Citizens Using Standard Time
And Real Daylight

A Few Words About Daylight Saving Time

The thing that annoys me most about Daylight Saving Time is the way people talk about it - as if it actually added an hour of daylight by some sort of magical mumbo-jumbo, when we all obviously know that this is not really the case. The sun comes up, the sun goes down. It doesn't read the clock. There is more daylight because summer is approaching and the days are getting longer on their own, but Daylight Saving is just a cheap parlor trick to convince us to get up an hour earlier in the morning. It's our behavior that changes, not the day.

Which is all well and good, mind you. I'm glad that people want to get up earlier, get a jump on the day, enjoy the summer sun, and so on. I give my blessing to all those so inclined to go ahead and get up as early as they like. What I resent is when anyone tries to force me to join in the revels by legislating the change of MY clock. Keep your hands off my clock! I have enough trouble getting up in the morning as it is.

Frankly, I think if Daylight Saving Time were talked about in terms of what it actually accomplishes - "Hey, let's all get up an hour earlier every day all summer long!" - it would have a lot less popular support than it currently does.

Also, let's consider the purpose of clocks for a moment. Clocks are a tool we use so that we can coordinate our activities with those of other people. That's all they're good for. And they're only useful if they agree with each other. Every time we change the numbers, we confuse things and compromise the clocks' ability to help us.

I wouldn't mind so much if we just changed the clocks ONCE and then left them alone for good. Sure, we'd be out of step with other places, but at least we'd be PREDICTABLY out of step. It's the fact that we keep switching the clocks back and forth, moving in and out of sync with places that don't change the clocks and people who have forgotten to change the clocks, that causes trouble. Twice a year there's a period of several days where some clocks are changed and some aren't and people get mixed up and miss appointments. My great aunt missed her sister's funeral because it was right after the clocks changed. No, really. I was there.

Daylight Saving Time is deceitful, disruptive, and silly. It's a mass delusion, a demonstration of our unfortunate predilection for following rules and abstract concepts blindly while ignoring the evidence of our senses and the dictates of our bodies. I wouldn't be at all surprised if it started as a performance art piece intended to test the willingness of the public to accept the absurd.

It's time for this foolishness to stop. I'm resisting. So should you.

Things You Can Do

Refuse to comply. Don't reset your clocks. This will likely result in some confusion on your part until the majority joins you. Revolution often requires personal sacrifice.

Demonstrate. Show up an hour late for work the first day after Daylight Saving begins. Claim you forgot.

Politicize. Write your congressional representative. Do it twice a year, when the clocks change. The first few people will be considered cranks and will probably wind up on a list somewhere, but once the politicians get enough letters they'll realize it's a movement.

Emphasize. Raise consciousness in your day-to-day interactions with people. When anyone wants to know the time, be sure to ask if they're still using Daylight Saving. Say it with the same tone you'd use if you were asking whether they still use buggy whips or 8-track tapes.

Ritualize. Destroy a clock at two a.m. on the day DST begins. Probably the clock should be one of your own.

Fraternize. Send a note to custard@phrenopolis.com and ask to be on the CUSTARD mailing list. Not that anything actually gets sent out on the mailing list, but it's comforting to know that others are out there, isn't it? Some day we can organize events and stuff like that.

Evangelize. Get a "Hands Off My Clock" bumper sticker. Or make a more directed statement about the absurdity of DST by hanging up an Augmentation Chronometer, preferably at work.
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Colorize. Just switch to International Color Time and call it a day.