Mr. Fix It: No time wasted on repairing campus clocks

The day started off like any other day. I arrived 10 minutes early for my 8 a.m. class after having studied deep into the night. I decided to put my head down in hopes of catching a few Zs before the professor started lecturing.

I awoke in a panic, according to the clock I’d been sitting there for six hours. Alarmed, I checked the time on my satellite wristwatch and saw that I’d only been there for five minutes. In a rage, I plunged into solving the problem.

Charles Meyer, the interim senior director of Facilities and Service Enterprises at SF State, said if there are clocks that need to be fixed, he wants to know about them.

“Everything from the restrooms to the clocks are monitored by thousands of people every day,” Meyer said. “We have a list full of almost a thousand things to be taken care of and we don’t mind adding to the list, but it’s just a matter of bringing it to our attention.”

Meyer said once he gets a call to fix a clock, he submits a work order to the maintenance department where they log it in on a long list of things to do.

“We will get to everything that needs fixing, it’s just a matter of taking care of everything in order of importance,” Meyer said. “Clocks are important, but our first concern is making sure the campus is safe, then keeping it clean, keeping it well-lit and making sure the heat and ventilation are running OK.”

Raymond Castillo, the electric shop supervisor of the facilities department, said he gets about 11 phone calls each month to change a clock showing the incorrect time.

Castillo said most clocks need to be replaced with a brand new one because they can no longer operate. New clocks can cost about $100. There are also clocks on campus that are controlled by satellite and they simply have to relay a signal back to the clock.

“We get the most phone calls to fix the clocks whenever there is a time change or a power outage,” Castillo said. “The power outages are a really big pain for us because there are so many clocks in one area that need attention and we are sorely understaffed.”

Now armed with the proper knowledge of how our clocks work and how they get attended to, I asked Castillo if he could replace a clock that refused to go past 11:25 in one of my classrooms. Within five minutes he was able to set me up with electric shop worker Manny DeGuzman to go about fixing my problem.

Armed with only a ladder, a new clock and almost 20 years of experience, DeGuzman was able to replace the troublesome clock in under 10 minutes.

“See, it’s easy,” DeGuzman said. “All you have to do is let me know what needs to be fixed and I’ll take care of it.”

As you enter yet another restroom in need of cleaning, someone’s going to be there to make that miracle happen. As you narrowly avoid a crack that may have broken your ankles on your way to class, someone will be there with a sign that says, “watch your step.”

When people in power say things just can’t be done, someone has finally decided to take it upon himself to address the wrongs of our campus. That someone is Mr. Fix It.

Please feel free to drop by the Mr. Fix It headquarters, better known as Humanities Room 310, if you want to drop by and inform me of what needs fixing.

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