October 30, 2005

An Extra Hour for Complaining

I WAS IN a rare good mood today. The sun was out when I woke up, and it was a nice, crisp, clear day -- perfect for football, outdoor activities, and what have you. Plus, I got an extra hour of sleep because last night, we switched from Daylight Saving Time back to Standard Time, and that kicked ass.

Unfortunately, the sun set at 4:40 p.m. today, and that gave me plenty of time to stew. In this first evening back on Standard Time, in the wretched darkness that serves as a harbinger of winter's hideous polar gloom, I realized I had no reason to be happy. After all, I hadn't gained anything over the interceding six months except two weeks of headaches, misery and anguish stemming from the first time change. Now, I'm supposed to be happy because I got an hour -- an hour stolen from me in the first place -- back?

Sure, maybe I'm getting too worked up about this, but I've hated Daylight Saving Time for a long while. It increases traffic accidents, reduces productivity, and contributes to fatigue, nausea, indigestion, gum disease and ennui. At least that's what generally what happens to me. In rare cases, I'm sure Daylight Saving Time also causes gout, rheumatic fever and typhus, just due to the stress of having one's sleep patterns disrupted. If you don't believe that DST causes big trouble, just look at the University of Indiana's football team, which is 1-4 in Big Ten play.

In my own case, my hate for DST stems from my childhood in Kalamazoo, Mich., when the sky would routinely stay light until 9, 9:30 or even 10 p.m. around the start of summer. This screwed up my sleep patterns, and as a boy I recall going to bed when it was light out quite a lot. Admittedly, this happened because we were on the far western end of the Eastern time zone. But that also meant a lot of long dark mornings, particularly at the start of DST in the early spring.

Now that we're back on standard time, and I'm here in New Hampshire, I have the opposite problem. I pretty much wake up with the sun every day, but the sun sets before 5 p.m. By the time winter rolls around, it will practically set about 4 p.m. This results in reduced productivity and contributes to fatigue, nausea, indigestion, gum disease and ennui.

I don't think it's too much to ask that I only go through just one misery-inducing seasonal experience each year. I'm just saying.

Posted by Benjamin Kepple at October 30, 2005 11:07 PM | TrackBack


You realize Bloomington, IN does not observe Daylight Savings Time, correct? Only Indiana's suburbs of Chicago are in Central Time and do participate in the switcheroo.

Posted by: simon from jersey at October 31, 2005 03:10 PM


Yeah, but think of all the traveling the University of Indiana players must do. That's sure to screw up their internal clocks and DST must make it worse. Somehow.

Posted by: Benjamin Kepple at October 31, 2005 06:57 PM