It seems to me that this mans story was trying to convey his peacefulness but also how times have changed. He was telling stories of the past about all of these creative artists that he was able to work with and then you realize that he lives in a house with his wife and does art alone. He also says that he used to draw or sculpt naked woman and now he just does fish, because he fears that he would be referred to as a dirty old man. I think this change in thinking that it was okay to draw woman and not okay to draw woman happened over time. I think this story could be seen as utopian or dystopian. It could be seen as utopian because he is peaceful and doing something he loves. On the other hand I think this could be seen as dystopian because he seems to miss the past. He seems to prefer the past and what used to be, compared to where he is now.
I think that one tool Robinson uses to illustrate time is the extract or the lists. I think of those lists like memories, like writing a journal about a memory. I think Robinson uses these to show the past. To show the feelings, emotions and events that have taken place in a different timeframe. This allows the reader to learn more about swan or any other character as if they were telling us a story themselves.