Opinion

Our strange, continued acceptance of Daylight saving time

Daylight Saving Time (DST) doesn’t save on overall energy costs any more. But no one’s protesting.

We’re roasting in both spring and summer. The extra hour we have to leave air conditioners on full blast offsets any efficiencies created by this relic of war time first introduced by President Woodrow Wilson in 1918.

Personally, I don’t like losing an hour in March only to be gained back in November.

When I was a kid, I liked DST because of the “fall back” component of it. I could sleep in an hour longer. Spring ahead was the opposite—you’re springing ahead into the “lose one hour vortex” that is DST.

Both segments of this odd institution disrupt sleep and in some countries, lovemaking rhythms, too.

Consider if DST never existed…ever.

President Woodrow Wilson and his war cabinet.

President Woodrow Wilson and his war cabinet. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

And President Trump wanted to sign it into being with an executive order. It would be part of his Make America Great Again plan.

I think you know where I’m going with this.

There would be calls for his impeachment.

“Crazy!”

“Preposterous!”

“Insane!”

Whacko!”

“Delusional!”

“Kills jobs!”

Retailers generally favor DST. United Cigar St...

Retailers generally favor DST. United Cigar Stores hailed a 1918 DST bill. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I think I would be among the people calling it a bad idea.

The promise of sleeping in an extra hour on the first Sunday of November is never typically fulfilled. This is especially true for pet owners.

Our dogs do not operate by DST. They want their walks and they want their grub at pretty much the same times every day. This is the natural way of things.

“Sorry Fido, but you’ve got to wait an hour more today and then it’ll all make sense until November. Trust me.”

If you’re really serious about saving energy these days, you need to try other things rather than manipulating the clock an hour, two times a year.

I lose sleep over not just actual DST, but thinking about whether aliens in outer space view our compliance with it as a pending sign of the Apocalypse.

“Why do they do it, Herb?”

“I don’t know, Sara.”

“It seems strange. Why not try really shaking things up, creating change and choose six hours as the differential on each occasion they’re supposed to be manipulating the clock.”

“I think they’d think that too radical.”

“And doing it only an hour is less radical by virtue of what, exactly?”

“I dunno.”

Neither do I.

Unfortunately, DST is probably the closest to time travel I’ll ever experience in my lifetime. The DST Time Machine is a game I tired of playing a long, long time ago, though.

Photograph of William Willett, builder, outdoo...

Photograph of William Willett, builder, outdoorsman, and inventor of daylight saving time. Handwritten below the original print is “Mr. Wm. Willett. Author of the Daylight Bills of 1908 and 1909. 1909. J. Benjamin Stone” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Don’t forget to change your clocks!

My clock is the epitome of the words unflinching independence, except when it comes to its batteries running out or DST.

It seems none of us can agree on anything anymore. But whether or not we agree with it, we fall in line like good soldiers and change the clocks each time DST mandates, and usually well before 2 a.m. or whenever we’re supposed to do it.

I sometimes wonder about other downsides to DST.

Let’s say you’re a baby that’s born at 2 a.m. on the second Sunday in March.

I don’t want to google this nor do I have a nurse, doctor or hospital administrative worker I can confer with on hand. I’m sure you can have either 2 a.m. or 3 a.m. on your birth certificate when you’re born.

I don’t think that’s any big deal, really, other than knowing you immediately experienced a really, really quick first hour of life. Perhaps it might be a big deal if once you’re an adult, you’re considering having your astrological chart done by an individual who is very precise.

“I need your exact date and time of birth, Bob.”

“I was born either an hour too soon or an hour too late, depending on how you look at it.”

Hopefully I won’t be a dollar short, too, but once the electric, I mean the energy bills, start rolling in during summer, you never know.

If you live in an area that experiences traditional four seasons of weather, you end up paying more for your heating bills during winter months because of one less hour of daylight.

DST needs to go away if only for the fact it’s now an hour past my bedtime and my ability to debate the negative consequences of DST has been severely impacted. Thanks a lot.

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