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Spires: Time changes and being late

Spires: Time changes and being late

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I do something that some people may consider odd. I have all of my clocks set ten minutes fast.

You ask why would you do such a thing?

Well, it started many years ago, when I developed a reputation for running late.

One of my friends suggested that I set my clocks ahead 10 minutes as a way of offsetting my tardiness. Believe it or not, it has worked, and I am very seldom late for an appointment.

My wife, on the other hand, likes clocks that are set to the correct time.

So, I had to compromise about setting clocks in the house up ten minutes. In other words, they are on the correct time. My watch, truck clock and one electric clock are set ten minutes ahead; however, my cell phone can’t be bumped ahead ten minutes, meaning I have one clock that is always correct.

In essence, we operate on different times.

Then Daylight Saving Time comes along and throws a wrench in my time situation.

I actually like that extra hour of daylight in the evenings. When it is time to “fall back,” my biological clock gets all messed up.

It will take me a couple of weeks to finally get adjusted. In the meantime, I wake up an hour earlier than my clock says, which is ten minutes fast, which actually means I’m waking up 50 minutes early. It can be very confusing, if you think about it very much.

When I was a kid, Daylight Saving Time was almost a right of passage. It meant that overnight we got an extra hour to play outside.

The adults fussed about it, but, like me, the kids in the neighborhood looked at it like a day of celebration.

Having that extra hour did, however, mess with getting our homework. Some of those afternoons were filled with sitting at the dining room table staring out the window while I did multiplication tables or conjugated verbs.

Later on, when that extra hour of sunlight meant until 9 p.m., it wasn’t too bad. It has only been a couple of days since the time changed and I already miss that extra hour in the evening.

I can’t wait until we get that hour back in the spring.

Byron Spires is a retired newspaper editor. He has written dozens of short stories and serials in the Havana Herald. He recently published “The Curious Life of Marci Bell” in a series of three books. You can email him at


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