Here is some good news for those of you that have been enduring below freezing temperatures for the last three months - Spring is almost here, at least as far as the clocks are concerned. That's because this weekend, most Americans will anticipate the season change by moving their clocks ahead by an hour. Also referred to as Daylight Saving or British Summer Time, this age-old tradition dates all the way back to World War One.
The clock change was first suggested in 1784 by Sir Benjamin Franklin. But it was not considered seriously until 1907, when British resident William Willet marketed it as a way to save energy. Even then, it took another nine years to convince British officials to make it a law. The United States of America followed two years later, but only for the duration of World War One to provide soldiers additional combat time. When the war ended, things went back to normal until World War Two, when time change was reinstated and then repealed again.
It was not until April 1966, that 'Daylight Saving' became a permanent fixture on the American calendar. This time, it was justified as a way to conserve energy and provide farmers more daylight hours to take their fresh produce to market. However two States - Hawaii and American Samoa, as well as, some cities in Arizona, opted out.
Over the years, many countries all over the world have joined in the tradition. However, while most still change their clocks at the end of March or April, Americans keep moving the date up. Former President Ronald Reagan made the first change in 1986, by moving it from the last to the first weekend in April. In 2005, George W. Bush, not only moved the 'Spring Forward' date to the second Sunday in March, but also, extended the 'Fall Back' date out an extra week in November. While the dates were moved under the guise of saving energy and helping farmers, they have effectively cut down the long dreary months of winter by about five weeks - At least as far as the clocks are concerned. Now if only nature would follow that schedule!
So don't forget to change those clocks and be sure to try get to bed on time on Saturday night for you will have one less hour to frolic on Sunday. For those of you dreading the loss of an hour, here is some sweet news - Krispy Kreme is offering a free doughnut to every customer all across America, to help compensate for the lack of sleep! If that doesn't have you leaping out of bed in joy, we don't know what will!