necessity

Archived Story

Save daylight all year long

Published 6:17pm Monday, November 4, 2013

Don’t ask me what time it is. I just don’t know any more. My internal clock has been wrong since around 2 a.m. Sunday morning.
I’ve felt like I was running late for one thing or another since Sunday morning.
The end of Daylight Savings Time has thrown me for a loop this year, and I don’t want to do it anymore.
Now I love the spring-forward aspect of our biannual clock adjustment. I look at my clock at 6 p.m. in the summertime, and there is still a solid hour and a half to play.
But more daylight in the mornings doesn’t do me very much good. Some might disagree, but getting the children ready for school, waiting in the drop off line and nursing a cup of coffee are activities unaffected by the brightness outdoors.
I’m mostly operating on muscle memory and sonar at that hour, anyway.
But the afternoon hours are priceless. During the blessed DST, I get off work and find there’s still time to have a catch with my son, or watch my daughter climb trees and ride her bike in the yard.
But as of Sunday, the sun’s already casting long shadows at 5 p.m. Add in the drive home and it feels like bedtime even before I’ve  enjoyed my “Daddy’s home!” hug.
Daylight is a precious commodity. Why on earth would we stop saving it? Isn’t conservation a good thing?
Despite my careful preparations Saturday night, rolling back alarm clocks, the microwave and stove, Sunday felt like a day of confusion. The “extra hour of sleep” was quickly forgotten.
We got ready for Sunday night church an hour earlier than needed. Driving through downtown Eclectic, I panicked to read a bank clock that said I was 30 minutes late to pick the children up.
My car – forgotten in the Saturday-night roll-back spree – seconded the bank’s pronouncement. My stomach dropped, and I checked my cell phone to see if I’d missed an irritated call from the youth pastor.
Then I remembered. At no point Saturday night did I venture outside to “fall back” the automobile clocks. And (understandably) the employees of Eclectic’s downtown financial institution didn’t come in during the wee hours Sunday to make the big clock read correctly.
My imagined disaster was averted, though it would never have mattered if not for this ridiculous rush to darkness.
Farmers, I presume, are appreciative of the extra hour in the morning. When I get grumpy about something, I try to ponder who might find benefits in whatever irritation is on my mind.
And on this one, the farmers are it. And even that’s just a product of the constant drone of explication behind the whole DST racket.
It’s a leftover remnant from our formerly agrarian society, I’ve read. I’m open to be convinced, I guess. But I know I like my daylight during hours I can best enjoy it.
We can’t do anything about the sun’s stubborn refusal to shine longer each day.
Earth seems pretty determined to keep shifting on its axis as it circles the sun, oblivious to the pronouncements of local newspaper writers.
But can we at least stop this clock-shifting edict that exacerbates the problem?
Goodwin is a staff writer for The Outlook.

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