Monthly Archives: September 2015

Why I Hate Daylight Savings Time

Every fall I look forward to the resetting of our clocks to the natural rhythm of the day/night cycle. Every spring I dread the artificial manipulation of time which tends to warp the fabric of rationality and leave us drained and deprived of energy instead of refreshing us.

Daylight savings time is the creation of evil overlords desiring the destruction of the human race.

Maybe there’s some part of the planet where the thing actually works. I’ve never lived there. It makes no sense to me to get up at 7 or 8 a.m. in the dark, and still have daylight at 8 or 9 p.m. at night. The human body wasn’t mean to tweak its natural rhythms to such extremes.

Humans, like morning glories and sunflowers, are set to the natural rhythms of the sun. Get up in daylight, go to sleep at night. The invention of the electric light causes us to be more productive during dark, but it doesn’t upset the human body’s natural rhythms quite like daylight savings time.

Getting up in the dark starts our day off in tired mode. The unnatural sunshine late at night keeps us playing long after we should have been winding down for the day. Instead of a natural rhythm throughout the year, we frenetically overspend during the summer and play catch up during the winter. No wonder Americans are stressed!

Ecuador tried daylight savings time one year. In a country where the sun consistently comes up at 6 and goes down at 6, this seemed a bit ridiculous. But the higher ups wanted to be “civilized.” After about six months of this nonsense, the president had to discard the idea. His people simply did not comply with something that was so utterly counterproductive.

I know all the reasons why people want daylight savings time, but I’ve never seen it work in a way that made sense. From a child’s perspective, I hated having to go to bed while it was still daylight. From a parent’s perspective, I hated having grumpy, irritated children who stayed up too late because they couldn’t sleep in the daylight. As an adult, I hate the false sense of time the extra hours created, lulling me into believing it was still early when in reality it was very late.

So I’m looking forward to getting back to normal and allowing my circadian clock to reset to a proper rhythm. Maybe one day, Americans will be as wise as Ecuadorians and rebel against the stupidity of government officials who mess with the natural order of time

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Living in the Wild

When I was a youngster, I couldn’t wait to get free of the small town I grew up in. I wanted the farther horizons, to see the “big city” for myself. In college I loved traveling to New York City with its peacock attitude and flashy lights, but quickly realized I had no desire to live in a big city.

I have found myself living in metroplexes and cities of a 100,000 as an adult and while I wouldn’t mind living in Fort Worth again, I am content living in the country. The solitude and tranquility of country living is a welcome balm to the busyness of life and the hustle and bustle of the workplace. You might say the country is my retreat.

The most enticing joys of country living are the wonderful neighbors that drop by unexpectedly. One lovely fall afternoon, a flock of wild turkeys promenaded through the backyard, stalked by our cat, who couldn’t resist the temptation, but was no match for the majestic birds.

Another day, investigating a noise at the back door, we encountered a badger, one of our more reclusive neighbors. He rooted through a sumptuous feast of wet garbage, cantaloupe, and watermelon rinds.

The ubiquitous coyote has loped through our front yard, along with the occasional cougar. While I delighted in the nightly coyote symphonies, having a cougar run through the yard was a bit unsettling. More so, when we’ve gone out at night to rescue what we thought was our treed cat, only to have the cougar jump out of the tree with a thwack and low growl and flee into the night.

But our most impressive and regal neighbor was a red fox who stopped by one pleasant afternoon for a lengthy chat. My husband and I were enjoying the cool in lawn chairs when Mr. Fox strolled around the corner of the carport and stopped to look us over, not twenty feet away.

We held our breath, frozen in our chairs, then spoke gently. The fox pricked his ears and dropped to a lounging position on the tawny grass (We’re in West Texas. Even in the spring, the grass isn’t green, but a khaki brown.) For twenty minutes the fox watched us, listening intently to our low and one-sided conversation with him. Then he rose and resumed his regular routine, trotting off in a leisurely manner.

 

Shouting into the Wind

Sometimes writing a blog feels like shouting into the wind—tossing words out into emptiness without listeners. But I knew when I started this blog it was apt to be like that. As an introvert, I’m less likely to engage with large numbers of people, and with my busy school schedule, I have little time and energy left over on the weekend to keep up with the massive chat campaign necessary for successful blogging.

So why do it? Why blog and throw out my opinions and ideas on a vacuous sea of cyberspace?

The challenge. Writing a blog challenges me as a writer and as a person. It takes work to come up with an interesting article that doesn’t bore me or potential readers. I like the thrill of crafting words that might touch a reader or stick in someone’s mind long after they’ve forgotten who wrote it.

The interaction. Okay, I know that sounds weird since I just said I’m an introvert, but I really do like meeting people one on one. So exchanging ideas with a reader or fellow blogger is a good thing, and something I enjoy, just not a whole bunch and all at once.

The potential. This connects back to the reason my novels on Kindle are always priced at 99 cents. If even one person reads my blog (or book) and gets something out of it, even if only a mild entertainment, I’ve succeeded. I’ve forged a link in time and space with another individual. Doesn’t matter if it’s only for a moment. In the vastness of time and space I crossed paths with another human being, exchanged thoughts, and we both are better for it. Even if the reader never responds, that connection is important to me.

Shouting into the wind is primal. It’s an innate part of being human, a deep seated need to impact our world, to make our thoughts and worlds last forever, to shout them to the four corners of the world. It’s cathartic. Shouting releases tension, purges toxins, promotes healing and health.

Shouting into the wind strengthens us, frees us, remakes us, empowers us, and gives us the courage and purpose to seek new horizons and explore new countries. So even if no one is listening, even if you think no one is listening, keep writing, keep struggling, keep creating, keep shouting into the wind.

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