Sunday, March 9, 2008

Clocks Forward

The clocks went forward an hour this morning. It's called Daylight Saving Time. San Fran is now only seven hours behind the UK until clocks there change on 23 March.

It is the earliest time change here since 1974. And it doesn't suit everyone, especially farmers with their herds of cows! An interesting article in the San Fran Chronicle by Jonathan Curiel explains their problems and some of the history of the day. Newshour Extra give a more detailed history.

Benjamin Franklin in 1784 is thought to be the first person to have thought about rearranging the day to save candles. America did it in both World Wars to save fuel but only established it in 1966 as a permanent way of reducing bills and use of electricity, the states of Arizona and Hawaii opting out.

'Summer time' was brought forward by four or five weeks by President Bush in 2005, encouraged by commercial gains. Millions of more dollars are made by retailers and industries like golf where evening light keeps people out and about!

In San Fran today we have had streaming sunshine again as we are now at the start of three months of summer temps. We had low 60s in the city and higher in surrounding areas.

In contrast severe storms with 95 mph winds battered England and Wales especially in the south west in the worst storm so far of the winter. Conditions were similar to the storm in San Fran in January.

Only we called ours a hurricane!

But on the philosophy of time, I liked this humorous piece by Lynette Evans, Home and Garden Editor of the San Fran Chronicle, an excerpt of which:

'We lose an hour. That idea I comprehend. I lose hours more often than John loses his reading glasses. Like most workers, I start the day with a reasonable set of tasks to accomplish before cocktails, and before I know it, "the sun has set over the yardarm," as my father was fond of quoting, and people are pouring out of office buildings and into their favorite watering holes, while I'm at least an hour behind on my day, wondering what happened'.

Pic shows the clock tower at the Embarcadero

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