Normally an audio podcast goes here, but not today

This week is my obligatory bi-annual love letter to the gods of daylight saving. There is no audio this week as this show is dedicated to those you cannot hear.

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Warning: This is the stream of consciousness text behind the podcast. It may contain incomplete sentences, incorrect grammar, and other mistakes. JSYK


It’s that time of year again. Daylight Saving Time.

In 2018 it was from March 11 until November 4th,  238 days (about 65% of the year). So for the other 127 days (about 35%) of the year we are on Standard Time. Which is now. This is Standard Time. This is normal. 

Right now (as of the day I write this), there will have been 10 hours 38 minutes of daylight. That’s going to continue to decrease until the day before the next solstice, when on Dec 20 the shortest daylight of the year will be 9 hours 46 minutes. The amount of daylight will increase until we get about 14 hours 31 minutes of daylight (around June 20). 

Anyway, what I’m here to tell you is the concept of the clock is pretty much useless on a day by day basis. People who like daylight are more depressed during the darker months. Vampires spend a lot more time out during the other months.

Vampires like Daylight Saving Time because people who get off work at 5 or 5:30pm will now be in darkness and they can be attacked. Before they were safe.

There are so many rants, reviews, factual references, and wild theories written on the web about this whole DST situation. There are petitions to end it, and I recently read some more EU countries are going to drop it. It doesn’t matter what the past said about DST. The here and now says it sucks.

But now it’s about 5:30pm and it’s dark outside. How does that help me? It doesn’t. It confuses my body. I already hate how the daylight get shorter and shorter, but this big jump messes me up.

Of course it will be brighter easier in the morning, making it hard for me to sleep, and probably make me get up earlier. 

The big question, did you get an extra hour of sleep on Sunday? I didn’t. My sleep tracker showed I slept as much as I normally do. Maybe if you wake up by an alarm you may get that hour, but I just sleep. No alarm. No extra hour.

The question is what is a day anyway? Not much of it is consistent. Sure it is the time it takes the Earth to rotate 1 full turn. But who really cares about that? Well, science does, but that is it. A day is just a measure of time. But things happen without any regard to a clock, it’s just a reference for people. 

Did you know that the “Atomic” second  (for atomic clocks) is, according to Wikipedia, “Since 1967, the official definition of a second is 9 (billion),192(million),631(thousand),770 cycles of the radiation that gets an atom of cesium-133 to vibrate between two energy states.” I know right? But technically a second, minute, hour could be something completely different. And it has been as it’s changed over … um … time. That definition is from 1967 and it was different before that and may change later as well.

But what if you didn’t know the clock time? What if it wasn’t on your phone, your desktop, your watch, your car, the microwave, the oven … man, we really have an obsession with putting a clock on everything. What if you ignored the clock. Didn’t look at the time. Just spent time doing something, focusing on the now. Not thinking about what has been or what is to come. Just now. Read a book, build with legos, exercise, meditate … do something that doesn’t require a clock. And don’t look at any clock. Do this for while. What’s a while? — it doesn’t matter — just exist outside of traditional time.

No one is saving any daylight or time. But because of our dependence on a physical clock and this ridiculous concept of time, one hour may affect us greatly or not at all. One hour. 60 minutes. 360 seconds. 33,093,474,372,000 (33 trillion, 093 billion, 474 million, 372 thousand, and 000) cycles of the radiation that gets an atom of cesium-133 to vibrate between two energy states.

That’s what you saved. Hope you’re happy.

Also, I love you. I really do. Admittedly you annoy the fork out of me sometimes and other times I may want to suffocate you with a pillow, but I don’t. Because I love you.

— The Distracted Philosopher

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