America should have two time-zones

But for the last three years I lived in a state of constant confusion, I rarely knew the time and was perpetually an hour late or early.

Here’s the real problem. Ms. Schrager was confused by her clock, and we can’t have that. Instead, the rest of us should adopt enormous lifestyle changes, because we can’t let her be inconvenienced.

Also, what’s television?


Nonsense, we should have MORE time zones, you know how many time zones they have in Russia? NINE!

Now, it’s true the Soviets had eleven time zones, so clearly the gap has closed somewhat since the cold war, but we could easily split each of the current continental US time zones and close this all important “time zone gap” even more. Forcibly annexing Nova Scotia and Newfoundland might also help, the future of the free world depends on it!


Except that “call me at 3:00” won’t mean that. Because what you really mean is “call me in the middle of my workday afternoon”, which will not be at 3:00 for one of you. So you’ll still have to figure out what the difference is between your workday and theirs so you know whether 3:00 will be in the middle of their afternoon or the middle of their lunch hour. And eventually what’s going to happen is everyone’s going to switch back to timezones anyway as they note what the difference between GMT and each office’s standard workday is and automatically add/subtract that to figure out what times at that office correspond to what times during their own workday (the West Coast office might begin their workday at 1600 GMT, but the East Coast office starts at 1300 GMT so you have to remember to subtract 3 hours from West Coast time to match up with the East Coast’s workday).


That’s not too far off from my proposal- synchronize time zones and UTM zones.

A new time zone every 6 degrees longitude would unleash worldwide befuddlement and endless pointless discussions about how to tell what the time is somewhere else, usually involving things like

It’s the only time standard that would be supported by math. Plus it would be both absurd and sublime.

Eastern Standard Tribe?? Pfft.

17 North Represent!


As a computer programmer, all I can say is fuck time zones, leap years, leap seconds, daylight savings time, and AM/PM. Handling date and time correctly if you don’t have some massive library to link against is a nightmare. For example, if you think leap years are easy, you’re totally wrong. People who thought leap years were easy screwed up the earliest spreadsheets, and to this day Excel does not handle dates correctly.

Even if you do have a library, there’s a lot that can still go wrong. People have no idea if noon is AM or PM, they set their timezone to GMT but their clocks to local time, they freak out when they look back at September of 1752, and so on.


If you think this would result in enormous lifestyle changes, instead of no lifestyle changes at all, you’re clearly confused about how clocks work.

On the other hand, if enough people share that confusion, I guess enormous lifestyle changes WOULD probably occur… A self fulfilling prophecy.


I really got the impression this was a victim of the “this is good for me and the people I know, therefore it’s good for everyone” syndrome. And her argument was, of course, backed up by her personal experiences - in Austin and New York, as if everyone in the whole time zone was represented by the schedules of the people she was aware of there. (And even if it was accurate, hey, maybe small towns and places outside New York on the East coast don’t hold to New York hours. And maybe the differences in eating and working schedules in New York and Austin had nothing to do with Austinites living on New York time. Because seriously, what percentage of the population needs to do business with New York, or flies frequently back and forth from there? I’m going to guess: not much.)


No, no, the whole point is to have everyone working at the same time. Since New York is the important place, we’d all be living our lives according to what the middle of the day was in New York, even if that’s the middle of the night for you locally. Easy! Why are you looking at me like that? Think of the economic benefits!


If you’re going to get rid of one time zone, just get rid of them all. Use UTC and be done with it… the only “inconvenience” is that most of the planet has to get used to waking up with some other number on their clock than they do now.

Star Trek solved it with stardates, we could try that out too!


I do a lot of development on reports, and you forget to label one column in the output and now you can’t tell what kind of data you are looking at, how it compares to this other report over here, and all this other nonsense just because of a missing “UTC” or something. Date/time math is a real PITA.


I remember the time when a big watch company tried to institute one time zone. How far did that fly?


I spent a few months traveling in China where there is(was? it was a decade ago) one official timezone, Beijing time. Everything else is on an ultra-local time which was oftentimes a very arbitrary choice. One big plus of having definitive zones is actually knowing what time it is somewhere else. Transportation is a nightmare if you have no idea what someone else’s local frame of reference is. Similarly if it was left to some local authority to set the time to true solar noon, who’s to say they won’t get it wrong and really confuse the shit out of someone who might only live 1 or 2 towns over. Communities aren’t self-contained anymore.



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  1. Daylight saving time, not “savings”!
  2. There are more than 24 time zones. I count 40 but I may be off by a few (offset from GMT, excluding DST). Many places are not offset by whole one-hour increments (one example: we have GMT+5, +5:30 and +5:45).
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2 things slightly contradictory

Keep daylight saving time and get rid of the other one

Make it the same time throughout the whole world. Inother words if it is 3 pm in shanghai it is 3 pm in London

It sounds like you’re saying the time changes were instituted to help big business in the first place, and I’m already inconvenienced, so I should shut the f*&# up.

In accordance with all the other false dualities in American life, the two timezones should be named Red and Blue.



Off topic, really - but this was what prompted Einstein to think about time itself and this train of thought eventually culmilated in the concept of spacetime and the theories of relativity.


Simple answer - get rid of all timezones - adopt GMT, change what time of day you work to suit

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True. A life organized around the TV schedule is not a life worth living.