Falling back a confusing proposition for those who might be ‘set in their ways’

Published 11:38 pm Saturday, November 2, 2013

Daylight Saving Time ended today. So did you remember to set your clock back an hour? If you didn’t, everything will be out of kilter today and maybe for several days until your body and your mind get adjusted.

I really dislike the time changes, but nobody asked my opinion before they set it in motion. Since I’m getting older, there are a lot of changes in life that I disapprove of, but I won’t get into that here. Maybe it has a little something to do with getting older and set in one’s ways.

As for the time change twice a year — in March and November — it seems to be something we have to learn to live with, whether we like it or not. “Spring forward, fall backwards” is the key. Without that little reminder, we would all be lost.

If you decide to buck it and just leave your clocks where they are, you will most likely be out of step with the rest of the world and probably mighty confused. I know I would be. In fact, I am anyway!

However, let’s look on the bright side – that hour of sleep you lost last March when DST kicked in? You now have it back. But — that sunlight you still had at home when you came in from work? You just lost it.

In fact, for most of the winter you will be in the dark when you get home. So we gain a little, and we lose a little.

Actually the time we are experiencing right now is what we used to have before DST went into effect. Some refer to it as “God’s time.” It is what we had when I was growing up. That was a time when most everything was a whole lot less confusing.

During the past summer months, I got up at 6 a.m., dressed, put on my walking shoes and got my exercise in before the morning heat. A few weeks ago, I started to notice that at 6 it was still pretty dark, so I had to wait until daylight to go outside – which was closer to 7 o’clock.

So now that I am talking about it, I find myself a little more confused. Does it mean that I can now walk at 6 a.m. because it will be an hour later?

Maybe. That is until winter goes along and the days get shorter and shorter. It is all just too confusing to try to figure out until we live it for a few days.

Do you know who really is responsible for all this confusion? I looked it up and was surprised to find that it was none other than Ben Franklin! Yes, old Ben who said “early to bed, early to rise,” etc.  

Apparently, while serving as ambassador to France he wrote about being awakened at 6 a.m. and surprise, surprise! He found the sun rose far earlier than he usually did. He thought about the resources that might be saved if he got up before noon and burned less midnight oil. He wrote about his ideas and sent it to a newspaper. He realized the benefit but didn’t know how to bring it about.  

If you are interested, consult the Internet for the complete history of DST. That’s where I learned about our friend Ben. Suffice it to say, whether good or bad, it seems to be another way that the government uses to keep us confused. Thank goodness for calendars to keep us straight!

Meanwhile, if you didn’t set your clock back last night — or I should say early this morning — then you are probably going to be late for church. Or will you be early for church?

Confusion, confusion! I suppose I’ll just have to get dressed, go to church and see if I am late or early. Somehow I have a feeling I won’t be the only one.

Retired Lifestyle Editor Bob Ann Breland, a resident of Pine, writes a weekly column and may be contacted at bobann_b @ yahoo. com.