LAST SUNDAY AT 2 a.m., we set our clocks back one hour.
Our state legislature has tried but failed to remove New Hampshire from Eastern Standard Time and convert to Atlantic Standard Time for the calendar year. That means we could stop the twice-a-year clock change for Daylight Saving Time.
Of course, there’s a benefit in setting the clocks back an hour because the mornings are lighter, but for those getting out of work in the evening, things appear a lot darker. Today’s sunset is at 4:33 p.m.
On Dec. 5, about a month later, sunset will be at 4:12 p.m. You get the idea.
I don’t enjoy the early evening darkness throughout the long autumn/winter. It’s such a mood-buster, especially during these difficult quarantine times.
From what I’ve read, if we switched to Atlantic Standard Time, mornings around here would begin getting light between 8 and 8:30 a.m. during winter. But that would also push sunset past 5 p.m. even in December. Nice.
And I’m sure that all those Gate City restaurants, bars and other establishments that have been struggling during the ongoing pandemic would’ve appreciated the extra evening daylight that encourages more activity in a community.
For parents with children waiting outside for a school bus in the dark chilly morning air, however, that would be a tough sell.
What if we compromised by splitting the difference?
I like the idea of permanently setting the clocks back 30 minutes, but that’s another can of worms.
Half of the United States would be out of sync with most of the globe’s respective clock times, say experts who have calculated these time-changing scenarios.
Fellow Nashuans I’ve talked to don’t like changing the clocks, and science seems to agree.
Studies show that twice a year clock changing messes up the body’s circadian rhythm (natural biological clock). Our brains already know how to go with the flow.
Our bodies keep track of the seasons, and when sudden changes in seasonal day length occur, this can cause anxiety, stress, seasonal affective disorder, etc. I know women suffering from SAD, and a couple of them use light therapy to cope.
Even our pets have the same built-in biological clock. Your dog knows exactly when to eat, sleep, poop, and wait for your return from work.
As we set the clocks back one hour, our pets often become confused. Fido is still on Daylight Saving Time, sitting on the edge of the bed waiting for you to take him outside.
You can thank President Lyndon B. Johnson for establishing the Daylight Saving Time mess we can’t seem to crawl out of. He signed the Uniform Time Act into law on April 12, 1966.