Last night the International Date Line, the boundary line between 'today' and 'tomorrow' was stolen by a group of metaphysical criminals calling themselves the 'Time Lords'. Since it's inception in 1884 at the International Meridian Conference, the Date Line has been tucked safely away in the middle of the Pacific ocean at 180 degrees Longitude. This morning the Date Line finds itself slap bang in the middle of Asia dissecting numerous countries including Russia, India and Kazakhstan and causing Time Zone chaos for almost 2 billion people.
This is not the first occasion the Time Lords have attempted to cause global metaphysical chaos. They have previously attempted to hijack leap years and turn them into leap decades or even Quantum leap centuries under the slogan "Let's Live the future - Now!" They almost succeeded in their bid to re-tune the global satellite positioning system to their local radio station and reset the world's atomic clocks so they run backwards.
For well over a century the International Date Line, who is still single and available, dissected the world's days all alone in the middle of the Pacific confusing only a handful of remote Islanders who probably did not care what time of day it was since they were living in paradise. As of today Billions of people are being directly affected by it's new location. India, now a booming world economy but once the fountainhead of spirituality, has been particularly hurt by this sudden change.
"Everything has gone haywire" says Anil Roshan a businessman in New Delhi who travels westward across the city to work but now finds himself crossing over to another day as well. " I leave home Monday morning 7 am sharp, travel 25 kilometers through Delhi and arrive on Tuesday morning 8.30 am. The rush hour used to be one or two hours of driving, now it takes over a day! This is ridiculous! I lose a day of business and now I've got to work two Sundays a week!"
New Delhi is now a city divided into two days. Those who travel eastwards always find themselves a day behind or repeating yesterday, those who travel westwards find themselves a day ahead, like they've jumped ahead in time.
"It is total chaos here in Delhi and Bangalore as the Date line dissects both cities down the middle" says assistant Police commissioner Arun Singh. "Every flight into our airport arrives a day early or late depending on which direction they're flying from. Taxi's now charge double for crossing time zones. Students who travel across the city go to school or college on Monday, arrive only to find it is still Sunday."
People living near the Date Line or in the case of Government Bureaucrat and father of five Suresh Shah actually ON the Date Line have found it joyfully problematic and a new craze 'Time zone jumping' has emerged as a favorite pastime of the area's youth.
"The Date line now cuts right down the centre of my house and garden." says Suresh. He takes a short run up and jumps from one side of his garden (10 am Monday) and lands a few feet away on the other side at 10 am on Sunday. "This is great" beams Suresh as he bounces back and forth shouting "Sunday Monday Sunday" like a kid, as his own kids watch on gleefully." I get an extra day off work every week just by jumping. My wife is also happy as she can cook in the kitchen on Monday and serve in the dinning room on Sunday and she is actually a day younger." Suresh then winks " Off the record I can get twice as much in baksheesh (cash used for bribery) depending on which side I am standing so I'm truly joyful"
Enterprising Businesses such as holiday companies are already offering 'Jump'in Time' and 'Double Romantic Time' vacations at resorts along the Date line and the demand for dual time zone watches has shot through the roof. Others such as DHL are relocating their offices onto the Date line to give themselves that extra edge. General manager Kishant Patel says "If we straddle the line we can maximize profit opportunity. If you're sending a package from Mumbai to Kolkata we can guarantee that it will reach your chosen destination before you have sent it."
The shift in the Date Line is causing similar chaos In Russia and Kazakhstan with the Russians in particular seeking ways to exploit this new 'natural resource'. Billionaire Oligarch Mikhail Brezhnvesky whose territory the Date line now straddles says " I control oil, gas, minerals and steel why not time time as well, we can make money from this I'm sure".
Politicians reacted angrily yesterday or today depending where you are reading this. Indian Prime-minister Manmohan Singh ehoed the sentiments of Vladimir Putin " These metaphysical criminals are irresponsible fools playing havoc with a well worked system of time zones. I hope when they're caught they are put away for an eternity." Cecil D'Sousa of Border Watch, a humanitarian group who monitor the rights of Imaginary Borders around the world said "These metaphysical activists are just trying to make the point that the Date line has rights and it wants to be seen and heard. They're also trying to make some point about the nature of time but I haven't worked that out yet."
Experts also fear that a radical splinter group of Metaphysical subversives calling themselves "pay back time" with strong links to the Time Lords could also responsible for the theft of the Date Line. In the last decade they have been behind numerous attempts to shift political boundaries around the world. They failed to make China part of Tibet and North Korea part of Mongolia but succeeded in making Liechtenstein a visible part of Europe by stealing bits of Switzerland and Austria. They were also responsible for last years ill fated attempt to shift the Axis of Evil southward and drown it in the Indian Ocean.
This is not the first time the Date Line has been shifted. For over a century the tiny Islands of Kiribati were split into two different days as the Date line passed right through them. In 1995 the Islanders decided they had enough with the chaos and stress of living under the shadow of the Date line. They used all their might (and a few hardy livestock) and slowly nudged the line off course. Today as a result of that monumental effort Kiribati and Hawaii lie on the same line of longitude but are now a whole day apart. The Date line was not happy with the move and protested but then decided it didn't like the Kiribati's anyway claiming that " they use the extra time afforded to them by my gracious presence by moaning every day and night whether it be today, yesterday or tomorrow."
The International Date Line has never been straight and claims to be Bi, sexual or polar we're not sure, but it's probably to double it's chances of getting some romantic action on a Saturday night. The Line that did zig zag through the Icy waters of the Bering Straight now does so over the fertile plains and mountains of southern Russia and Kazakhstan. Certain places in these areas, tens of miles apart now exist in three different time zones or to put it another way there can be three different days happening at once. The result is chaos for the locals.
Brijal Hussan, a Property Developer in Almaty, Kazakhstan says " Yesterday I leave home at 10 am and travelled for 50 kilometres and arrived at my first job at 23.15 pm the next night! Then I leave and travel 70 Km and arrive at my next job at 12.15 the next day. This is crazy! By the time I get back home yesterday at 10 PM I feel I have jet lag." For Brijal, who downs another Vodka like water and lights another cigar, it's been a long three days in the last 12 hours "the worst thing is that my workers, lazy sons of *%!*@!.. now have the excuse of not turning up by saying they don't know what time of day it is!"
The World Security Council has called an emergency meeting but so far not everyone has made it because of the confusion over the exact time. The UN President Khofi Anand said "Once we all actually manage to get together we will make a concerted effort to bring these thieves to justice and shift the date line back to it's original home. Despite intense negotiations over the last 24 hours the Date Line has so far refused to shift. We sincerely hope the outcome does not involve the use of force."
As chaos and disorder ensue one man claims to have talked to the Date Line. " I have a direct link to the Date Line like people do to call centres in Mumbai." says Indian yogi Sri Maheswar from his ashram 30 kms north of Bangalore. The Date line now passes within feet of the ashram and is considered sacred. " Like everything the Date Line has consciousness. We must respect that.." Sri Maheswar continues " the Date line likes to be called Da'lin for short. Da'lin has told me that he was lonely stuck out in the middle of the empty Pacific. Now he is on solid land, amongst people and children and nature. He feels very much at home. For me this is very auspicious. The planets day now begins here" Sri Maheswar points to a small hole in the middle of an empty field. " When the first ray of sun touches earth I'm the first person to witness the new day. I sit here meditating for enlightenment or I usually have an enlightening bowel movement right in this hole. It is solid perfection."
The world's leading Philosophers have reasoned that as a result of the 'Time Lords' actions we may have to reexamine the nature of our relationship to Time. French philosopher Henri Blofeld said " The true nature of time still eludes us. It is still a paradox. This event forces us to see Time in an entirely new light and to disregard all notions of linear time or the forward flow of time." To add to the confusion within the last few hours the 'Time Lords' have issued a statement that reads
"The distinction between past, present and future is an Illusion. Time only exists because of our conscious perception of the world. In reality Time is an Illusion. We hope this radical action will force us ALL to reassess our relationship to time. We need to become timeless. See y'all in Infinity"
As always I will keep you up to date with events as they unfold whichever time zone you're in. And bearing in mind what's just been said this reporter is going to take the rest of today off and tomorrow just to be sure.