Monday, March 15, 2010


Danny was working over the weekend, which meant he did not work Friday evening. After we caught up with some old programs on the DVR, I went upstairs to lie down and watch the news, Mason trailing behind me. Of course, I immediately dozed off and shortly thereafter, Danny snapped this photo:


Despite the extra sleep, I was still groggy over much of the weekend due to the time change. I hate Daylight Saving Time. One of the reasons I hope to retire in Puerto Rico is that they are on Atlantic Standard Time year round.

Indeed, as the days started growing longer, I began to enjoy the mornings more. From waking refreshed instead of groggy, to having the sunlight stream in the glass block windows as I showered. That is all over for now.

The old chestnut is that DST saves energy in the evenings. At one time, when electricity was so exorbitantly expensive that 90% of rural homes were not electrified, this was an important factor. However, with the relative reduction in energy costs (correcting for inflation, just a fraction of what they once were), energy efficient light bulbs, and street lights that operate automatically, this is no longer a factor. So, that old chestnut can be put to rest.

DST also results in inconvenience for farmers, who have one hour less in the morning to get their goods to market. Why worry about a few farmers? Because agriculture is America’s largest industry.

Daylight Saving Time runs under the justification that it will promote more evening activities such as shopping and sports. The theory goes that if it’s light outside longer, you’ll be more likely to go out for dinner, go to the mall, or go see the Indians at Progressive Field. So, the reasons we still have DST all come down to money.

I find it hard to believe that die-hard Indians fans will base their decision to see their favorite team lose based on the timing of the sunset. It may extend a restaurant’s dinner traffic, but even without DST, the sun would set at 8pm in the summer, and that’s late enough for anyone to eat. As for retail, fewer and fewer people shop at malls and “lifestyle centers” anyway, regardless of their time zone.

There was a time I used to ridicule Indiana about their refusal to adopt DST. But now I realize they were absolutely right.

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