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As has been well established, I'm not a huge fan of Daylight Saving Time or of stopping the saving of daylight, if that's what we doing now.

For one thing, I'd like to believe that at some point in our distant past, trying to fool ourselves into thinking the daylight part of the day was an hour longer may have had value. But as we edge closer to the end of the 2010s, it seems like a solution in search of a problem.

For another thing, the beginning or end of Daylight Saving Time brings one more opportunity for me to fully appreciate just how inadequate I am, as if I needed help.

I mean, it's not like I feel bad about it. At some point in your life, you just have to let slip the illusion that you have any practical skill set. At that point, you can fully realize the successful conclusion of just about anything in your past was the result either of blind staggering luck or the fact that whatever it was probably wasn't that hard.

I've accepted this, and, in fact, wear it as a badge of honor. It's sort of my super power. That, and impatience, which makes me sort of a duel threat. Like Superman being really strong and also able to fly. Or something like that.

Now, for the most part, I muddle through because, as I said earlier, most things aren't really hard. Lots of engineers spend lots of time making it easy for us to, I don't know, work a microwave or go to the moon. OK, not that the degree of difficulty is the same, but you get the point.

The problem, at least for me, starts when I'm expected to interact with things in such a way as to alter their current operating set in a meaningful and appropriate way. You know, like change the clocks.

The great thing about a lot of modern electronics is that sort of thing is done for you. You wake up Sunday morning, look at your phone or computer and realize the elves who actually operate those devices have magically sprung forward or fallen back.

And we haven't actually reached the level of technical competence around here that all our other devices realize they have to change and do so. Mostly because we're too cheap to buy smart toaster ovens or whatever. And because even if we did, we'd still have to set them up, wouldn't do it right and would have hundreds of things blinking at us all at same time.

Which is why my job (obviously not a hire based on any degree of competency) is to change the clocks.

The microwave and oven deal is pretty easy, mostly because there's a big button on there that says, "clock." Typically with arrows. And other devices usually can be handled by turning them off and then back on again. Or, by plugging your phone into them because apparently a phone is the one device that rules them all.

But just when you've been lulled into a (very) false sense of competence, the Godzilla of Device-Changing rears its head. You have to change the car clock.

In days gone by, when calling someone meant giving your finger the free ride back on the rotary dial, you changed the clock in your car by pushing a little button until the big and little hands lined up the way they were supposed to, more or less.

But now, thanks to technology, you have to hit Display, select the right setting, find the knob on the dash that allows you to advance, take too long, have to start over, hit the wrong button and erase all the numbers in the phone directory you could never get to work, pull out the brick book of an owner's manual, thumb through about 500 of its pages looking for directions, find them only to discover they're for a different model and finally ... give up and either trade the car or decide, what the heck, in a few months the clock will be right again, anyway.

Sooner or later, mostly by luck, you'll manage to hit the right buttons in the right sequence, your clocks will be set and peace will reign. You've done your bit.

However, there is one small thing. Seems you're also supposed to change the batteries in your smoke alarms this time of year as well. And how hard could that be?

Commentary on 11/08/2019

Print Headline: If I could turn back time

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