Joe Pisani (opinion): Why does it take so much time to turn back the clock?

This artwork by M. Ryder relates to Daylight Saving Time.

This artwork by M. Ryder relates to Daylight Saving Time.

M. Ryder

When it comes to technology, I consider myself smarter than the average geezer, which means to say I can turn on the computer. And I can turn it off too.

I know the ins and outs of my iPad. Well, maybe just the ins. I’m working on the outs.

And after reading and rereading my direction manual, I mastered a “web-based virtual learning environment” called Blackboard — I bet you don’t know what that is and don’t care. It’s a system that lets me teach remotely, although I’ve come to the conclusion that teaching in person is better than talking to a blank computer screen.

I also know how to change the ribbon — I mean the ink cartridge — on my printer.

But there’s one thing I haven’t mastered and may never in the time I have left, and that’s changing the car clock when daylight saving time rolls around.

I have a possible solution, but it will cost me time and money. I could run for Congress on the Contrarian Party ticket, and once I get elected, I’ll sponsor the Sunshine Protection Act so that daylight saving time can last all year long. (Wait a minute. The Senate already tried that, but the bill stalled in the House.)

To tell the truth, I don’t want daylight saving time to be forever. I want standard time to be forever because I prefer light in the morning, just like my neighbors, who would love to start blowing their leaves at 6 a.m.

Every year after daylight saving time arrives, I don’t get around to changing the car clock until New Year’s or spring break, when I have spare time to sit down and read the owner’s manual.

I’m convinced members of the Zoomer generation, who are always looking for easy jobs where they can work remotely, could make a few extra bucks to buy cannabis by changing car clocks for Boomers, who don’t have the faintest idea what those dials and icons on the center console mean.                         

What happened to the good ole days when all you had to do to set the clock was pull out the pin and rotate the hands? In 2023, we have to resolve to make things simpler, not complexer. (I mean more complex.)

This year, I paid for my ignorance. I had a doctor’s appointment at 8:30 a.m. and got there an hour early because I didn’t set the clocks back.

When I arrived, the building was closed so I started pounding on the door … until I realized, “Uh oh, I goofed.”

However, I took advantage of the situation and went back to the car and did the one thing I hate doing more than filing my income tax returns. I took out the 800-page owner’s manual and got to work. Needless to say, it would have been easier reading “Anna Karenina,” which has the same number of pages and a lot of Russian names.

It took me a few minutes to find the right manual because there were three in the glove compartment, and none seemed to have the directions I needed. In the future, car manufacturers should put them on the inside cover so you don’t have to search.

You’d think this operation would be easy-peasy, but it wasn’t. To reset the clock, I had to read and reread almost three pages. Once I found the directions for “clock adjustment,” I turned to Page 97 and was immediately sent to Page 139 because before I could learn how to set the clock, I had to take several preliminary steps to access the clock in the maze of confusing icons on the dashboard console.

The manual directed me to the “multi-information display,” where I had to locate an icon that looked like a smiley face. Then, I had to activate the “meter control switches,” which included up and down directional arrows and left to right directional arrows. Then, I had to track down the cursor and press more directional arrows.

When I finished, I was going to take a victory lap around the building until I realized it was time for my appointment.

What’s the moral to the story? As I see it, if you suffer from the same technical disability and don’t know how to set your car clock — or your digital wristwatch or the clocks on your microwave, stove and stereo system — I have a simple solution. Get some duct tape, snip off a few pieces and cover the clocks. Problem solved.

You can pull the tape off when standard time rolls around.

Former Stamford Advocate and Greenwich Time Editor Joe Pisani can be reached at joefpisani@yahoo.com.