The Watering Hole, Saturday, March 9, 2013: The Spring Forward Position

“Spring Forward, Fall Back.” It seems we learned that one before we learned the Lord’s Prayer. (Some of you may have learned that one faster than the rest of us.) But why do we do it? Wasn’t Daylight Savings Time something Ben Franklin thought up? Wasn’t it supposed to be for the benefit of the farmers, so they would have more daylight to harvest their crops and work their fields? Don’t they have alarm clocks now? Can’t they just let the rest of us sleep?

The answers are: To save energy. Yes. Yes. I’m sure they do. No.

Not going along with it may defeat the point, to save energy. You see, the theory goes that if daylight lasts a little longer, there will be less demand for turning on lights. It is assumed that during the extended hour of darkness the next morning, you’ll have fewer lights turned on.

But, contrary to right wing conspiracy theories that I have no doubt exist, it is not a plot to take away the freedom of the states. It’s not mandatory.

Not everybody goes along with the plan. Arizona sticks with Mountain Standard Time, which turns out to be the same as Pacific Daylight Time. (The Navajo Nation, however, goes along with the summertime switch.) Hawaii and U.S. possessions such as American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands are also staying on standard time.

Most European countries don’t switch to summer time until the last weekend in March. That means the usual time difference will be out of sync for three weeks. For example, when it’s noon in New York, it’ll be 4 p.m. in London. But starting March 31, the five-hour difference between the two cities’ clocks will be back in force.

Some countries in the Southern Hemisphere move their clocks back an hour at this time of year. In Brazil, for example, the switch from daylight saving time to standard time took place in mid-February.

It’s also a good idea to try to get to get back to your normal sleep routine (at the new hour) as soon as you can. Losing sleep for even a few days in a row can weaken your immune system, and you’ll be more susceptible to colds and viruses.

BTW, the time change takes effect this Sunday morning, 2 AM EST. At that moment, it changes to 3 AM EDT. Set your clocks ahead one hour before you go to bed Saturday Night.

It’s also a good time of year to change the batteries in your smoke detectors.

This is our daily open thread. Feel free to discuss Daylight Savings Time, Benjamin Franklin, farmers, or anything you else you want to discuss. I’m going back to sleep.

41 thoughts on “The Watering Hole, Saturday, March 9, 2013: The Spring Forward Position

  1. As long as I’m on time for UP, I’m OK with DST. All my clocks update automatically except the one in the bathroom, and it needs a new battery, so I’ll change it and the time.

  2. I lived in Arizona — Phoenix — for more than forty years and believe me, during summer in Arizona there is NO REASON to “save” an hour of daylight! It would, in fact, be really great if we could figure out a way to LOSE two or three hours of the damn stuff!

    These days, I’d like it a lot if Colorado ceased with the clock-switching nonsense too. I much prefer the early morning hours when it’s nice and cool outside, great time for a long walk. In the evenings it’s hot for an hour longer than necessary thanks to the clock switch, so all we do is sit around with the AC running, wasting electricity. Daylight LOSING time — setting the clocks back an hour instead of ahead — in the summer would make a LOT more sense: longer cool mornings, shorter hot evenings.

    A friend from AZ doesn’t call it Daylight Savings Time, he calls it Daylight Wasting Time. He’s about got it, far as I’m concerned. Our cat, meanwhile, doesn’t notice. She doesn’t waste time with tick-tock clocks, she has her own built in clock which works just fine. Would that humans could one day evolve to the intellectual level of the cat … but I’ll not hold my breath in anticipation.

  3. I’m about ten minutes behind on UP as they are discussing the methodology of their analysis of politicians’ perceptions vs, reality. Their entire theory is totally flawed if they are basing even one percent of their data, on things John Boehner and Mitch McConnell say that ‘the American people want’. The entire Republican Party knows to lie their ass off about issues, because Frank Luntz told them to do it. A certain percentage of unaffected people will believe a lie, if they think they themselves are being consistent with the majority, because it makes them comfortable. That’s why so many people think they should be against universal healthcare. Until they or someone close to them becomes negatively affected by the corrupt system, they don’t see anything wrong with the status quo.

    • I can’t abide folks who claim to speak for the silent majority, when the truth is that so few people agree with them that they were unable to get anyone to show up and speak up.

    • We can equate Reid with Caspar Milquetoast

      …”the man who speaks softly and gets hit with a big stick”. The character’s name is a deliberate misspelling of the name of a bland and fairly inoffensive food, milk toast.

  4. Well the time change works out great for me. My husband doesn’t close his business until 6 (opens at 7) and he’ll go for a walk with me and the dogs after work while it’s still light out. And we get to sit out back and watch A-Jay and Riley chase squirrels or moths or dragonflies. I’m excited.

  5. I use the twice-a-year time change to remind me to change the brush head on my electric toothbrush … and to wash my underwear.

  6. Pamela Geller: CPAC is “enforcing the Shariah”

    Right Wing Watch reports that Geller was speaking on “The Janet Mefferd Show” about her recent snub from this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference, at which she usually holds an unofficial panel. “This year I could not get an event, I was banned,” she said, though also noted that in the past, “I wasn’t warmly welcomed because of the influence of what can only be described as Muslim Brotherhood facilitators or operatives like [ex-Bush staffer and Muslim] Suhail Khan and [anti-tax conservative ] Grover Norquist.”

    Somebody get me a program! I can’t tell who’s playing on which team anymore!

    • I guess it’s good that Pamela Geller and her ilk are unwelcome at CPAC, but considering who else isn’t welcome (Chrsitie), and who is welcome there (Palin, Romney), I don’t hold out any hope that the Conservative Movement is getting its act together.

  7. As an evening person, I like this extra daylight in the evening. As the days get warmer, Nonewhere and I spend most of our evening hours outside either on the front porch or the patio. Longer daylight means longer time spent outdoors. Thanks for posting this reminder.

    • Me too. When I was in grade-school we had someone come to the school and give a concert. Almost every chance I got after that I tried to get a glass to sing.

  8. Hooray! Power is back.
    In answer to Cats’ question, the pigs were born Wednesday night during the snow. Petunia is proving to be an excellent mother to the nine babies. They’re already growing and playing.

    • I went to sleep last night, and six hours later, I got up just like any other day. What was the big deal about the clocks again? 😀

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