For most of us, it’s a predictable (if annoying) routine to reset our watches and clocks for daylight saving time each year. But how much do you really know about the time change, which starts on Sunday, March 13? Read on to find out:
1. It’s daylight saving time, not daylight savings time
While it’s common to hear people say “daylight savings time” or just “daylight savings,” the correct term is “daylight saving time.” There’s a grammatical reason for keeping “saving” singular, but you can also think of it this way: What are you doing during this time? Saving daylight. Thus, daylight saving time.
2. It wasn’t invented by Ben Franklin
“The biggest misconception is that it was Ben Franklin’s idea,” says Peter Geiger, editor of the Farmers’ Almanac. While Franklin is often credited with inventing the concept of daylight saving time as we know it, he merely suggested that Parisians wake up earlier to save money on lamp oil and candles in a satirical essay published in the Journal de Paris in 1784.
3. It wasn’t implemented for farmers, either
Another misconception? That the practice originated to benefit farmers. In fact, the agricultural industry lobbied against daylight saving time after it was introduced in the United States. Many farmers continue to oppose the practice, which can disrupt farmwork. For example, dairy cows expect to be milked at the same hour each day — regardless of what the clock says.