Globe and Mail columnist Ron Mickleburgh opens his article in the Saturday edition of that paper with the following lead:
In mere days, Vancouver’s turn in the Olympic spotlight will be just six months away.
a curious circumlocution which provides us with an excellent example of the chronologically relative tense – also known as the Slaughterhouse-Five tense, after the Kurt Vonnegut novel which features a character who has become “unstuck in time.”
I suppose we should be grateful to the Globe’s editors: things could have been even more opaque; a Geist mole inside the Globe’s Vancouver bureau has provided us with an early draft of Mickleburgh’s piece, which, in its initial state, began
Two years, seven months and a few days from a week ago next Wednesday, we will be able to cast back our minds six years, four months, three weeks and two days to a point in time when the opening of the 2010 Winter Olympics was still four years and six months or so away.