Daylight Savings Time - It really saves

You may have heard some of these, but here's a couple

"Only the government would believe that you could cut a foot off the top of a blanket, sew it to the bottom, and have a longer blanket."

or my favorite:

"Daylight saving time occurs because Chuck Norris hits snooze on his alarm clock."

There are those who think daylight savings time is just a trick and we're the victims.  Well, they're only partially correct. The truth is, DST is there to correct the trick.  What is the trick that it corrects?  The clock.  Let me explain....

Before clocks became available to the average man, people kept time by the sun.  The day started when the sun came up, and ended when the sun went down.  Indeed, those of us familiar with the Bible read how the Hebrews reckoned time by the number of hours since sunrise.  The 9th hour, for instance, was sometime around 3:00 p.m. - or 9 hours after sunrise.  So, the workday began, depending on your particular activity, when the sun came up, and by the time the sun went down you were through with your daily work and it was time to get ready for bed.

Then came clocks.  Now we have a mechanical means of keeping up with time.  That was the first major change, and things would never be the same.  At the time, Great Britian was the world power, and since they'd basically invaded every country on earth, they took it on themselves to decide what the time standards were.  Even today, the world's times are all keyed to the time in London.  Listen to the U.S. Government's time station, WWV, and you'll hear it called "Universal Time".  It's also known as Greenwich Mean Time, all based on the time standard in Greenwich England. 

However, even back then people didn't necessary become slaves to the mechanical timekeeper, and things still were pretty much sunrise to sunset.  Then came Edison, and all of a sudden the lack of light was no longer a limiting factor.  But the real gamechanger came shortly after that.  It was called Henry Ford.  Now, at the time, the change to a 40 hour workweek advanced by Ford Motor Company was a great idea, because the workweek had been somewhere around 48 hours per week, and Ford believed that a somewhat shorter workweek was better for worker productivity.  So 8 to 5 - punching the clock, and now we're slaves.

The problem is that the sun still comes up and the sun still sets on different schedules depending on the time of year.  To correct this difference between "sun" time and "clock" time, a New Zealander named George Hudson proposed moving the timezone to give people like hiim more daylight to pursue interests outside of their work schedule.  It took a world war and the wish to increase productivity by lengthening the workday by an extra hour to make it what it is now.

Now, remember, by this time we are slaves to a mechanical clock rather than using the "natural" timepiece - the sun.  The use of daylight savings time was an attempt to correct that situation.  So, it turns out that, in reality, it's that thing you wear on your wrist (or, if you're like me, those digits on your smartphone) that is fake, not the attempt to correct things.

OK, so what?  Well, here's the thing. In the days when we were an agrarian society, the clock was not as limiting because most work was done outside and the sun still dictated when the work had to finish.  But once we became an industrial society, the work moved inside and the clock took over.  But, the sun still goes down on its own schedule.  Now, I hate seeing it dark at 5:00 p.m.  I'm sitting here right now at 7:00 p.m. and it looks like midnight outside.  My eyes tell me it's time to go to bed, but if I do that, I'll toss and turn all night long.  The clock doesn't track with the sun, and that really messes with your body.

So here's my proposal:  Just rip the bandage off and move the timezone permanently.  Stop calling it daylight savings time and just stick with it.  Why this long diatribe?  I had nothing else to do and it's dark outside......

Let's write a book

You and I are going to write a book. It's the story of a family from their first appearance until the last one is gone. It spans several centuries and this family has enormous influence on world affairs. But, I'm getting ahead of myself.

The writing process will not be the normal process, because in addition to you and me, we're going to invite others to write pieces of this book as well...as many as 40 – most of whom you don't know, and will only meet once. There'll be no collaboration and very little information will be passed from one author to another. Here's how that will work:

First, I'll write the first five chapters of this new book where I'll introduce the initial characters and the first few descendants. Everyone will use these chapters as an initial guide as they prepare their individual parts. I'll give some clues about future events for others to expand upon, but most of these clues will be hints only without any real specifics. It'll be up to the group to expand upon those clues.

You will write the last chapter, along with a couple of others, so you'll be responsible for bringing the family and their entire history to a close. In that last chapter, you'll resolve all outstanding issues and tie all remaining mysteries together.

We'll do this over the period of a year. Each chapter will be written in less than two weeks, and some chapters will be written simultaneously by people who don't know what the other is writing. About half way through the book, I'll direct a new character to be introduced and choose some writers to bring this character to life for the reader. These writers will be able to consult with each other for one day, after which they'll write their individual chapters without further consultation. Once written, the remaining authors will be allowed to read, but not take notes, on these chapters before penning their parts.

Now, here's the kicker: Once the book is finished, the story line must be consistent through the entire book. All events predicted by not only myself but others along the way will occur exactly as predicted, and there'll be no discrepancies in the characters, the story line, or the unfolding of events.

Once we're finished, there'll be no editing of the story content – only grammatical corrections – after which it'll go straight to the printer. Once a first edition is printed, it will be used to entice a major publisher into funding the project, and placing it on bookstore shelves around the country, and then the world.

What do you think of our chances? Do you think:

  • The story will be interesting at all?
  • We'll be able to keep the family history meaningful?
  • The characters will be believable?
  • We'll be able to resolve in a meaningful way all the histories and events?
  • We won't all look like fools?

Do you think this will make any sense at all, or will it just be the biggest piece of junk ever committed to paper? I'm betting, and as a matter of fact I'll guarantee, this latter option.

So what's the point?

Such a book exists. It was written over the space of 1500 years by people, many of whom never met, had no collaboration, many of whom were unschooled, even illiterate, although some parts were written by very scholarly individuals, and a couple were written by powerful leaders of their own country. In fact, it's a collection of 66 writings by some 40 authors all bound together in a single book. It contains no factual errors, no unresolved issues (at least from the internal perspective of the primary characters), and best of all, explains the entire human condition! You probably have at least one, and maybe many yourself.

How did this happen? Well, there is only one way this could occur, and the book itself explains why. It's because it is inspired by someone greater than ourselves. It is what it claims to be: The inspired Word of God. It would be impossible for the Bible to exist any other way.

Unless, of course, you believe in evolution, in which case you have no problem with 1 + 1 = 43 billion.