Permanent Daylight
March 27, 2017 6:47 AM   Subscribe

At least 16 states in 2017 are considering 24 bills or resolutions related to proposed changes to DST.... In fact, it’s an even split as 12 of the bills would establish permanent standard time, while the other 12 would petition for or otherwise seek to create permanent DST.
However, Indiana warns against it, or at least against being the only state in the neighborhood that does.
posted by Etrigan (115 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
 
I want permanent dst so bad! In the winter up here it gets dark before five and it is bonecrushingly depressing.
posted by showbiz_liz at 6:50 AM on March 27, 2017 [19 favorites]


From an energy perspective it's probably worth it to go permanent DST. Shifting the peaks further back into solar generation times will help abate the duck curve problem.
posted by Talez at 6:57 AM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


Business leaders who were around in the mid-2000s say staying on a single time all year was a logistical nightmare.

Boy, am I old.
posted by Capt. Renault at 6:57 AM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]


I'd be willing to compromise on a half-hour change in the clocks, but people aren't presented with this option because the discussion is framed in hours, not minutes.
posted by Brian B. at 6:59 AM on March 27, 2017 [6 favorites]


Why not just change the standard start time for work to 8am?

It's exactly the same thing. The only difference is that it makes clear to us late-risers the tyranny which early-risers are exercising over us.
posted by clawsoon at 7:00 AM on March 27, 2017 [34 favorites]


So, what happens to time zones if some states do permanent DST and some do permanent standard time?

I'm also curious if there's a clear split by latitude for which states prefer which...
posted by epanalepsis at 7:14 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


So, what happens to time zones if some states do permanent DST and some do permanent standard time?

We all become Arizona.
posted by PMdixon at 7:16 AM on March 27, 2017 [10 favorites]


I welcome this biannual reminder that clock time is a human construct.
posted by fairmettle at 7:17 AM on March 27, 2017 [22 favorites]


the tyranny which early-risers are exercising over us

One answer to this would be Daily Savings Time, which I learned about from the Car Talk guys: Every morning, set your clock back so you get an extra hour of sleep, and every afternoon move it back ahead so you can leave work an hour early.

I have a lot of trouble with calendars and clocks and so it took me an embarrassingly long time to see the flaw in this plan.
posted by miles per flower at 7:18 AM on March 27, 2017 [33 favorites]


I think that second article overstates it. I LOVED being on one time all year long when I lived in Indiana, and businesses manage to deal with other odd time zones just fine, as well as the offset shift between European and American daylight/summer time. I think the problem is that Indiana is a small state right on a timezone border so people don't REMEMBER which zone Indiana is in even now that it's just in one.

I lived like 6 miles from the Michigan border and the biggest problems with the "no change" was families who lived in Michigan (and went to school there) but worked in Indiana, or vice versa, because it would fuck up school drop off for that family. The other minor thing was extracurriculars for kids on both sides of the border, like if your music teacher served the whole metro, which straddled the border.

My FAVORITE part was that half the year we had half an hour of local news, and half the year we had an hour and a half of local news, to fill the varying gap between daytime TV and primetime TV. An hour and a half of small-town local news is AMAZING. There is literally nothing too small for a five-minute segment and no young reporter too amateurish and no school concert too unmelodious. Ducks nesting in a highway median, a week long series about ducklings and love! A park has a new gazebo, let's spend EIGHT MINUTES touring a gazebo, which is functionally turning in a circle while vamping for eight minutes! Oooh, flowers, let's talk to the guy at this random house with pretty flowers! Let's fill ten minutes with an on-site cooking segment tangentially related to some health news! It was brilliant. I was always so sad when it switched back to a standard half-hour and cruised through a standard local news menu of local government, crime, weather, and high school sports. Boo! I want ducklings!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 7:21 AM on March 27, 2017 [67 favorites]


I don't care what time we go with, just that we stop hopping back and forth and fucking up my sleep schedule. Early, late, whatever. Can we just pick one and keep it for the love of little green onions? I'll adjust. And then never have to adjust again.
posted by emjaybee at 7:24 AM on March 27, 2017 [23 favorites]


Hello, people who write software that uses local time! We've got something fun in the works for you!
posted by indubitable at 7:24 AM on March 27, 2017 [21 favorites]


@epanalepsis: Regardez-vous.
posted by XtinaS at 7:25 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


> "Early, late, whatever. Can we just pick one and keep it for the love of little green onions?"

God, yes. I don't care if they declare that noon is now midnight as long as that DOESN'T CHANGE.
posted by kyrademon at 7:26 AM on March 27, 2017 [13 favorites]


My partner is from Arizona, and his mother and sister still live there. His father is from Indiana. We are in Illinois. He (and I) basically never have any idea what time it is when we need to call them and have to look it up every single time. (Yes, I know Indiana is different now than it was. That still confuses us more.)
posted by MCMikeNamara at 7:26 AM on March 27, 2017 [5 favorites]


Do I love getting the extra hour more than I hate losing it? I don't know.

But I feel strongly that a DST thread must contain a link to Cousin Oskaar. (And somebody made a song out of it - Think About Me Dave - if I have to suffer the earworm, I'm going to spread it further, dammit.)
posted by oh yeah! at 7:30 AM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]


In an ideal federal system, states passing their own laws concerning time zones would be treated as an act on par with armed succession.
posted by groda at 7:30 AM on March 27, 2017 [8 favorites]


What kyrademon said. Praise the lord hallelujah.
posted by Melismata at 7:34 AM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


He (and I) basically never have any idea what time it is when we need to call them and have to look it up every single time.

I would pay five bucks for something that displays people's local time on their contact info in iOS when I'm trying to call them. Even if I had to set their time zone manually, it would save me so much time and effort.
posted by Etrigan at 7:45 AM on March 27, 2017 [12 favorites]


Oh, good. It's been so long since I've had anything to be angry about.

Noon is when the sun is directly above your head, and anything else is hubris.
posted by ernielundquist at 7:47 AM on March 27, 2017 [18 favorites]


federal law allows a state to exempt itself from observing DST, upon action by the state legislature to do so, but does not allow the permanent observance of DST.

I'm baffled as to why the federal law doesn't allow permanent DST.

But I'm happy that my state is one that seems to be aiming at permanent DST anyway. I love those late evenings in summer!
posted by dnash at 7:48 AM on March 27, 2017


The province of Alberta is likely moving to permanent DST this year. The government did a survey, and people overwhelmingly wanted to stop changing clocks and to stay on DST. The two NHL teams have complained about scheduling conflicts but that's about it.
posted by Brodiggitty at 7:52 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


Another Hoosier here, Daylight Savings always seemed like some exotic perplexity to me growing up. "So you set your clocks forward, but then you just set them back again? Why?"

Of course, Indiana is also the furthest possible tip of the eastern standard time zone, so that means our clocks are way off our actual noon such that the sun is up until after 9:00pm in the summer.

In conclusion, Indiana is land of contrasts.
posted by leotrotsky at 7:56 AM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]


I hate hate hate hate the time shift. It doesn't make any sense and messes everything up.
posted by Peach at 7:56 AM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


Its quite interesting to look at this map showing countries which use savings time (Northern or Southern variations), those which don't and those which used to.
It shows that
1. The majority of the world's population appears to have played about with the idea but discarded it as a dud.
2. There doesn't seem to be any sort of meaningful correlation between a country's mean latitude and its willingness to subscribe to DST.
3. So far as I can tell there are no majority Muslim countries that use DST - I am guessing that it would be a hard sell for a religious calendar driven by the lunar cycles..
posted by rongorongo at 7:59 AM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


Extra super dst: sunrise happens at noon. Morning people get too feel very mature and disciplined spending the first half of the day in the dark, night owls get more sunlight for their irresponsible late night fun, everyone wins.
posted by idiopath at 7:59 AM on March 27, 2017 [23 favorites]


Indiana is also the furthest possible tip of the eastern standard time zone

Ontonagon County says hi.
posted by Etrigan at 7:59 AM on March 27, 2017 [5 favorites]


Mr. Cardinal and I were literally just talking about how the time shift has been screwing with our sleep. I'm firmly in the Pick One camp. I DGAF which it is, but I want continuity in time over the whole year.
posted by Excommunicated Cardinal at 8:00 AM on March 27, 2017 [5 favorites]




If it wasn't for the fall time change, what would I be able to blame for my yearly seasonal depression?
posted by Strange Interlude at 8:05 AM on March 27, 2017 [6 favorites]


Extra super dst: sunrise happens at noon. Morning people get too feel very mature and disciplined spending the first half of the day in the dark, night owls get more sunlight for their irresponsible late night fun, everyone wins.

Ugh, as a morning person, this sounds like the worst, it's bad enough that I'm awake for four hours before sunrise (which happens when I'm already at work and indoors), that would be misery.

Actually. Explain this like I'm a stupid New Englander: why do states with consistently long days switch at all?
posted by epanalepsis at 8:08 AM on March 27, 2017


Of course, Indiana is also the furthest possible tip of the eastern standard time zone, so that means our clocks are way off our actual noon such that the sun is up until after 9:00pm in the summer.

This was one of the hardest adjustments moving from Portland Ore. to Portland ME. Maine is so goddamn far east in the timezone that in the middle of winter, the sun would rise an hour before any of us would get up, and then set at like 3:30 or 4:00pm. It was like living on another planet, and my body never really adjusted to it.
posted by furnace.heart at 8:09 AM on March 27, 2017 [7 favorites]


I love DST and the switch from EST to EDT, though I'd prefer if DST was a shorter period. There are so many cycles in nature that we pretend don't exist that it's just lovely to see this one cycle that we didn't just accept, we actually amplified.

That magic day when suddenly it's light out until 7... yay! Spring is here! And that day in October/November when suddenly the sun sets at like 4:30 has a certain grimness to it, but it's just great as this absolutely visceral reminder that WINTER IS COMING.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:10 AM on March 27, 2017 [11 favorites]


Hey, we could just play it like they do in China and have one time zone for the entire country. So everybody in the Pacific Time zone could get up at geographic 3:00 a.m. (6:00 a.m. Eastern) to get to work for 4:00 a.m., BUT they would also get out of work at geographical 2:00 p.m. Think of all the freakin' extra daylight you'd have then!
posted by briank at 8:11 AM on March 27, 2017 [6 favorites]


Noon is when the sun is directly above your head, and anything else is hubris.

If we strictly followed that criteria, America would have an infinite number of time zones. Or at least hundreds of them. I mean, the sun is not simultaneously directly overhead in NYC and Cleveland, and they share a time zone.

Actually we used to - the reason it was necessary to implement standard time zones in the first place was, it was fine not to have them back in the days when you couldn't travel more than a couple dozen miles in a day. But then we invented trains and it all went straight to hell, because how on earth can you make and maintain a train schedule if every single town has ever-so-slightly different time differences?
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:12 AM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]


Ontonagon County says hi.

Right, but like 6 people live in that part of the UP.
posted by leotrotsky at 8:14 AM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]


But then we invented trains and it all went straight to hell, because how on earth can you make and maintain a trainschedule if every single town has ever-so-slightly different time differences?

But now we have computers, so maybe we can let them do the math?

(I suppose it's still impractical. [sigh])
posted by Shmuel510 at 8:15 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


Oh, good. It's been so long since I've had anything to be angry about.

Noon is when the sun is directly above your head, and anything else is hubris.


Unless you live between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, I've got some bad news for you.
posted by leotrotsky at 8:16 AM on March 27, 2017 [14 favorites]


I never thought I would miss DST until I moved way up north here. It is positively depressing to wake up in total darkness for a giant chunk of the year, and most of the rest of Europe seems to agree. In fact, the one thing this country, Belarus and Russia have in common (or had, anyway, I don't know if the law has since changed) is a lack of DST. Unfortunately, it will never be a reality here, because the party that proposed it (the ironically named Bright Future) became an absolute laughing stock for even suggesting it, and they've been very shy about putting the proposal forward again since.
posted by Aya Hirano on the Astral Plane at 8:17 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


I love DST and the switch from EST to EDT, though I'd prefer if DST was a shorter period. There are so many cycles in nature that we pretend don't exist that it's just lovely to see this one cycle that we didn't just accept, we actually amplified.

That magic day when suddenly it's light out until 7... yay! Spring is here! And that day in October/November when suddenly the sun sets at like 4:30 has a certain grimness to it, but it's just great as this absolutely visceral reminder that WINTER IS COMING.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 11:10 AM on March 27 [+] [!]


I'm trying to phrase this nicely...what sort of...edibles...are you consuming, and can I have some? Because the time change makes me STABBY WITH RAGE every single time and it just gets worse as I get older, and the length of time it takes me to adjust gets longer as I get older, and dammit, I grew up in Indiana when we didn't change the time and WE WERE FINE and the crops DIDN'T BURN and the cows didn't get confused and somehow we all got up and went to school and work and IT WAS GOOD.

Can we at least, AT THE VERY LEAST, if we're not going to get rid of the abomination that is the time change, can we please move it to a Friday/Saturday thing? Then we'd have the whole weekend to start to adjust and maybe my first work week after the time change wouldn't be such a FUCKING NIGHTMARE.

i really really hate the time change
posted by cooker girl at 8:22 AM on March 27, 2017 [20 favorites]


But then we invented trains ...
Speaking of which there's a clock on the Corn Exchange at Bristol showing London Time and Bristol Time. The Bristol indicator was removed in the 1850's but restored in 1989.
posted by glasseyes at 8:22 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


I have a friend who well into his 30s didn't seem to ever have a job. One summer we were camping and rafting. While on the river, I asked him what time it was as I left my watch in my sleeping bag. He summed up his philosophy of life and time in one fell swoop when he replied, "Man if you are worried about what time it is, you are doing it wrong." Not sure how that relates to time zone discussion, but I think it does.
posted by AugustWest at 8:38 AM on March 27, 2017 [11 favorites]


But now we have computers, so maybe we can let them do the math?

(I suppose it's still impractical. [sigh])


I mean, you'd either have TV shows starting at slightly staggered times in each town over or else it would be "ok, so I work 20 miles away from work and work starts at 9am, so if I leave at... um... well if it takes me half an hour to get there, I have to leave at... um... fuck, and "[Show] premiers at 7: 49 in [Town], and 7:50 in [Adjacent Town], and 7:51 in [Town-Next-To-That]," and I mean, why? Just for the principle of the thing?
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:38 AM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]


I'm baffled as to why the federal law doesn't allow permanent DST.

This actually makes sense, I think. Let's say that Michigan, which is currently at the western edge of its time zone, decides to have permanent Eastern Standard time. Historically, this makes sense - Michigan was actually fairly late to adopt DST. And let's say that Alabama, which is at the eastern edge of its time zone, decides to have permanent Central Daylight time (because, I don't know, they think it's really silly that you can have a flight that leaves Atlanta at 9:00 AM and gets to Birmingham at 8:55 AM). Now it is always the same time in Michigan and Alabama, but they're calling it by different names.
posted by madcaptenor at 8:39 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


1. Abolish the DST shift.
2. Abolish time zones.
3. Unix timestamps everywhere.
posted by save alive nothing that breatheth at 8:40 AM on March 27, 2017 [13 favorites]


This was one of the hardest adjustments moving from Portland Ore. to Portland ME. Maine is so goddamn far east in the timezone that in the middle of winter, the sun would rise an hour before any of us would get up, and then set at like 3:30 or 4:00pm.

Maine and Massachusetts really, really ought to be on Atlantic Time. The only reason they're not is the perceived need to sync up with NYC. There are occasionally serious proposals to switch to AT or permanent DST (which work out to about the same thing).

IMO, the fact that so much business communication happens via e-mail these days (or has been replaced by automated systems) means that syncing up local time is less important than it was when phones and fax machines were how things got done. Which should free us up for:

Noon is when the sun is directly above your head, and anything else is hubris.

Or my preferred alternative, which is that everybody just uses UTC for everything and then adjusts their business and school schedules according to local daylight. I don't mind going to work at 0500 if 0500 is after sunrise.
posted by tobascodagama at 8:40 AM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


Driving from CA to NM, you can change time zones six times!

It's Daylight Savings Time in the rest of the US, but you cross into AZ from CA you go back to standard time. But then you enter the Navajo reservation, which observes DST and you reset your clock. Now you enter the Hopi reservation which does not observe it, but the Hopi reservation is inside the Navajo reservation so as soon as you leave Hopi territory, you're off DST time and back on standard. You then head south and leave the Navaho rez which puts you back on standard in AZ, and you switch to DST once more as you enter New Mexico.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 8:43 AM on March 27, 2017 [11 favorites]


OK, some good points.

I am actually fine with the current timezone compromises, just because it's necessary for coordination. In my heart of hearts, though, I'm on sundial time, and if you ask me what time it is and I tell you what it says on a regular clock, I know I'm lying.

For the most part, we don't need to all have the same danged schedules anyway. If you are a postal worker and you really really need to go look at insects after work, you big entitled baby, maybe coordinate that with your employer. Ask for a modified schedule, or even for your company to adopt different hours during different times of the year. If you have a business that needs to have regular operating hours, you can do pretty much the same thing without forcing EVERYONE ELSE in your vicinity to change their external AND internal clocks to fall in line with your preferences. It's ridiculous.

For a lot of jobs, there is no danged reason at all that people need to do them during regular "working hours" anyway, and yet, I've been stuck in many a horrific rush hour, on too little sleep, trying to get to my office on time to work on projects that require little to no input from anyone else on any given day. I could just as easily do them at midnight or 3AM, and schedule meetings individually. But no! No! I have to make sure I'm there at the same time that they open the shoe stores and tax preparation shops, lest I seem slatternly or something. (It is incredibly strange the connotations we associate with early vs. late risers, but they are the only reason I can think of that anyone would consider permanent DST .)
posted by ernielundquist at 8:44 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]



1. Abolish the DST shift.
2. Abolish time zones.
3. Unix timestamps everywhere.

4. Somehow profit off Y2038.
posted by PMdixon at 8:45 AM on March 27, 2017 [5 favorites]


I am very into the idea (which I guess got a few minutes of traction in 2013, based on googling) of having two US time zones.

Like tobascodagama says, various schedules could be shifted to local daylight, although on the other hand it's not like making any of these proposed changes is going to stop actual sun-daylight length from changing. It'll still suck sometimes. It'll still be light/dark sometimes when you want it to be dark/light. Children will refuse to go to bed/get up. But you won't have to make the goddamn switch twice a year and be jetlagged and angry for what used to be a week but now that I'm in my mid-40s is more like two or three. I'd rather be mildly disoriented by the especially long/short days - which I already am anyway - than switched abruptly.
posted by Lyn Never at 8:48 AM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


But now we have computers, so maybe we can let them do the math?

Ha ha ha ha ha ha (drops dead from exhaustion)! Yeah, because that's been working out so well with even the current simpler timezones.
posted by saulgoodman at 8:54 AM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


I'm getting ready to retire. At that point I hope that my smallest unit of time will be a season.
posted by jeporter99 at 8:54 AM on March 27, 2017 [7 favorites]


Eyebrows McGee, South Bend area I am assuming? I went to high school across the border in MI and definitely made good use of "Indiana Time" at need when the liquor stores in MI were closing.

All I want is for the clock in my car to set itself based on geolocation. Car has an in-built GPS, so it should be easy, right? Wrong. If I select "automatcally set time" it thinks I live in Australia or something instead of Minnesota. WTF.
posted by caution live frogs at 8:59 AM on March 27, 2017 [5 favorites]


We just did DST in Europe. I spent the last couple weeks randomly being confused by the Metafilter timestamp, because it's set by Oregon's time, so it doesn't match for the few weeks a year that the US is in daylight time but Europe is still doing standard.

For extra fun, I live in Copenhagen, but Mr. Nat is in Arizona; and I have work skype meetings with people in the US as well as in Europe.

I've got it easier than some friends though, I know a few doing Copenhagen-Australia relationships. 2hrs worth of shift has got to be extra annoying.
posted by nat at 9:00 AM on March 27, 2017


He (and I) basically never have any idea what time it is when we need to call them and have to look it up every single time.

You know there are apps for that, right? The ones I have used show me all the times that my scattered friends and relatives live in on one screen.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 9:00 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


He summed up his philosophy of life and time in one fell swoop when he replied, "Man if you are worried about what time it is, you are doing it wrong." Not sure how that relates to time zone discussion, but I think it does.

Somewhere in my history travels, I remember reading that a big problem between European settlers and Native Americans was that they each had completely different concepts of [land and] time. The Europeans had clocks to go by; the Native Americans would do things when it made sense and were in no rush. When they took two days to arrive at a certain location to sign a treaty (can't remember which one), the Europeans decided that they were irresponsible and lazy. Ouch. This guy talks about being on "Navajo time", which means that time is circular, that "everything starts late and goes long," because "If an event is passed or missed, then there is not as much reason for concern. The understanding is that the event will usually come back around again." A few years ago I went to Plimoth Plantation, and they announced on the schedule that there would be Wampanoag dancing at 3 p.m. I went there at 3, and the dancing hadn't started yet. Around 3:20, I went up to a Native staff member and asked, "isn't there supposed to be dancing at 3?" And she replied, "yeah, I suppose we'll start soon."

Works for me.
posted by Melismata at 9:01 AM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


But now we have computers, so maybe we can let them do the math?

If clock time were entirely run by networked computers, how would we know whether the government wasn't secretly lengthening our work hours and shortening our sleep hours?
posted by fairmettle at 9:02 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


  Ontonagon County says hi.

pfft: Atikokan, Ontario — 91° 37′ W, and year-round EST.
posted by scruss at 9:03 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


I was once writing bash shell scripts, and discovered that on some of the machines I was running my scripts on,

date -d"<YYYY-MM-DD> +1 day +%Y-%m-%d"

actually returned the day before what I had specified, rather than the day after. So I changed it to

date -d"<YYYY-MM-DD> +24 hours +%Y-%m-%d"

It works most of the time, but doesn't actually work on the day that we gain an extra hour, since that day is 24 hours long, and the date command will happily tell you the same day (at 11pm).

I always looked forward (ha!) to daylight savings time, because it meant another opportunity to test a whether a years' worth of code dealt properly with 23-hour days. Or 25-hour days.

I hate daylight savings time.
posted by grae at 9:05 AM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]


THERE SHOULD BE A LAW TO MAKE RELATIVISTIC CORRECTIONS WHEN YOU FLY SOMEWHERE INSTEAD OF DRIVE
posted by indubitable at 9:12 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


There is nothing that Hoosiers love as much as arguing about DST.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:15 AM on March 27, 2017 [5 favorites]


There's only so much light during the day. If you want to see some, get out of bed earlier.
posted by rebent at 9:15 AM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


STATES' RIGHTS RUN AMOK!
posted by The Underpants Monster at 9:20 AM on March 27, 2017


There is nothing that Hoosiers love as much as arguing about DST.

Counterpoint: IU vs Purdue, Weather, Jim Irsay, Euchre, IHSAA basketball classes

Past topics: Colts vs Manning-led Broncos, CART vs IRL, Bobby Knight
posted by leotrotsky at 9:47 AM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


1. Abolish the DST shift.
2. Abolish time zones.
3. Unix timestamps everywhere.


Or you could just use GMT.
posted by leotrotsky at 9:54 AM on March 27, 2017


I'm still on Swatch Time.
posted by bongo_x at 9:57 AM on March 27, 2017 [8 favorites]


If we strictly followed that criteria, America would have an infinite number of time zones. Or at least hundreds of them. I mean, the sun is not simultaneously directly overhead in NYC and Cleveland, and they share a time zone.


add to that that local solar noon changes (almost) every day for every point on earth.
posted by Dr. Twist at 10:00 AM on March 27, 2017


The arguments that going to one permanent time will cause confusion and disaster are pretty ridiculous. People are in different time zones now and we deal with it. It's a different time if I drive to Birmingham or Nashville from Atlanta (I think). If either or all of those changed I'm sure I'd be able to figure it out. What state is in what time zone is not something most people have memorized like the alphabet.

I don't remember ever hearing anyone in Arizona having a problem with it.
posted by bongo_x at 10:03 AM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


I loathe the time change with all my might, but I can only imagine all the Y2K-level-doom think pieces and clickbait and the OMGWTF that would arise from a nationwide abolition of it.
posted by blucevalo at 10:15 AM on March 27, 2017


I'd be fine with just using GMT across the board. It might even make corporations less stick-in-the-muddy about staggered shifts once the 8-5 (your business is still 9-5? lucky you!) label is gone. Who me? I'm not working a late staggered shift, I'm just synced with the California office. I don't leave early, I'm just synced with the Newfoundland office.
posted by Karmakaze at 10:31 AM on March 27, 2017 [5 favorites]


f clock time were entirely run by networked computers, how would we know whether the government wasn't secretly lengthening our work hours and shortening our sleep hours?

I read that and instantly I saw Sally Field standing on a table holding up a sign saying "UNION"

I want Lumino Standard Elastic Time. In this system there is always 14 hours of daylight 6:30 AM to 8:30 PM, the actual length of hours changes to accommodate. The only downside is you work more in the summer but in the winter you get to sleep alot.
posted by Pembquist at 10:34 AM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


Indiana? Let me tell you about Indiana.

If you've ever had to write software that deals with timezones, Indiana is one of those cases that will come up. See, some countries are easy to deal with. They have one time zone across the entire country and they either don't bother with Daylight Saving Time, or at least they do it consistently across the country. But no, not here in America. Not only are we big enough to encompass multiple timezones, not only do we have Congress changing the DST transition date whenever it damn well pleases, but along comes Indiana, where individual counties can't make up their damn minds about what timezone they want to be in. So they're all in the tz database separately, and of course different counties changed their minds -- more than once in some cases -- at different points, so you have to keep track of that too, in case you ever had a customer in, uh, Pulaski County, who did something where you need to know what time it happened.

So I wouldn't take Indiana's advice about anything to do with time.
posted by hyperbolic at 10:45 AM on March 27, 2017 [6 favorites]


Twice a year I have to change the ever-decreasing number of clocks (this year it was one) that don't change automatically, which is such a trivial annoyance that I barely notice it. My sleep schedule takes no more than a day or two to adjust.
But the thing that marks those days more than anything else is the barrage of tweets and Facebook posts from friends and family decrying the very idea of making us all go through the living hell of DST adjustment again.

I'm okay with a single year-round time standard but only if it's continual DST and everyone in the US and Canada does it together. My company has multiple offices and adjusting to varying differentials would be a pain.
posted by rocket88 at 10:56 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


I really can't emphasize how disruptive it is to some of us. It's like I've taken a flight from the Eastern US to somewhere in Europe, slept zero hours, gotten off the plane, and then come right back again. Jet lag times like a billion.

I try all the little hacks every year (start going to bed a little earlier for x amount of days before the change, drink lots of water, no naps, WHATEVER) and none of it works. I'm not a reliable sleeper at the best of times; throw in the stupid time change and all hell breaks loose. It takes me at least two weeks to mostly adjust, sometimes a month to fully adjust.

I swear I don't complain like this about anything else (aside from maybe the current administration in the White House). The time change is terrible for me and I'm convinced the lack of sleep and brain fog is making me feel my age faster than I should be.
posted by cooker girl at 11:05 AM on March 27, 2017 [9 favorites]


Screelw DST. (As someone who maintains DST configuration for a multinational.)
posted by psolo at 11:40 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


I never thought I would miss DST until I moved way up north here. It is positively depressing to wake up in total darkness for a giant chunk of the year, and most of the rest of Europe seems to agree.

I'm not sure how daylight savings time would fix this. Daylight savings occurs in the summer, not the winter, and I assume it's in the winter when you wake up in darkness. Daylight savings means that instead of the sun rising at 4AM and setting at 8PM in the summer, it rises at 5AM and sets and 9PM.

The winter is still going to suck.
posted by It's Never Lurgi at 11:41 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


Since I have a hard time falling asleep before 4-6AM, DST is essential for me to ever see daylight​ at all. Sadly, this is something that has only gotten worse as I've grown older. My other option is to go to sleep at 10PM, but then I'm woken easily and never get more than two or three hours of sleep a night. After a few weeks of dealing with that crankiness, I give up and go back to my DSPD life.

Point being that I will fight you like a Trumpster fire fights immigrants if you take away DST because it is essential to my well being. I can deal with only having a few hours of daylight as long as I know that I'll be getting 6 hours come summer. Take that away and I've got nothing to lose.
posted by wierdo at 11:43 AM on March 27, 2017


I freaking love DST. It's light until almost 10 p.m. here in June, and the birds don't start chirping until 4 in the morning. If we got rid of DST, those feathery little fuckers would wake us up at 3 a.m. (Birbs, you know I love you, but Jesus Herman Christ in a chicken basket.)
posted by Orange Dinosaur Slide at 11:52 AM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


Hello, people who write software that uses local time!

Speaking as software QA, and considering how our programmers can't even remember to convert between UTC and local time despite the countless bugs I've logged due to that inability, would it be alright if I just jumped into a wood chipper instead?
posted by Quindar Beep at 11:53 AM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


I would like the time to stay one way, I do not care which. The change is always disorienting and unpleasant.
posted by mermayd at 11:56 AM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


Yeah, I'm not buying the whole "OMG it would be too difficult to write the software because remember Y2K and all that." We're required to frickin' throw out our computers and TVs every two years to get new ones. We'll get it.
posted by Melismata at 11:57 AM on March 27, 2017


Didn't Indiana elected Mike Pence? I presume their idea of "current time" is "1954".
posted by Quindar Beep at 11:57 AM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


This is one of my favorite things to complain about because it seems so pointless and it makes me so miserable.

I'm a natural night owl, and I've worked very, very, very hard to get myself to some semblance of a "normal" schedule, that will allow me to teach a 10am class without spending the rest of the day feeling like I'm dying. In the past 6 months, I've actually managed to get to bed by midnight like 50% of the time, which is a huge unbelievable victory, as stupid as that might sound.

And then along comes the time change to screw that up. The worst part is I usually go down to visit friends in a different time zone the day after the time change, which just screws everything up even more. Getting up at 5 am always sucks, but getting up at 5 am when it feels like 4 am is just the worst. I'm still struggling to get used to the time change.

So the point of this whole rant, other than just because I wanted to get this off my chest, is that I'm 100% in favor of just picking one time and sticking with it. I do have a slight preference for keeping DST, though, just because it would be so nice to not have it be dark at 4 pm in the winter. Winter in New England is already bad enough as it is.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:23 PM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


If this were to happen, the only way I'd want to see it done is permanent DST. I have a lot of outdoor activities I like to do, and it's already hard to have enough time to do them during the window of daylight after work. If we went to permanent standard time, the period of the year in which I'd have time to do fun stuff outdoors after work would shrink drastically....
posted by primethyme at 12:28 PM on March 27, 2017


I suspect part of the reason we keep time zones is that listing business hours for companies that operate nationwide would be hell if we didn't.

YOUR BANK
Business hours: 8A-4P ME through MI and points south, 9A-5P from IL through OK, 10A-6P CO through AZ, and etc....

Alternatively, we'd have some local relativistic time using an arbitrarily defined start of day so hours could be listed as time1+offset through time2+offset but at that point why not just use the time zones again?
posted by caution live frogs at 12:30 PM on March 27, 2017


"I'd be fine with just using GMT across the board. It might even make corporations less stick-in-the-muddy about staggered shifts once the 8-5 (your business is still 9-5? lucky you!) label is gone. Who me? I'm not working a late staggered shift, I'm just synced with the California office. I don't leave early, I'm just synced with the Newfoundland office."

This is my dream. I don't care what time you call it. Just tell me at what hour to arrive at work. Boss says I should arrive at work at 1300 GMT. Great. I talk to my friend up in NYC and he's like, "Yeah, most of us get here at 1200 GMT." Great. Makes sense to me. My friends on the west coast would know that my workplace closes at 2200 GMT and theirs usually closes at 2400.

Your friend in China says "Hey can you call me around 0300 GMT?" and you know hey, I usually go to bed around 0400 or 0430, so sure, that's a fine time for me to call.

There's no math involved. There's no counting time zones. Within a generation kids would be like, "Wait, you used to call the getting-to-work time "eight AM" regardless of where you were on the globe? That's ridiculous! How did you ever keep track?"

If your workplace is really concerned with daylight and whatnot they can allow you to start work an hour earlier or later or whatever. Just don't change the damn clocks any more at all ever. Please.

[is there somewhere I can throw a few bucks to support a movement to a single global time?]
posted by komara at 12:37 PM on March 27, 2017 [5 favorites]


Actually. Explain this like I'm a stupid New Englander: why do states with consistently long days switch at all?

I'm a current New Englander, but I grew up in one of those states with consistently long days, so I can take a stab at this:

Growing up in Florida, we were on EST, but also quite close to the part of the state that was on central time. The advantage of the October (or whenever it is) time change is that it means sunrise is earlier. If we kept DST year round, then in December/January, it would be dark until after 8 am for some of that time.

But again, as a current New Englander, I'm all for keeping DST year round. I didn't grow up here, but I have to imagine it really sucks for kids who do sports or whatever since it gets dark so early in the winter.
posted by litera scripta manet at 12:37 PM on March 27, 2017


pfft: Atikokan, Ontario — 91° 37′ W, and year-round EST.

I grew up east of Atikokan (tho my town did DST, unlike Atikokan).

Lemme tell you, growing up in the far western reaches of a ludicrously wide timezone is amazing. On the summer solstice, we'd have sunlight until 10PM, then various shades of twilight until midnight. And the winter solstice wasn't too bad either, the sun sets around 5:10.

My now-home, Seattle, is brutal during the winter. With its solstice sunset at 4:20ish and the soggy weather, Seattle is like a Harrison Bergeron scheme designed to drag Amazon back to earth.
posted by Sauce Trough at 1:02 PM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


As a Wisconsinite who gets up around 6:30-7 am, I love the time changes! Fewer days waking up in the dark, which improves my mood considerably. Even though it gets dark earlier, people are usually inside anyway because it's fucking cold out.

Last year I surveyed my internet friends and those who supported year round DST tended to be late risers in warm states. If you weren't so lazy, you'd have more daylight. QED.
posted by AFABulous at 1:05 PM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


Last year I surveyed my internet friends and those who supported year round DST tended to be late risers in warm states. If you weren't so lazy, you'd have more daylight. QED.

Can we please not do this? This is probably meant to be a light hearted jab, but for those of us who have a circadian rhythm that is stubbornly set on being a night owl, it's really not funny. I've heard every variation on "You're lazy/immature/stop acting like a teenager/if only you tried harder," not to mention how much time and energy I've spent trying to force myself into what is considered a socially acceptable sleep schedule. And I know I'm not alone in this, so I'd really appreciate it if we could avoid this kind of thing.
posted by litera scripta manet at 1:40 PM on March 27, 2017 [14 favorites]


Former Arizona resident here. Absolutely LOVED not having to screw with time all the time!!! Just leave the clock alone people, for f***s sake!
posted by WalkerWestridge at 1:52 PM on March 27, 2017 [2 favorites]


Also, if you feel JUST PLAIN PEACHY AWESOME when the time changes, maybe your biology is just better inclined to early rising and/or regular sleep schedules? Is there any reason whatsoever to think that the fucking around with the clocks twice a year has anything to do with your chipperness?
posted by tobascodagama at 1:55 PM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


Like, I'm pretty sure you'd be annoyingly cheerful if we just left the goddamned clocks where they were, is what I'm saying, so can we just do that and end the madness?
posted by tobascodagama at 1:56 PM on March 27, 2017 [4 favorites]


lsm, I am with you on this! I actually once had a job where they offered flex time, you could start anytime between 7am and 9am and finish nine hours later. When this policy rolled out, all my coworkers decided to come in between 5am and 7am (yes, earlier than the policy allowed!) and leave nine hours after that. Somehow management allowed this. And when I chose to come in at 8am they all snarked at me for being such a lazybones.

I wonder how long the management neglect would have allowed their crazy earlybird shenanigans, if I wasn't there to answer the phone until 5? Hmmm? But somehow *I* was the immature teenager? Jerks.

If you are a morning person, lucky you. But enough with the moral superiority.
posted by elizilla at 1:57 PM on March 27, 2017 [13 favorites]


When this policy rolled out, all my coworkers decided to come in between 5am and 7am (yes, earlier than the policy allowed!) and leave nine hours after that. Somehow management allowed this. And when I chose to come in at 8am they all snarked at me for being such a lazybones.

I worked in an office like this once. Turns out I was the only one there who didn't have children to put on the school bus at 6 o'clock AM.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 2:11 PM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


The same people who complain about an hour time change twice a year and its deleterious effects on their delicate sleep will fly between New York and Chicago (an hour's time difference) without nary a comment as to how their sleep is (barely) affected by the change.

And if DST were to be abolished, I somehow think those naysayers would be the first ones regretting the 8pm sunset at the end of June.

Permanent DST is preferable in my eyes, and being a night-owl, I'd actually love to go to permanent DOUBLE DST (New York to UTC-3 permanently). Sunsets at 10pm would make for an amazing summer.
posted by jcronen at 2:37 PM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]


Permanent DST is preferable in my eyes, and being a night-owl, I'd actually love to go to permanent DOUBLE DST (New York to UTC-3 permanently). Sunsets at 10pm would make for an amazing summer.

That means it would be light out until almost 6 pm on even the shortest days of the winter in Boston. Yes please! As long as it's permanent.

Also, even though you might think getting darker earlier would make it easier to get to sleep at a "reasonable" hour, it actually makes it way harder for me. Maintaining a socially acceptable sleep schedule is never easy, but the easiest time to attempt it is in the summer. Sure, the warmth helps, but so does being light until 8 or 9 pm. There's something about it getting dark at 4 pm that just messes with my circadian rhythm even more. I think it's probably that my natural internal clock is already kind of messed up, so when it gets dark so early, there's really no way the tell the difference between 5 pm and 2 am, which makes me more inclined to go full on night owl (aka staying awake until sunrise, and then sleeping in until 2 pm). I have come up with some techniques to mitigate it (which I've described on more than one occasion over on askmefi if anyone's interested), but it's definitely not easy.

To be fair, I don't love having it be dark when I wake up, but honestly, waking up before noon is already so painful, it doesn't make that big of a difference. Also, yay sunrise alarm clocks.
posted by litera scripta manet at 3:54 PM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


As long as it's permanent DST, sign me up. I hate going back to standard time in the winter.
posted by Aleyn at 4:24 PM on March 27, 2017


If you weren't so lazy, you'd have more daylight.

Captain Obvious wishes to point out that DST does not in any way alter the amount of daylight in a day. If you don't have sufficient leverage with your corporate overlords to alter your work schedule to your liking, forcing everyone to jump through hoops is hardly an equitable approach.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:51 PM on March 27, 2017 [6 favorites]


When we spring forward here, the after-hours bar across the street thinks it's okay to keep spewing out loud drunken people until the sun comes up at 0730, because it's still dark outside. I leave for work in the middle of a pack of howling drunken brawling banshees because the gummit decided to back it up again. March is not a pretty month.

I will of course exact my revenge in a couple months when it starts getting light at 0545.
posted by halfbuckaroo at 5:01 PM on March 27, 2017 [1 favorite]


The same people who complain about an hour time change twice a year and its deleterious effects on their delicate sleep will fly between New York and Chicago (an hour's time difference) without nary a comment as to how their sleep is (barely) affected by the change.

And if DST were to be abolished, I somehow think those naysayers would be the first ones regretting the 8pm sunset at the end of June.


When I'm traveling from Ohio to Chicago, I don't have to worry about getting up at 6 (which now feels like 5), working all day, then trying to go to bed at 10 (which actually feels like 9), and feeling like shit for days because of that schedule. Because I'm on vacation. If I had to travel across time zones for work I would be fucked.

And, actually, I loathe it being light out past 7 pm or so. When it doesn't get dark til 9 or 10, my circadian rhythm gets all screwed to hell; I get a second wind at like 9 because it's still light outside! But I can't stay up til midnight because I have a job that requires me to get up early.

So, sorry to burst your bubble, anecdata and all that.

Also, please don't poke fun at people's "delicate sleep." I considered suicide more than once in my past because I am a terrible sleeper and I was literally losing my mind due to sleep deprivation.
posted by cooker girl at 5:36 PM on March 27, 2017 [9 favorites]


But now we have computers, so maybe we can let them do the math?

Yet again this year I ended up having to debug an issue that turned out to be a bad assumption regarding DST behavior. Software is full of DST-related bugs/issues (and annoying UI issues like "how do I distinguish which 1:30am the user means?").

Computers just introduce a different set of issues (admittedly ones that are mostly only relevant to the actual engineers, although if they mess up it still affects everyone).
posted by thefoxgod at 7:26 PM on March 27, 2017


Yeah, I'm not buying the whole "OMG it would be too difficult to write the software because remember Y2K and all that."

A good example of why that is nonsense (the original statement, not yours) is that Congress already changed the DST schedule in 2007 (2005 law, took effect in 2007) and we all had to update software for that (and yes, that included more bugs / missed places). And software already has to handle Arizona, etc.

So on the one hand, yeah there would be some temporary issues, but (a) we've dealt with this before, and (b) every year there are _new bugs_ introduced due to DST (which as grae said means you don't actually _find_ these bugs until the next DST switch).

And either way most people would still have to implement DST for all the other countries that use it (and they all have their own schedules anyway!).

If by some miracle the time change was abolished from the Earth, the end result would be fewer issues in programs not more (one more one time effort to change + some time after to deal with bugs, but no new DST bugs after that).
posted by thefoxgod at 7:35 PM on March 27, 2017


If you weren't so lazy, you'd have more daylight.

If I weren't so lazy a lot of things would be different.
posted by bongo_x at 8:05 PM on March 27, 2017 [3 favorites]


Captain Obvious wishes to point out that DST does not in any way alter the amount of daylight in a day. If you don't have sufficient leverage with your corporate overlords to alter your work schedule to your liking, forcing everyone to jump through hoops is hardly an equitable approach.

Obviously it doesn't alter the amount of daylight, it alters the amount of useful daylight (e.g. when most people are not sleeping). Most people go to work or school between 7 and 9 am. Therefore most people are waking up somewhere between 6 and 8 am. Why is it that night owls think the majority should get up and get ready in the dark? Who's forcing who?
posted by AFABulous at 8:18 PM on March 27, 2017


Who's forcing who?

Like I said, your corporate overlords. The amount of "useful daylight" is completely independent of what clocks say. It used to be that DST- lovers claimed that it benefited farmers, which was a ridiculous notion. The things that regulate farmers' schedules, like crops and livestock, are wholly ignorant of what time it is, and routinely ignore DST's hoops. You could, too, if you had the power.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:23 AM on March 28, 2017 [4 favorites]


But I don't want to. I like getting up when the sun is up. I like going to bed when it's dark. We can call that midnight or 6 am or 3 pm or gazeebelgork if we wanted to. I'm not some freak of nature - humans are diurnal. People's circadian rhythms get messed the fuck up if it's light when they go to sleep and dark when they wake up. People who aren't diurnal have sleep disorders.
posted by AFABulous at 7:51 AM on March 28, 2017 [1 favorite]


The things that regulate farmers' schedules, like crops and livestock, are wholly ignorant of what time it is

Yeah, cows don't know what a clock is, but they're not ignorant of when they sun comes up. Humans use clocks. In order for humans to maintain a somewhat steady clock schedule, when clocks are set back in the fall, the same numbered time is closer to when the sun comes up. Not perfect, but closer. We could do this incrementally so everyone's day just starts at sunrise, but how the fuck do you plan anything? You'd constantly be calculating, "okay, my doctor's appointment is 3 hours after sunrise" and you'd be depending on the doctor to also be calculating that correctly, because "3 hours after sunrise" would change every day. It's a hell of a lot easier to call it 10 am and be done with it.
posted by AFABulous at 7:58 AM on March 28, 2017


If you want to get up with the sun, open your blinds, don't mess with the fucking clocks so you can play pretend.
posted by tobascodagama at 9:02 AM on March 28, 2017 [3 favorites]


OK, you're just being willfully stubborn and/or ignorant at this point.
posted by AFABulous at 9:18 AM on March 28, 2017


Says the guy who thinks fucking with clocks twice a year does anything constructive.

Do what you like, just don't force the rest of us to play along.
posted by tobascodagama at 9:32 AM on March 28, 2017


[Let's keep it cool in here, please.]
posted by LobsterMitten (staff) at 9:58 AM on March 28, 2017 [1 favorite]


... Does DST need to go on the List alongside "circumcising Israeli cats"?
posted by PMdixon at 3:01 PM on March 28, 2017 [2 favorites]


Why? I thought the last MeFi thread about circumcising Israeli cats went swimmingly.

(countdown until someone has a fit about me making my just-circumcised cat go swimming)
posted by caution live frogs at 11:40 AM on March 30, 2017 [2 favorites]


I did a bit of reading and I thought it was interesting that northern climes are more likely to use DST than more equatorial ones. Daylight savings time doesn't make much sense if the length of the day doesn't change throughout the year, so I get that part, but Edinburgh gets about 18 hours of sunlight during the middle of summer. What's the point of DST here? It doesn't matter if you shift the clocks or not - you have plenty of sunshine whenever you happen to be up.
posted by It's Never Lurgi at 2:39 PM on March 31, 2017


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