Stupid Time

If you’re wondering why this post appeared earlier (or later) than you expected, it’s because you didn’t set your clocks forward.

Words cannot describe my dislike for the foolishness known as “Daylight Savings Time” (or, as Drew Carey [?] once described it, “Making yourself taller by cutting off your head, then standing on it”).

All the crap justifications for its creation (in the U.S., anyway) have been proven to be either false or else unknowable. Power savings, crisper vegetables (!), greater outdoor recreation: whatever was promised, it didn’t — and doesn’t — happen.

The only people who truly benefit from DST are retailers, who discovered that “increased” daylight hours caused more people to go shopping. (And of course, when Americans go shopping, they don’t walk across the street to the corner haberdashery, oh no: they get in their cars and zoom off en masse to the mall. So much for reducing power consumption.) So the Chambers of Commerce, naturally enough, are all over this silliness because dollars.

For the rest of us, it’s just a huge PITA — especially if, like me, you have a whole bunch of analog mechanical clocks in the house — and under the reign of Emperor Kim, the banning of DST will follow immediately after the Obama / Clinton / Pelosi / [insert your person of choice here] executions.

The Brits, by the way, are shackled to DST because in Scotland, the inhabitants really need the “extra” hour of daylight lest they become still more depressed and kill themselves in still-greater numbers. (Mr. Free Market suggests that instead of adding an hour, we subtract one to hasten this self-elimination process, but he’s still irritated that the British Army didn’t get to “finish the job” at Culloden, so we can ignore his fevered rantings for once.)

It seems as though at least one person at The Smithsonian agrees with me, not that I seek or need validation. And if The Donald wants to guarantee my vote in 2020, he’ll put an end to this crap by signing an Executive Order decreeing that the Federal Government will no longer observe DST (which, by the way, as the Chief Executive he is empowered to do). Besides, as any fule kno, time is malleable anyway.


  1. I am one of the few people who likes having more daylight at the end of the day, I did not ming getting up in the dark and driving to work and then having more time at the end of the day with sunlight, I would like to keep Texas on the shift forward year round. Last job I had doing technical stuff we had flex time, we were supposed to work about 7 to 9 hours per day and at the end of the week have forty hours clocked in, we could start anytime from 7:30 until 9:00 am and shut our computers down anytime between 4:00 and 7:00 pm,

    Now that I am retired it does not matter so much as long as my clocks are set forward which is a pain since I like to get up between 6 and 7 am, I think it is an old people thing. As for having time zones, until the railroads starting moving around there was no need for time to vary, each town had their own town clocks and bell towers and high noon was when the sun was directly overhead. Traveling at the speed of horses it made little difference if you took several days to go 100 miles, East or West and the time difference.

    Of course navigation on water and land did benefit by being able to take a fix on the sun or stars to establish your position, the breakthrough in clocks that did not require a pendulum was a big deal, and all that horological stuff.

    Another fun silly note, some folks end the day at sunset which means each day varies in length and in ancient time there were 12 hours of sun and 12 hours of darkness with the lengths varying by the seasons, maybe we could go to that and have some great complicated watches and clocks. I don’t know, time is a funny thing and the older I get the faster it goes and I am not sure how that works either.

    1. ” I don’t know, time is a funny thing and the older I get the faster it goes and I am not sure how that works either.”

      It only seems to go faster because as we age the period of “one day” is a smaller and smaller percentage of our time on Earth.
      Think back to when you were a small child and the summer vacation seemed to last forever. Back then a day was a much larger percentage of your time on Earth. Therefore, time seemed to run more slowly.

      But that’s just my opinion. I could be wrong.

      1. That’s my opinion as well.

        In fact, just last week I was 15. Well, it seems just like last week.

        And last week? A few seconds, tops.

        1. Paraphrasing Forrest Gump, “Life is like a roll of toilet paper – it goes away faster as you use it.”

      2. No disrespect Ralph sir, but after much research, I concluded that the ‘relativity theory’ is wrong.
        What really happens is that as we grow older, our pendulum becomes shorter, and thus the period is shorter, and clocks run faster. Eventually the hands on the clock are beating around at amazing speed!
        Other age related phenomenon include shortening of the arms, making it harder to reach things on the ground: also gravity becomes stronger, which means that our mass now weighs more, and the pull of gravity turns a minor stumble into a fall.
        Hair relocates from our skull so that sunlight can keep our brains warmer, but that causes trouble in Winter. And the hair usually relocates to our ears and nose!
        So worry not, it is all normal.

  2. Drop DST, and while you’re at it establish CONUS as just one time zone. Them as needs to work by sunlight (Frankin’s original justification) will do so regardless of the clock, and transcontinental commerce will run more efficiently when you can call on someone knowing that he won’t have gone home or not even arrived yet.

  3. I think a lot depends on precisely where you live. I’m on the East Coast, and DST instantly transfers an hour’s daylight from the pre-work morning to the late afternoon. Where it’s a lot more useful. If you were living in Ohio…probably a lot less beneficial.

    Now, I do think we go onto DST a bit too early in the year, and come off it too late…but only by a few weeks.

  4. On a happy note, PNG doesn’t do clock shifting- we really don’t need it, being on the equator and all.

    However, during one visit to Australia when they didn’t shift the clocks, it was bright streaming daylight at 5am. That I would rather do without.

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