I’m kind of surprised at all the moaning about the new early arrival of daylight savings time. Some of it is just silly. I, of course, love it but then I have my own extremist time agenda (also see here).
The worst complaining came from people (mostly in the media) worried about certain electronic devices that were not designed to automatically reset themselves to the earlier DST. I ran into this problem with a few of our alarm clocks and my cell phone. In both cases I simply moved the time up to Eastern Standard Time and was fine. I’ll have to move them back to Central Time in a few weeks but whatever. Burt that was it, no problems with our PCs and there were no crashed airlines in my backyard. I looked to be sure. Mini Y2K indeed, nothing happened.
Another “problem” with the earlier DST is that, according to one expert, we are going to see higher gas prices because with that extra hour of evening daylight (for three weeks) we are going to be driving a lot more. Or something. I’m not going to drive any more or less because of the later sunset but supposedly others will for some reason.
But the silliest whine about the new and improves DST came from a post over at the HuffPo last week which I’m too lazy to go track down. The author of this post posited that there would be all manners of carnage as school busses mowed down innocent children waiting for their rides to school in the inky blackness. Apparently, daylight savings time darkness is much darker than normal darkness.
This same argument was made to end the year-round DST the Nixon administration brought us back in, I think, 1973. Stories then abounded about how kids were being hit by buses and vehicles because drivers couldn’t see them in the dark. I don’t remember any real stories about this happening in disproportionate numbers with the legend apparently has lived on.
There’s one problem this time around though. Under the new DST the sun will rise no later than it did for much of December and January. I don’t recall driving through pools of kids’ blood on my way to work then. And if sunrises that late are a problem, then why don’t we go to a negative DST (setting our clocks back another hour) in the darkest months so that the kids are safe then too?
Anyway, I’m glad to have the extra light at the end of the day. And, as with any good extremist, I’m not satisfied and won’t be until we get even more evening light all year, every year.