Spring Ahead, Fall Flat
Sun Mar 27th 2005, 5:44pm
sunset Next weekend will be that time again, where we go through the torturous ritual of setting our clocks one hour forward, to shift one hour of daylight from morning to evening. Or as some people call it, Daylight Saving Time (which is kind of funny, since no daylight is actually saved). Why do we do this to our bodies, year after year? I guess for some people it's no big deal, but losing that hour of sleep takes a serious toll on me, and I know I'm not alone. One study found there is a 7% increase in traffic accidents the week after the spring time change because drivers are disoriented and sleep-deprived. And then in the fall, the time change causes sudden darkness for nighttime commuters, yielding similar disorientation. It's true, the extra hour of daylight in the summer can be nice, but not all of us like being out in the sun anyway, so is it really worth it?

Benjamin Franklin After so many years of enduring this obnoxious ritual, I decided to do a little research on it. Guess whose idea it was? Of course, DST has a tumultuous history, but it can all be traced back to Benjamin Franklin, who we all know and love, but may have forgotten he coined such ever endearing phrases as "Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise". (I'm not a fan of mornings, in case you didn't know).

Apparently DST equivalents exist in at least 70 countries worldwide, including all major industrialized countries except Japan, so I'm afraid this little tradition may never go away. But Arizona and Hawaii have the right idea, they don't do DST. Hmm, I've always wanted to live in Hawaii.

Visitor comments
On Mon Mar 28th 2005, 5:05pm, Forest posted:
I hate DST. >:[

On Fri Apr 1st 2005, 7:21am, Clay posted:
Man, the 'spring forward' day is one of my all-time calendar favorites. I don't know if it's more because I like the extra hour of light in the evening or if it's because the transition to DST signals that spring is here, and summer is on the way.

I guess I do feel like I'm saving an hour of daylight, since I'm so rarely up early enough to see that first hour of sun anyway.

Plus, it should be noted that I live in a part of the U.S. that has major seasonal changes, so spring and summer are a very welcome change after winter's been dragging out for months on end.

I could do without the bi-annual hour-shuffling ritual, though. But I'll take that extra hour of daylight at the end of my day, thankyouverymuch. :)

On Sat Apr 2nd 2005, 2:19pm, Steve Kehlet posted:
Clay, tell me that's an April Fool's joke... We'll discuss this again on Monday, when we're both sleep deprived :-). But you make a good case. I suppose if I could admit to a few saving graces of DST, they would be--for a week or so anyway--the workday seems to end earlier. And, of course, how nice that one, blissful day is in the fall when we get an hour of extra sleep.

On Wed Apr 13th 2005, 3:15pm, Visitor posted:
How might we be related? My great grandfather was Oswald Vinding Kehlet. He came to California early in the century from one of the Great Lakes states. With his sons, he owned and operated Meeks Bay Resort on the west shore of Lake Tahoe.

Do we have a relative in common?

On Sat Apr 23rd 2005, 1:35pm, Clay posted:
OK, so I'm a bit late with this update, but what the heck ;)

The DST transition wasn't so bad this year, but worse than last year. But I couldn't have known (well, I probably *should* have known). I was all psyched the night before, and actually got to bed at a quasi-reasonable hour.

So, you can imagine my surprise when my daughter was beating on my head at 5:45 in the morning, a full hour and a half earlier than her usual wake-up time. I guess she didn't get the memo.

So, the first couple days were a tad tougher than usual, but I'm still happy to be saving my daylight! ;)

On Mon Apr 25th 2005, 3:44pm, Steve Kehlet posted:
I hear you about the first few days being tougher. Over the time change weekend I had the pleasure of carrying my employer's 24/7 on-call support pager, and the first Monday (April 4th) I got paged three times in the middle of the night (2am, 3am, 5am) by users in India. And to make matters worse I had an important appointment to make early that morning! So in the end, enduring one trauma suddenly made the other seem small in comparison. So, a few weeks later, I definitely agree the extra light in the evening is nice. Hello, summer!

On Mon Apr 25th 2005, 3:51pm, Steve Kehlet posted:
To my fellow Kehlet clan member, it's possible we're related, my Kehlet relatives come from Illinois. But I heard somewhere that "Kehlet" is like "Smith" in Denmark :-). I wonder how true that is...

On Fri Nov 28th 2008, 1:46pm, Anne Björnström posted:
Hi, I searched google for the name Kehlet and your blog came up. I'm looking for possible descendents of my ancestor Peter Kehlet, whose son Axel Kehlet moved to Illinois. I read that your Kehlet relatives come from Illinois so I thought maybe you've heard of Axel?
If you want, you can email me at annebjornstrom@gmail.com.