Thursday, April 09, 2009

The Bedroom: Where Smart Gets Dumb

A few years ago I bought a “smart” alarm clock. It’s smart because all I had to do was to tell it which time zone I live in, and it will automatically change itself for daylight savings time. It wasn’t a feature I was determined to find in an alarm clock. But it would eliminate that smidgen of discombobulation that I feel when the clocks change. “What time is it really? OK, the clock on the cable box should be right, because I am not responsible for changing that one. Now I need to change the rest… am I late or early for where ever it is I am going today?”

A year after we bought this smart alarm clock, the dates on which daylight savings starts and ends changed. Now we’re springing ahead a full month earlier, and falling back a full month later. My clock, however, doesn’t know that. There are now two times each year that the clock will arbitrarily change itself, according to the old daylight savings schedule.

On Sunday I woke up and glanced at the clock. It was 9 in the morning. Our friend Mike was going to arrive at our house at 9:30 and Todd was going to help him with a project in our workshop. I reached over, gently shook Todd and said “Honey, get up. Mike’s going to be here in a half hour.” He groggily rubbed his eyes, got up, and stumbled to the shower. I sat in bed for a little while longer and read a book. Todd dressed and went downstairs to eat something before Mike arrived.

“Honey?” he called up the stairs. “Why do all the clocks down here say it’s 8:30?”



Anonymous Taoist Biker said...

I have the same damned clock. My parents gave it to me as a gift about six months before DST changed.

It is nice that it resets itself after power outages, still.

April 9, 2009 at 7:32 AM  

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