While browsing through material in the recesses of the Roman Section of the British Museum, a researcher recently came across a tattered bit of parchment. After some effort he translated it and found it was a letter from a man called Plutonius with the title of "magister factorium," or keeper of the calendar, to one Cassius. It was dated, strangely enough, 2 BC, December 3 — about 2,000 years ago. The text of the message follows:
Are you still working on the Y zero K problem? This change from BC to AD is giving us a lot of headaches and we haven’t much time left. I don’t know how people will cope with working the wrong way around. Having been working happily downwards forever, now we have to start thinking upwards. You would think that someone would have thought of it earlier and not left it to us to sort it all out at this last Minute.
I spoke to Caesar the other evening. He was livid that Julius hadn’t done something about it when he was sorting out the calendar. He said he could see why Brutus turned nasty. We called in Consultus, but he simply said that continuing downwards using minus BC won’t work and as usual charged a fortune for doing nothing useful. Surely, we will not have to throw out all our hardware and start again? Macrohard will make yet another fortune out of this I suppose.
The money lenders are paranoid of course! They have been told that all usury rates will invert and they will have to pay their clients to take out loans. Its an ill wind….
As for myself, I just can’t see the sand in an hourglass flowing upwards. We have heard that there are three wise men in the East who have been working on the problem, but unfortunately they won’t arrive until it’s all over.
I have heard that there are plans to stable all horses at midnight at the turn of the year as there are fears that they will stop and try to run backwards, causing immense damage to chariots and possible loss of life. Some say the world will cease to exist at the moment of transition. Anyway, we are still continuing to work on this blasted Y zero K problem.
I will send a parchment to you if anything further develops. If you have any ideas please let me know,