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Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year! (GMT) 

Considering that neither Evelin nor I are feeling capable of staying up to ring in the New Year at midnight EST this year, and adding in the fact that Celeste — while she did have a wild wakeup around midnight last night/this morning) — is not a stay-up-late-to-party girl, we decided to call together a few neighborhood friends who also have kids to mark midnight Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).

We're planning to have some fondue (cheese and chocolate), champagne (for those imbibing), sparking lemonade (for those not), and other assorted nosh. Last night, Evelin made some breadsticks, and right now she is making an angel food cake and cutting up pineapple and other foods for dipping.

We'll probably stream Virgin Radio or the Moray Firth Radio's Hogmanay Cèilidh and have a nice, early evening ...

Adding to the fun for marking the GMT New Year is that at 23:59:59 UTC±0:00, the clock won't flip immediately to 00:00:00; instead we get a leap second at 23:59:60 UTC±0:00. (Leap seconds are inserted worldwide at the same moment, so it will be marked in Eastern Standard Time at 6:59:60 p.m.) Of course, some people want to abolish leap seconds, but I think they're pretty cool and worth keeping. (Not that I have a vote at the ITU or anything, but ...)

UPDATE: 8:11 p.m. EST and everyone's left and we're about 85% cleaned up — not bad for a New Year's Eve party ... I'm quite full of cheese and a bit of champagne (Schramsberg Mirabelle Brut Méthode Champenoise, multivintage from California) at the moment. Evelin wasn't as in to the cèilidh as I was and the Virgin Radio music was a bit bland, so we mostly played some old jazz and swing as background music and flipped on the Virgin stream at 6:58 p.m. EST in time to hear the bells ringing in the New Year in London. Sadly, we missed noting the leap second. Oh well, next time ...

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