the end of time

According to today’s Future Tense podcast, reporting on an LA Times article, effective September 2007 AT&T is discontinuing its free time-of-day service in California and Nevada, which, it turns out, are the last two states in which the service still is available. The generation growing up now will never know the soothing voice of Jane Barbe or any of the preceding time ladies reciting the current time and temperature. Californians will no longer be able to dial POP-CORN (actually, POP–767–and any four digits provide the time, but only for one more day) to hear Joanne Daniels recite the current Pacific Daylight Time.

Granted, I can’t recall the last time (until tonight, when we called just for nostalgia’s sake, and before it’s too late) I called such a service, and didn’t even realize it was no longer available back in Virginia or DC. These days, I find out the time by checking my cellphone screen, or on my PC, which synchronizes with a time server. Still, this does feel like the end of an era.

OK, you know I can’t resist:

There’s just no time for such things…
The times they are a changin’…
That’s it, folks, we’re all out of time.