After springing forward last Sunday, most of us feel like we are in a time warp. While it is easy to adjust one’s watch, it is not quite as easy to reset our body clocks. What the digital display indicates the time is does not agree with what our bodies are telling us it is.
But what is some disruption to our body clocks when we can have Daylight Saving Time and make better use of our daylight hours? Who knew that simply manipulating a time display would magically transform us into good stewards of our time?
We can thank good old Benjamin Franklin for the idea of Daylight Saving Time. He conceived this idea while serving as an American delegate in Paris in 1784. Being in the City of Lights must have set off a light bulb in his head as to how to produce more evening daylight hours. Perhaps Ben needed more time at the end of the day to sit at a sidewalk cafe while it was still light, watch the world go by and come up with pithy sayings such as “Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.” Mais oui!
Unfortunately, when we have to spring forward the time change occurs at 2:00 a.m. How convenient–if you are vampire Edward Cullen of Twilight fame and don’t sleep. Except for sleep-deprived parents of infants up for a feeding, what normal people are awake at that wee hour of the morning to set a clock forward?
To help us remember which way to adjust our clocks, we have the cute saying, “Spring forward and fall back.” Of course, that saying presumes you know what season you are in; often I wake up and don’t know what day it is much less what season I am in. Throw 2:00 a.m into the mix as the time the adjustment is to be made and odds are something might get confused when resetting a clock.
Spring forward occurs on the second Sunday in March. Silly me. I thought March Madness had to do with basketball. Nope. The real March Madness occurs in the days following the clock adjustment when you wake up at the time your clock says you routinely get up, but you are exhausted and it is dark outside. You are mad at the ridiculous idea of getting up when your body is clearly telling you it isn’t time to start the day yet. Mercifully, we gain an hour when we fall back on the first Sunday in November giving us a little something extra to be thankful for on Thanksgiving. Woo hoo! Back to the real time!
Of course Daylight Saving Time has always been controversial. Some places, such as the state of Arizona and the Virgin Islands, do not observe Daylight Saving Time. Opponents of “Summer Time” have sought to abolish it. Others enjoy it so much they do not want to ever fall back. Recent legislation in Florida proposed having the Sunshine State adhere to Daylight Saving Time all year round.
While I understand the desire to extend evening daylight hours, manipulating the clock just seems unnatural to me. Time has traditionally been measured by the position of the sun in the sky. Noon is when the sun is at its highest point. The clock can tell us whatever time we set it to say, but isn’t it still noon when the sun is at that highest point regardless? Seems like we are observing pretend time when we are on Daylight Savings Time.
The Bible tells us that there is a time for everything and a season for every activity under the heavens. (Ecclesiastes 3:1.) A laundry list of what there is a time for is provided. There’s a time to be born and a time to die. A time to love and a time to hate. A time to weep and a time to laugh. Strikingly missing from that list of “a time for” is a time to mess with the time. It does not say “A time to spring forward and a time to fall back.” If God had meant man to change the time, don’t you think that such an activity would have been listed?
Clocks can be and are manipulated to show whatever time we desire them to show. Thus, they are inherently unreliable. I prefer to rely on the ultimate clock, my body, to tell me what time it is. It never fails to let me know when it is time to eat and time to sleep. Right now it is telling me that I need to end this post because I am tired and my brain needs a break. And why am I tired? Let’s just blame that pretend time that requires me to observe a time with which my body disagrees.
Isn’t it time to quit messing with time? Forget saving daylight. Let’s save ourselves the bother of attempting to adjust our internal time clocks twice a year. It’s time for a change, and I don’t mean changing the time on the clock.