"I'm too low for zero
Watching flies with my eyes till sunrise
It's daylight when I hit the sack"
"Too Low For Zero"
~ Elton John ~
Saints and sinners, it's that time of year where we involuntarily sacrifice one hour as part of Daylight Saving Time.
Starting at 2 a.m. Sunday morning, everyone's clocks, watches and time-telling mechanisms are changed to one hour forward. Well, unless you live in Arizona, Hawaii, the part of Indiana in the Eastern time zone, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and American Samoa. Those folks don't have to make the hourly sacrifice - and probably question our thought process for having to dissect sixty minutes every Spring.
For some people, losing that particular hour doesn't mean much. They're probably sleeping during the whole thing and planned ahead with turning the clocks forward.
However, there are those who'll actually miss that additional hour this weekend. In fact, I've compiled a list of things that some people would be doing during that particular hour of the night, and that they won't be able to, at least until October and the next clock change.
Since I've started reading "The DaVinci Code," I'm sure to miss out on reading 10-15 pages of it. Unless I feel like dumbing it down a bit, I could not be enjoying one of my numerous favorite magazines. Of course, that's only if I'm home.
For those who know what the night can do for them, and I'm one of them, one hour away could lead to three less alcoholic drinks, four begone beers, nine fast dances and one nice slow dance. Lungs will be given a reprieve since 3 to 4 less cigarettes will be smoked - and weight watchers will be void their late-night snack, whether it be healthy or greasy.
Television viewers will be without two syndicate sitcoms on Nick At Nite, the late broadcast of their local news, or lacking their favorite informercial on selling real estate, chicken cookers, or paper stretchers.
Parents of little babies surely won't mind missing a diaper changing, and third-shift employees get to see their work night glide by a bit smoother. Convenience store employees will have 10-12 extra cups of coffee on hand, along with a handful of those mystery hot dogs that've been rolling on the grease logs all night.
Purveyors of the Internet will have 60 minutes of surfing wiped out from under them, while healthy couples bid adieu to some additional nocturnal nestling. My co-workers, Jason Feather and Barry Taglieber, if they aren't asleep, will be missing an hour of Madden 2004 on Playstation 2 (and rubbing it in my face).
Lord only knows what activity night-owl Bill Rettew will be shy one hour by. You'll have to ask him about that one. I don't even want to imagine. It may involve listening to Bob Dylan and eating Krispy Kreme donuts.
Speaking of donuts, the guy who has to make the donuts at Dunkin Donuts has diminished donut dreamtime on his mind. Creatures of the night, and you know who you are, will have your prowling prohibited by an hour.
Last but not least, the many disciplines of Mr. Sandman who call it a night after the 11 p.m. news will miss 3,600 seconds of snoozing, but probably won't notice it because of the abundance of sleep they partake in throughout the year. They certainly can't wait for fall to "fall back" an hour.
So go ahead and change your clocks, saints and sinners. I'm sure all of my saints are planning ahead so they won't be late for church on Sunday. I can also bet the sinners are waiting in anticipation to see which saints happen to forget, and watch them sweat getting to church on time.
Until then, some final words of wisdom to "write-off" to - okay, we've had our fun with Daylight Saving Time. Now do yourself a favor and check the batteries on those smoke detectors. And if you don't have a smoke detector, go out and get yourself one, and please remember to put a battery in it. Those things aren't necessarily artwork hanging on your walls. They tend to save lives when used properly. Don't lose anyone you care about trying to prove me wrong.
Dennis J. Wright can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.