As soon as the summer solstice was over, our days started getting shorter and shorter. I know, I don’t like to think about it either. But still, the darkness crept a little more every day, and as soon as Daylight Savings Time ended, there was no denying it: it’s dark. Really, really dark. Most of the time, even. If you live below the 40th parallel it isn’t so-so bad, but it’s pretty damn dusky where I live, in New York (way, way in New York though. It’s like Baby Canada up here).
I know the end of Daylight Savings doesn’t actually make an hour go away from my day. However, an hour of precious daylight moved from the afternoon – when I could maybe do something with it – to the morning, when the only benefit is that I can now do my makeup in natural light. Still, there is a sunny side (even if it only lasts about 5 hours day):
Days aren’t shorter – nights are longer. If you’re into that.
If your glass is half full (of crazy), then you probably don’t look at this as losing daylight, but gaining night. Maybe you like the horrible mysterious blackness closing all around you. Maybe you just think it’s cozy to spend your dark winter hours indoors, with fires or candles – because you’re probably a bit of a pyro, too. I’m guessing you’re also really confident walking through darkened parking lots and waiting for your bus on an unlit street corner. So, you’re probably really jazzed to gain even more night! You freak.
We gained an hour of sleep! One time.
In exchange for that extra hour of sleep, you will be in total darkness before the 5 o’clock news from now until March. So, hope you liked your sleep that one day! You know that psychology experiment where they tell kids they can have one piece of candy right now, or 2 pieces of candy if they wait until the researcher comes back in the room? And they always pick the one piece of candy right now? I’m usually Team Adults, but I don’t think we’re any better. If you asked me, at 6am on a Monday, if I want an extra hour to stay in bed – knowing that I’d never leave work in the daylight again for months – I’d probably be like “yeah, sounds like a fair exchange!” This is why we shouldn’t let sleepy people make major decisions.
It’s an excuse not to work out.
Let’s just say that some people work out because they like the results, like being able to lift objects, looking like they’re not in frail physical shambles, and whatever those “health benefits” are supposed to be. But, these same people sometimes find the whole process a bit of a hassle. I’m that person. Enter total darkness during all of my waking hours. That does it! Note: you still have to go to the gym, this only works for outdoor exercise. Sorry.
You Aren’t Getting Sun Damage?
Someday, when we all have horribly eroded skin, we’ll look back at these dark months with fondness as That Time We Weren’t Working On Our UV Exposure. When those fine lines crop up, just remember – that’s the price you had to pay for summer. The November-to-March perma-night had nothing to do with it.
You Can Wear Whatever You Want Because Nobody Can See You
You call it winter, I call it a really low-magic version of the Invisibility Cloak. Those people you run into outside for most of the winter? They can’t even see you! Or, you know, they can’t make out the details, anyway. So, if you’re wearing two shades of black that don’t quite match, or scuffy shoes, or mismatched accessories, nobody will know (except for maybe people you see indoors).
It’s Pajama Time When You Say It’s Pajama Time
If you get home, don’t really have anything going on that day, and want to change into pajamas as soon as you finish dinner (or before), that’s fine. Because it’s dark out! So, it’s nighttime! I definitely abuse this one sometimes. Think about it: if you pajama up at 7:00 in the summer, you’d have to be sick, pathetic, depressed, or all three. But in winter, when it’s already been dark for three hours, you’re just keeping it comfy!
You Feel Like A Productive Workaholic Even When You’re … Not
Yesterday, I got to work at 8 and left around 5:30. Pretty normal, right? Except by leaving under cover of darkness, I felt like I had put in a serious day at the office. If I’m being honest, I could have stayed ’til 10 and still only been half done with my work. The thing is, downtown seems spookier with the lights off – so you’ll forgive me for emailing some files to myself and finishing my work in my pajamas. Which I changed into at 7 pm. Because it’s not like I was going for a run. Welcome, winter!