The Best Day Of The Year…



Is the first workday after Daylight Savings Time kicks in.

In 1883, Canadian and American railroads imposed their will on a continent by implementing standard time (you can never be too careful when “Big Railroad” is concerned).  Before then, time was a very local matter and the “official time” was usually kept by a good clock, often the one on the church steeple in the center of town.  You can see how the Brits took this concept to a whole other level with Big Ben.  Officially declaring standard time wasn’t accomplished in U.S. law until 1918 and with it came the concept of Daylight Saving Time.

Not everyone liked the idea.  It was repealed the next year, leaving it to the locals to decide what they wanted.  It was reinstituted nationally during WWII.  As recently as 1966, lawmakers were still horsing around with the concept when they wrote The Uniform Time Act, which permitted states to determine if they would use the concept, but mandated the date on which it would occur.  In 2007, Congress moved the implementation date for DST four or five weeks earlier in the year.

All of this was an attempt to save electricity (which is why the two world wars are not a coincidence in this story).  To cyclists who have day jobs, it’s all about the weeknight ride.  I happen to be one of those cyclists, so I very happily hopped on my bike Monday night and went for a spin.  The above picture was taken at 6:00 PM, and as you can see there was still plenty of sun to light my way.  A good time was had by all.

Sadly, today was an absolutely exquisite day, the best of the year by far.  I say that this is a sad thing because I found myself in the basement of the Pentagon for the entire day and forced to endure a two-hour commute home (metro-auto combo).  By the time I arrived, BOB (Bright Orange Ball, as we used to call the sun in my Army days) was setting on the horizon.

But still, I have Monday’s ride and many more sunny weeknight rides to look forward to.

17 thoughts on “The Best Day Of The Year…

  1. You are a strong cyclist indeed to get out for rides after a 2-hour evening commute…especially since that is probably matched by a 2-hour morning commute. Enjoy that beautiful looooong Virginia spring!

    • Thank goodness this was unusual. Although I’m a frequent visitor to the Pentagon I do not work there. My normal commute is “only” about 70 minutes!

  2. Point of order mate, “Big Ben” is the great bell inside the tower which is actually called “Elizabeth Tower” after Her Majesty the Queen.

    Common mistake which even loads of people my side of the pond make.

    Our weather is starting to cheer up after a record breaking wet winter with floods all over the country, we were starting to develop webbed feet! Glad it is your side too.

    • I believe you once explained this to me, which demonstrates my poor ability to retain anything. Although I do recall a different “point of order” with regards to the Union Flag vs. the Union Jack. Fortunately, I remember at least that much and I regularly use it during small talk to impress my friends.

  3. I’m sorry your didn’t get your ride in, but am stoked that I know a blogger who spends time in the basement of the Pentagon. I hope they treated you alright down there.

    • I’m definitely a bigshot, at least in my own mind. There’s much to be said about visiting the Pentagon. For example, sodas are cheaper there than anywhere else I know and there is ample bathroom space. As for working there, it is important to note that almost nobody there smiles – not a good sign.

    • I was appointed to a pondering committee, the purpose of which was to ponder the future existence of my organization. Having contemplated the various permutations of said problem, the committee adjurned to file reports and attend meetings hosted by other committees.

      • You live at a pitch of excitement that would be too much for me. I hope that sound pension plans for all affected came into the reckoning.

  4. Over here in Australia the Northern most of the Eastern States (Queensland) has refused to adopt daylight savings. The reasons are mostly not good, but there is one funny one that keeps getting voiced by the rural folk is that the animals will have to wake up earlier… as if sheep, chickens, and cows are operating not on daylight but by a clock. So in two weeks DST ends for us and you Northern Hemisphere dwellers will bask. Enjoy the evening riding.

    • Well, I suppose if an animal is required to get up by a human than it might be true. Dairy cows and the morning milking come to mind. Somehow, I think the animals around here manage to adjust.

      It is snowing out my window as I write these words on March 25th. I am mildly suspecious that the Southern Hemisphere has finally figured out a way to keep the sun for themselves. However, the days appear to be getting longer and it would seem my ire should not be directed at the Australians, but rather at the Canadians who are unable to keep their cold air properly stored.

      • Ahh… those pesky Canadians. I am sure that a member of your congress has a bill proposal to build a wall (a la Mexican border control) between the two countries.

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