Daylight Saving Time started Sunday: Spring ahead

Benjamin Franklin urged us to be “early to bed, early to rise” so it’s no surprise he’s the busybody behind Daylight Saving Time.

Franklin proposed the idea in 1784 during his ambassadorship to France as a satirical comment on the Parisian tendency to sleep until noon.

The joke caught on. The U.S. adopted Daylight Saving Time after World War I, as a way to take better advantage of daylight hours and save money on illumination.

Does it still save energy? Ask that question when you’re trying to drag yourself out of bed an hour earlier Sunday morning.

We jumped to Daylight Saving Time at 2 a.m. Sunday, when the clocks moved ahead an hour, except in Arizona and Hawaii, where the clocks stayed right where they were.

Why? Hawaii is so close to the equator that the seasonal variation in the length of daylight hours is small. In Arizona, the retirees don’t want you tell them to change anything.

A few facts about Daylight Saving (no 's’) Time demonstrate that Arizona may have a point:

- Pedestrian deaths increase in November on the first night after Daylight Saving Time ends, likely because drivers find it suddenly darker at 6 p.m., and harder to see pedestrians.

- Daylight Saving Time used to end in October. In 2007, aware that child pedestrian deaths peak on Halloween, and with the encouragement of the candy industry, lawmakers extended it to the first Sunday in November, to give little goblins more light in the early evening.

- To decode the time signifiers that follow national news stories, remember that in the summer Eastern Standard Time (EST) becomes Eastern Daylight Time (EDT), Pacific Standard Time (PST) becomes Pacific Daylight Time (PDT), and so on.

- Eastern Daylight Time extends from the second Sunday in March to the first Sunday in November. Lonesome Standard Time, according to country singer Larry Cordle, begins from the first moment your old heart broke.