Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Volume 2, Number 34: The Great Lakes Time Zone

(Note: I had originally posted this to my Yahoo! GeoCities blog on October 29, 2007.)

I had forgotten that we cannot set our clocks back for another week, and that frustrated me because I was really looking forward to getting an extra hour of sleep Saturday night.

As it is, it sucks being in the Eastern Time Zone when your home city is much closer to Chicago than it is to New York City.

Let me explain. Let's suppose the work day starts around 8AM and ends around 5PM, no matter what time zone you're in. So if I lived in Chicago, then when I got home on a Monday night, I would have to wait one fewer hour for Monday Night RAW to come on, and then afterwards, I'd go to sleep an hour sooner.

Around the age of 18, I had ideas of moving to Chicago after college--"better city, better time zone" than Detroit, I thought. That dream is on hold indefinitely, just because I'm not about to move anywhere at the moment. I have to do a number of things first, like stabilizing my career, rebuilding my savings, fixing up the house, and selling it.

Then one day, I thought, wait a minute. What about creating a new time zone that is a half-hour ahead of Chicago, but a half-hour behind New York? For example, Monday Night RAW, which starts at 9PM Eastern/8PM Central, would start at 8:30 in the Great Lakes Time Zone. Yep--a half-hour less to wait for the show, a half-hour of extra sleep afterwards!

I know, I could just as easily go to work a half-hour later and leave a half-hour later. I can try that now that I work at home more. But I wouldn't try it in a regular job--you and the other workers wouldn't be available to one another for an hour. Also, it's sheer torture seeing other workers leave a half-hour before I do. Everybody would have to work and leave a half-hour later, not just one person.

Still, this week is the perfect week to perform an experiment: Set all my clocks back a half-hour, turning my house into the Great Lakes Time Zone. Then from there, I can find out if creating this time zone is worth the trouble. After all, the clocks should have been an hour behind to begin with (and yes, I curse that 2005 Energy bill that expanded Daylight Savings Time by a few unneeded weeks). So as I post this blog entry, it will be 8:51AM Eastern Time, which will be 8:21AM Great Lakes Time.

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