Home > Southeast Asia Trip > So we got +1 hr

So we got +1 hr

Well, technically, we gained back the hour we lost.  I stumbled across National Geographic article today talking about daylight savings.

Turns out my namesake – Mr. Ben Franklin – was the first to suggest such a thing (well at least first ‘western mind’ to do so.

Apparently Ben + I have alot more in common than our name: i.e. rising early.  He was a little curious as to why the sun would rise before he did on certain times of the year.  He just didn’t know an exact science.

Nope, it was ‘ze germans’ who can take response for daylight savings.  They adopted it to save coal (needed for the way) by reducing the need for man-made light at night by bumping back time.

I’d like to think it does save us energy, only if we take advantage of the revised ‘sleeping when dark’ schedule.  Obviously people on fixed schedules may consume more electricity by needing light at (now) darker hours at the day because they need to be awake for work, but if your time is variable, you do save power.

The article also talked about the health effects, and one thing is eerily relevant to me:

Till Roenneberg, a chronobiologist at Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, Germany, said his studies show that our circadian body clocks—set by light and darkness—never adjust to gaining an “extra” hour of sunlight to the end of the day during daylight saving time.

“The consequence of that is that the majority of the population has drastically decreased productivity, decreased quality of life, increasing susceptibility to illness, and is just plain tired,” Roenneberg said.

One reason so many people in the developed world are chronically overtired, he said, is that they suffer from “social jet lag.” In other words, their optimal circadian sleep periods are out of whack with their actual sleep schedules.

Shifting daylight from morning to evening only increases this lag, he said.


I’ve noticed it at school to.  All my classmates are just generally tired at different times of the day.  Heck, outside of school, most people are tired.  I don’t think it’s entirely a lack of sleep either.  There are days when I go to sleep for 9 hours, wake up – finding myself tired still, and fall asleep for another 2 hours.  At last, i’ve found the culprit: Daylight Savings!!!

Sunrise Toronto

But i’m not one to complain… I’ve slept in different timezones, gone to sleep (and awaken) at all hours of the day, immersed myself in siesta-following cultures, and fallen asleep in the loudest/most unsleepable conditions.

Categories: Southeast Asia Trip
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