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03

Daylight Saving Time, A Sure Sign of Spring

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A sure sign of spring certainly is when we set our clock ahead and this month when I go to bed Saturday night, March 7th, I’ll be sure to do this. It’s also a good reminder to change your smoke detector batteries at home.

Daylight Saving Time (DST) means my three dogs (KD, Bear & Crosby) can be walked in the evening after work rather than in the morning. That’s a nice change for me since I’m known for not being a morning person. They aren’t too particular as long as they have their daily walk around the neighborhood.  

I know the children in the neighborhood don’t like the change. The next month or so they’ll be waiting for their school bus in the cold and dark but as soon at they are home from school, they will enjoy that extra amount of sunshine to play outdoors. And there’s always the challenge of resetting all the clocks in your house, cars and office. I still haven’t figured out how to change the clock in my car, so it was still set “ahead” so now it will be in the right time. It’s nice that our cell phones and computers somehow magically know to automatically change!

I didn’t realize DST was introduced by Benjamin Franking in 1784. He suggested that starting the day earlier in summer would save a considerable number of candles. I’m not sure it this holds true with electricity usage today but Ben was pretty smart!

DST has been in use throughout the country, Canada and Europe since World War I. However any state can opt out of DST by passing a state law. It gets so confusing when I call my family who live in Arizona who opted out. When we are on DST they are three hours behind and only two hours behind when we aren’t. It’s just easier to text them!  

I also didn’t realize the correct term is “Daylight Saving Time” rather than “Daylight Savings Time.” It’s likely the incorrect term “savings” is often used because we are used to saying “savings account.” Many people use the word “savings” because it seems to flow better as we speak. Adding to the confusion is that the phrase “Daylight Saving Time” is really inaccurate, since no daylight is actually saved. We have more usable hours of daylight. “Daylight Shifting Time” would be better, and Daylight Time Shifting more accurate, but neither is particularly appealing. Who knew? Do you use the term “saving” or “savings”?

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