It is time for my semi-annual rant and wish that G.V. Hudson had a different hobby. Hudson, a New Zealander, collected insects and was a shift worker. In 1895 he proposed Daylight Savings Time so he could collect insects after work in daylight. The world rightly ignored his idea but it was also championed by a golfer William Willett in 1907. He fought for it tirelessly and the world rightfully ignored him as well. But, to save energy during WWI, Germany adopted Daylight Saving Time and soon other countries in the conflict followed. The pox has been on humanity since. In the fall Americans set their clocks back to standard time, or what I call solar time. In the spring they go back on artificial time.
As I have mentioned before I stopped changing my clocks years ago. I absolutely refuse to go on “daylight savings time.” The entire idea strikes me a silly particularly when one considers there is a fixed amount of daylight no matter how we set our clocks. It is rightfully called “daylight slaving time.” Only the government would cut the top foot off a blanket, sew it on the bottom, and then argue the blanket is longer.
What really got to me was the seasonal flipping, spring forward, fall back. It always left me out of sorts for weeks. Now I don’t flip. I don’t change when I get up, when I eat, when I go to bed or when I feed the animals. This family stays on solar time. I just recognize that for half the year the rest of the country thinks it is ahead of me by one hour.
Fortunately nature is not so wrong headed. Animals and plants ignore the time change. Cows get milked at the same time no matter what hour it is. Plants grow the same while we pretend there is more light in the evenings during summer. (Though as a kid I remember marveling that at 9 p.m. it was still light outside.)
There is also a philosophical reasons. So much of our lives is artificial. And artificial “daylight savings” time is but one more thing to knock us out of sync with the world around us. I spend a lot of time with Mother Nature and I prefer her time to man’s. And grumpy me, I like to use my watches (12 and 24-hour) as compasses, and that’s easier if one stays on solar time. Thus I do. And more than one study shows it actually cost more to go on Daylight Savings Time.
From a factual point of view, the majority of people on earth do NOT go on daylight savings time. How sensible. Asia doesn’t nor does Africa. Most equatorial countries don’t. Great Britain and Ireland tried staying on DST permanently from 1968 to 1971 but went back because it was unpopular. Most of Arizona does not go on DST either. Lead the way Arizona. Daylight Savings Time is a bad idea that needs to go away.