186) Fall Back For More Daylight

November 3, 2007

Morning @ Home: There is no soccer today! They played last night and Shayna SCORED!!! And, Kick Kats won, 8 to 0! Shayna's score came on her third try; two of which were from corner kicks by Kiki, where Kiki sent the corner kick into the area in front of the goal. On the score, Shayna wrestled with about three defenders and slid the kick through them and past the goalie. She immediately threw up her arms and ran outa the goal cheering. All of us on the sidelines who'd watched her miss those last three tries, yelled too. Shayna said on our walk to the field t
hat she likes playing night games... so I guess we need more of them. So today is a lazy house day so far: reading the paper, making pancakes, and finally calling Phyllis the Nurse to find out what time I can come in today. Anytime is fine for me today, since UT is playing on ABC @ 2:30. Phyllis gives me a 1:30 time.

El Milagro: I’m a little late and walk in quickly to find my favorite corner chair waiting for me. I sit for awhile watching the staff hurriedly rush around doing their jobs until Rosie the Tech comes over to hook me up… and I have forgotten my weight, so I have to go back out to the weighting room to see what I wrote down on the weight chart. “73.8… 73.8… 73.8… 73.8” I say to my ADD self over and over as I walk back to the corner and then Rosie is off adjusting someone else. Soon she returns and I hav
e remembered and I say assuredly “73.8”. She quickly cannulates me and takes off to do something else, while Phyllis the Nurse comes over to measure my vitals and hear my chest. No comments today about puffy face or ankles. Today the guys in the place are waiting for the UT / OSU game, which will be starting in about 40 minutes. I look around and about 7 or 8 TV’s are tuned into ABC, which is showing the ESPN games today. In the paper this morning it seems like most people think OSU will beat UT. Even the ESPN commentator picks the Cowboys.

My machine’s beeper goes off and Phyllis comes over and guesses that Rosie was so quick that she didn’t check the venous needle good enough and it needs to be turned to get it off the side of the vein, which will make the machine happier. It goes off again and Monica the Nurse comes by to push the ‘stop beeping button’. She too says Rosie should come back and re-adjust… and moves off to do something else. Herman the Nurse is the only one of their ilk who’ll actually mess with the poking of people, it seems. Rosie comes by pretty soon and just glances over and the machine hasn’t beeped again and I don’t call her over to give me a little PAIN as she adjusts the needles… and so it goes.

As I watch all the pre-game TV hoopla I think about the fall season and the upcoming time change tonight. I think it is funny that the time change is one of those things that the society still does, even though scientists now know that it is not healthy for people. We started this daylight savings time (DST) thing with an idea of economical savings written in an essay by Ben Franklin in 1784.* The first DST law was enacted in the US in 1918 and made into a uniform application in 1966. These laws have been revised in ’72, ’86, and ’05, even though there has been mounting evidence since the early ‘70’s that DST is actually unhealthy for human beings. According to Rick Weiss** “Artificial illumination is fooling the body's biological clock into releasing key wakefulness hormones at the wrong times, contributing to seasonal fatigue and depression. And daylight saving time, extended by Congress this year for an extra four weeks, risks dragging even more Americans into a winter funk.” This is not good. Scientists in a number of fields of study (not dissimilar to the scientists who announced the difficulities of global warming years ago) have produced empirical studies that show that from the psychiatric perspective extending daylight is a bad decision because it inevitably leads to more depr
ession, mood disorders, seasonal affective disorders (SAD), and perhaps even an increase in seizures (related to fluorescent flicker). "WOW", I think to myself as I contemplate all this.

Dave Crawford from the International Dark-Sky Association*** ponders, "If we sprayed water all over the place here in the desert, we'd be put in jail. So why is it okay to spray light all over the place at night?… More than half of all mammals spend most of their waking hours at night or twilight, including teenagers. Light is fine -- in the day… We're trying to bring to everyone's attention that there is a night." I personally have always loved the dark sky.
My memories take me back to standing on a mesa overlooking the Pecos River outside of Rowe, NM in the middle of the night. The air is brisk to the point of chill on my blanket and I stand there wishing I’d put on my pants, looking out over the Pecos valley below, with the broad expanse of the universe above the sharp whip of winds. Looking up, the sky is so deep and star-filled that I can see vast rivers of stars so thick they almost look like sparkle clouds… reminiscent of Van Gogh’s Starry Night. Standing there became a life-long memory that I can bring to the fore even today and it is probably 35 years later. I believe this is the sky we should try to protect. When John and Katie were kids I took them camping up in the Lincoln Forest. They too saw those New Mexico skies and I hope those are life-long memories for them.

Okay… so now it is time for the UT game. I get all ready and line up my dum dum lollipops that Shayna gave me from her Halloween take. “Oh Boy”. Texas kicks off to OSU and they march right down the field and score. Then UT gets the ball and on the first play Colt falls back to flip a short pass out to Nate Jones and it goes over his head into the arms of a happy Cowboy who runs it in for a score… 14 zip against us. “$s%>!!” What a bad start. It gets worse. By half time we are down 28 – 14. What a lousy showing. Kurt Bohls and the announcer guy from ESPN who said Texas would loose are right! We can’t beat these guys. What a miserable day. I snooze through halftime, trying to lower my raising BP.
The third quarter comes and I watch them score again and we are down 21 points again. I’m having a sad time here today… but I keep watching. Then in the fourth quarter that boy McCoy decides to run it himself… for 17 yards. That’s a lift. Then Texas moves down the field from the 5 and Charles dashes 75 yards for a TD. And then Colt passes to Shipley for a 60 yard run and with two minutes left we’re tied at 35! We’re back in it and now I just know we’ll win, having caught up 21 points for the second time in this game. With a minute left our soccer boy, Ryan Bailey kicks a field goal and WE WIN, 38 to 35. Do I feel sorry for those OSU fans who were so delirious in the third quarter? Nope. I feel just great and it is a good day today. I leave dialysis feeling just fine… and go home and take a long nap.

Notes: In at 73.8 Kgs. and out at 72.1 Kgs.
* Douma, M. (nd) Daylight savings time. Webexhibit. Retrieved online November 2007 from the Webexhibits website, (a public service of the Institute for Dynamic Educational Advancement [IDEA]), at http://webexhibits.org/daylightsaving/

** Weis, R. (2007, October 30) Seeing the light of day. Washington Post. Retrieved November 2007 from http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/10/26/AR2007102602479.html?nav=emailpage

*** International Dark-sky Association available on the web at http://www.darksky.org/

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