A modest proposal…

We all just lost an hour sleep. It makes us grumpy, large-data-set-grinding nerds tell us it causes a measurable increase in accidents, parents have to manage cycle-conditioned children. Many question the reasoning of it all.

Some say the archaic practice has to be done away with, despite alleged energy efficiency gains and whatever agrarian benefits might have brought us the concept of “saving” daylight with our watches. I am not one of those, but might humbly suggest adapting *how* we practice the fall-backward / spring-forward dance ritual.

I hate the end of daylight savings, because suddenly it is dark on the way home from work, and I have to dig my bike lights out before my commute – the surest sign that summer is truly over. However, this is an inevitable product of the tilt of the planet, not our artificial mucking with sun-clock synch. This way, it is more of a band-aid rip than a dragging out of the coming darkness – it would happen if we didn’t switch clocks, just sooner. That is hardly a reason to hate daylight savings.

The reality is that most people prefer falling back, because we get that extra hour of sleep. We are a society of underslept, overworked drones feeding an unrelenting God we call “the Economy”, and love an extra hour of respite whenever we can get it. Despite the gloomy weather ahead, we all take that hour of sleep as a wonderful gift (ignoring the Marshmallow Test implications of it all).

This is what caused me to think that the entire problem is the springing forward and resultant loss of sleep. We cannot afford to lose sleep in this frantic lifestyle. So why do we?

The simple change I propose is to shift the “leap forward” moment from 2:00am on a Sunday to 4:00pm on a Friday. That way, the weekend comes 1 hour earlier for everyone. 1 less hour of waking (and working) means we will enter spring more refreshed and better slept, not the opposite. Who isn’t ready to get off work and have a beer at 4:00 on a Friday in early March? We can treat it like a 1-hour Statutory Holiday at a time of year when we need it the most. Bonus less bike light need.

Or, alternately, instead of going on the internet to complain about losing an hour of sleep, people could just go to bed an hour earlier. That would work, too.

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