I’m late again ….. where does the time go?!

Meetings with shubz has turned into a weekly ritual. My postgrad is looming and we are getting close to a finished product. Shubz has not only coded the front end he has made the pages responsive and friendly to mobile usage. I have managed to fuse the backend data models with forms on the pages. There’s always a spark of excitement when your code finally runs!


Me and Shubz coding


Something that doesn’t spark excitement in others is my recent slump of turning up late. I honestly don’t intend to, it’s that I just lose track of time. Although this can easily be filed under general moaning this can be a serious issue in patient safety. There have been a number of plane crashes where the pilot was so focused on the task at hand he lost track of time, in-turn paying little attention to the warnings of the crew at the fuel was running low. On interview the pilot was surprised at how quickly the fuel ran out, speculating that there must have been a fault in fuel storage. The black box suggested different.

Ok so most of my readers are clinicians. The famous clinical example of this is the death of Elaine Bromiley, where the consultants were so focused on the difficult incubation that they lost track of time and brushed off the suggestion of a tracheostomy by the nurse. They didn’t realise that 20 minutes of no oxygenation had gone by. Analysis on the plane and Elaine situation is covered in the book: Black Box thinking. Although it’s easy to write this off as arrogance or incompetence we have to realise that it’s just human nature. Anyone who’s done a talk will be surprised at how quickly the time goes. When I was studying for my finals in quantum mechanics, my time tracking was so out I was shocked when it got dark outside.

So docs be thankful to those “moaning” nurses. Whilst you lose track of time trying to solve complex problems these moaners with their targets are keeping the cogs oiled and saving lives in a less glamorous but fundamental way. As for me, I’m going to try and not focus on interesting problems hours before a meeting.

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