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Fido and Me - Lights Out

October 31, 2013

“Something is terribly wrong,” Fido said.

“I noticed you are in some kind of funk, Big Boy. What’s up?”

“Where is my supper?”

“Supper will be right on time, I know how you count on it, the way you pace around when it’s supper time. I also noticed you started pacing about an hour early.”

“You’re late with my supper. I’m starving.”

“Ah, I forget about this every single year. It’s the time change. You’ll get used to it in about a week or so.”

“I don’t do time changes.”

“Here’s the way it works, Fido. Every fall, right about Halloween, humans change their clocks all around. We move them back one hour.”

“I don’t like it.”

“If it makes any difference to you, not all humans like the time changes, either. People who are used to going home after work when there is still light in the sky now have to go home in the dark.”

“Yes, but they still have supper.”

“Don’t mope so much. Your supper will be right on time. I already said that.”

“Why do humans change the clocks?”

“In the summer, it’s for the summer people, who like lots and lots of daylight after work so they can still have time to play with their dogs, or whatever, after work.”

“It’s not summer now.”

“Right. In the winter, we change the clocks back an hour so little kids don’t have to walk to school in the dark, and so people can have a little bit of light in the sky before they go to work.”

“Is that why you are serving my breakfast earlier?”

“Right you are! Now you’re getting it.”

“I don’t like it.”

“What’s not to like? Surely you aren’t exactly thrilled with dark dogwalks in the morning when it still feels like the middle of the night.”

“It’s not about dogwalks. It’s about supper. Where is my supper?”

“By the time we get done with this conversation, it will be supper time. Scheez. You’re relentless sometimes.”

“Dogs don’t have clocks.”

“I know clocks are not natural and that they don’t exactly fit in with natural body clocks. People have body clocks, too, and the time changes mess with them, too, as I mentioned before.”

“Can you explain the time changes?”

“Not really. Nobody can. The idea picked up steam during the World Wars in Europe, Fido. The idea was to find a method by which people could save energy and other resources for the war efforts.”

“I don’t get it.”

“Most everybody doesn’t get it, and humans never got to the point where they could really pin down the overall effect—whether it worked or not.”

“Then why do it?”

“Got me. I read once that circadian body clocks, set by light and darkness, never really adjust to gaining an extra hour of sunlight at the end of the day during daylight saving time, and they don’t adjust back easily enough to make a difference. A lot of people think humans get tired faster.”

“But at least they’re not hungry.”

“Well, Fido, maybe not for those reasons, anyway.”

“I’m hungry.”

“So I gathered.”

“Where’s supper?”

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