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November 27, 2013

Wishing we would fall out of falling back

We all turned back our clocks on Sunday, Nov. 3 for Daylight Savings Time. But do you know why we do this?

 I didn’t and so I Googled “History of Daylight Savings Time” and here is the gist of what I learned. It dates back to the 1700s when we did everything based on when we had sunlight. Benjamin Franklin was the one to suggest we all get up earlier to save on candles. But it is said that he was just joking. It wasn’t implemented until World War I when countries at war started setting their clocks an hour early to save coal. 

Daylight Savings Time was repealed during the years of peace, but revived again during World War II. More than 70 countries currently practice it because they believe it saves money on electricity, but actually a study has shown just the opposite. In the U.S., Arizona and Hawaii have opted out. It has been shown that DST has messed with sleeping patterns and may also cause heart attacks, according to the American Journal of Cardiology. More and more countries are revaluating whether or not to hold on to this relic from the past. I, for one hope we do not.

Nov. 1 was celebrated as National Author’s Day. Nancy Waller and I were introduced as CWTH authors. I feel like a fraud when introduced as an author because I never intended for my “Dear Bert” letters, to be published as a book. However, Nancy is a real author and her book, “My Nanking Home, 1918-1937,”  is about her life in China, where she was born. Every afternoon at 3 p.m. a group gathers in the library and one of the staff reads aloud to them. They have just finished reading our two books and are now reading Beardsall’s, “History of Cooperstown,” which they are finding fascinating.

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