Why Do Clocks Run Clockwise? is a book for us to ponder a lot. In other words, it is a book of imponderables. In this book, the author, David Feldman, tries to solve mysteries that cannot be solved by numbers or measurements or standard reference books. In fact, he consulted about a thousand people to gather information for this book. So it is a really a mammoth job to get to the bottom of all of the imponderables in the book.
David Feldman sparks our curiosity and entertains us by the 239 imponderables in this book. It is indeed worth reading.
The title of this book is "Why Do Clocks Run Clockwise?". This imponderable reminds me that we often accept things as they are and never question the reason why. We simply ignore the question until we are challenged to think about it.
So why do clocks run clockwise? Henry Fried, a horologist, gives a simple explanation:
Before the advent of clocks, people used sundials. In the
northern hemisphere, the shadows rotated in the direction we
now call "clockwise". The clock hands were built to mimic the
natural movements of the sun.
But what would have happened if clocks had been invented in the southern hemisphere?
It's also a good question.
The book is humorous, witty, and fun. For example, let's read the first paragraph of "Why Can't they Make Newspapers that Don't Smudge?".
Reading a newspaper might be good for the mind, but it ain't
great for the hands. After a bout with the Sunday paper, your
hands are likely to look as if they have been engaged in a
mudwrestling contest rather than an intellectual endeavor.
The following are ten imponderables I am most interested in:
1. What does 0。 in the Fahrenheit scale signify?
2. Why do doughnuts have holes?
3. How did Xmas come to stand for Christmas?
4. Why is one side of Reynolds Wrap aluminum foil shiny and
the other side dull?
5. Why do traffic signs use red, yellow, and green lights? Why
is the red light on top, green light on the bottom, and yellow
light in between?
6. Why do clocks run "clockwise"?
7. Why does Coca-Cola from a small bottle taste better than
Coca-Cola from a large bottle or can?
8. What kind of hen lays extra-large eggs? What determines the
size categories of chicken eggs?
9. Why do trucks now say their contents are "flammable" when
they used to say "inflammable"?
10. Why do hot dogs come ten to a package and hot-dog buns
come eight to a package?
I highly recommend this book to those who enjoy reading and thinking....Continua