din out any common sense they have with I-pods and MP3’s texting with one hand as they walk past a staring fox ( I’ve seen that happen less than 2 weeks ago.)
That time lasted forever or seemed to because I never really wanted it to end.

Re: Time

Well,philosophical discussions on time could go on forever, Einstein, J.B. Rhine and all that. But we all have an inkling that time isn't a straight continuum. We grow in knowledge and experience but our emotions have been shaped early on in childhood so, to that extent,time stands still.

In a more straightforward note an astonishing thing about this year's reunion was, for me,how easy it was to catch up with people after, in my case, about 5o years. Maybe one reason for that was the fact that we shared the KBGS experience and still remember it - in truth it still shapes us all.

Years at KBGS e.g. 1958-1964 (optional) '40-'48

Current location (optional) Epsom

Re: Time

Hello Tom. Can I agree and yet contest your comment that time is not a straight continuum.
Our universally shared concept of Time is based on motion observed and the one motion that is universally shared is the orbiting of the earth around the sun and the earth’s rotation about its axis. This is measured out at approximately 365 rotations to one orbit. It is however closer to 365 days 5hours and 48mins. approximately and this itself varies depending on what day you measure from but only by seconds and so in the larger scale of things the variation is imperceptible. We accommodate the difference between the 365 and the 365 and ¼ by our Leap Year. We have a division of the year into seasons and a further division of the year into months (or months) and despite the fact that there are thirteen moons in a year we have only the twelve calendar months.
We further split the months into weeks and observe the biblical seven day cycle for a week and have a day’s rest ie Sabbath every seventh day. The day is split into two twelve hour periods and they in turn are further divided into sixty small parts ie minute (mynoot) parts hence the minute (minit), and a second smaller part appropriately called the second. So our universally shared concept of time is dictated by the movement of our planet relative to its neighbours in space. This has the effect of dictating to a great extent our body clock, our sleeping patterns, our meal times etc. We mark this universal and shared concept of measuring time by wearing watches and buying calendars. In this respect universal time is a straight continuum.
However there is also the personal perception of the passage of time. The universal time does not slow while you are sat in the dentist’s waiting room or waiting for a bus in the rain nor does it speed up when you are with your girl friend or at reunion in Keighley Rugby Union Clubhouse. It may nevertheless appear to speed up or slow down. This personal perception of time is not a straight continuum.

Re: Time

Time understood through motion observed.

A car passes down the wet road;
light slides over my curtains.
Shadows fly across my room,
then night resumes. The pulse of numbers
at my side, tells the long dark down to day.

Fitful, I hear the soft insistence of my heart
and tides of breath beat out their span,
per second, per second.
I shake my hand, deadened by my body’s weight
and feel the loosed blood thrill again.

The sundial in my garden has its stone plinth,
fast rooted and aligned to the earth’s tilt,
its bronze dial turned towards the sun
measures and enumerates the unclouded passage
of the hours, the seasons- years.

Flies butt and buzz,
eyes flash, fail and dim,
birds flit, clouds drift, sands shift,
leaves tremble, grasses sway, seas lap
and rivers run under the apparent journeys of the sun.

A sere leaf taps my shoulder,
a bird-abandoned bough quivers,
Leaf- and petal-fall, moon in thrall,
the wind’s melody stroked from swung chimes,
all evaluate the same equations.

When all I am is stilled,
senses nullified, pitched into silence,
I will no longer know these soft tics,
flights of time, nor mind the channerings of decay
that moves me on to other lives.

Re: Time

Surely (?) there is a simple explanation for the perception that years go by increasingly faster:

When you are 5, 1 year is 20% of your life
When you are 10, 1 year is 10% of your life
When you are 50, 1 year is 2% of your life

So the percentage of new information added during a year to your brain gets less and less, and is perceived as a relatively insignificant addition.

One year at KBGS would be equivalent to 10 years once you are over 50