Open thread

by Grace aka costofcollege

We have an open thread today, but first a question.  Do you feel a need to bust out of your rut?

101 Rut-Busting Things to Do This Weekend
Tired of same-old Saturdays and dismal Sundays? From real-estate adventures to pet-related impetuousness, this list of suggestions will shake up your downtime. Bonus: Try the Random Idea Generator

Okay, most are outlandish and silly, but some got me thinking.  Coding, open houses, blindfolds . . .

Anything on the list catch your fancy?  Or do you have something else you’ve been thinking about doing to shake up your life a little?  Or maybe some of you are too busy juggling the basic functions of family life to even think about anything else now.

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113 thoughts on “Open thread

  1. I can’t say any of those suggestions grab me, but it does remind me that I should check Westword (the Denver weekly) more often for ideas about what to do on the weekends.

  2. Given that someone has obligations at 9-11, 11:30-1, 1-3 and 3-~5 on Saturday then 9-1 and 1-5 and I’m flying solo, I clearly fall into the juggling category.

  3. That’s missing an “l” for the show, Rhett. Also, have you seen the video, “It’s Not Porn — It’s HBO”? Very apropos. It’s on YouTube.

  4. The thread on Sunday routines depressed me to death, and now I will be depressed all over again if I read this. I have stacks of potential hobbies lined up, including a beautiful hurdy gurdy I want to play, and a fancy camera that has been barely used in 2 years.

  5. So the rest of you don’t do all that in a typical weekend?

    I’ve already dealt with the winter coat pockets but have to unearth the mittens and hats. Also, I always call my mother and love pumpkin spice. This should surprise no one.

    In other news, I realized that the week of Thanksgiving I am hosting three holiday dinners (for 25, 10, and 20 people) and a birthday party for 15 kids (at home and it involves multiple science projects and a homemade gluten-free nut-free cake). In the space of six days.

    Two out of three holiday dinners must have vegan and gluten free options, but the majority of the guests do not want vegan or gluten free food.

    If you see a mom wandering the suburbs muttering about spatchcocked turkeys, rice flour, and elephant toothpaste, that will be me. Stop and say hello :)

  6. “Precious”. BTW, I was stymied by the paywall until I backed into the article via someone’s twitter link that came up early in the google listing. The suggestion near the bottom of the list, shop for a vintage watch, is not for the faint of heart.

    Definitely trying to avoid early retirement rut. Winter has much less variety than summer for me, and half of my friends are snowbirds and gone. We are no longer going Manhattan each year – we have seen in person most of the operas on our list, and I am redirecting some of my discretionary dollars. Current new activity is signing up for more university related lectures/symposia (free or near free). I don’t give a lot of money, but it is enough that I don’t feel a need to give more. These will also get routine after a while, but should get me through a couple of winters. DH is taking a 10 day trip without me after txgiving, that is also a new wrinkle – haven’t figured out what I might do then.

  7. Current new activity is signing up for more university related lectures/symposia (free or near free).

    I really want to do that too, but it’s hard for me to find the listings of the local universities’ offerings. And you’d think I’d know where to look given how much time I spent hanging around universities.

  8. RMS – I would just check the website. Most have a calendar with various lectures, etc.

    My dad is visiting right now and he was saying he wanted to get my older two kids into golf, so DH suggested we go to Top Golf tonight. Dh has already been for a work event, but the rest of us have never visited so that’s something new and different. My oldest has her last soccer game tomorrow and she is trying out basketball this winter for the first time, so I’m planning on grabbing a basketball and heading to the ES and practicing with her on Sunday.

    We have no kitchen right now so we’ve tried out a few new restaurants lately, while also putting together meals from the grill/toaster oven and Instant pot.

    Last night DH and I went to a wine tasting (which we have admittedly done before but not for a while) and DS was asking me where we were going and after telling him, he said in complete disbelief “You already know what wine tastes like!”

  9. Yeah, I just get lazy checking all the calendars. Actually, DH would love this one:
    Seafaring: an early medieval conference on the islands of the North Atlantic. Three-day thing, ends tomorrow.

  10. I am in a rut and these are not the things that will get me out. ‘nuf said.

    Sky, careful, or you will turn into a nut cake! If the birthday invitees are young enough, they won’t mind a few mishaps. At my son’s 8-yr-old Mad Scientist party, the mentos Coke was faster than I expected and soaked me. I changed clothes and launched into making ice cream out of dry ice. There is a (now hilarious) serious of photos of everyone’s reactions as it bubbled over. Still my kid’s favorite memory of the whole day!

  11. RMS, a bunch of folks in stranded in the landlocked Rockies, dreaming of being adrift at sea. Hahaha

  12. I need to take down the cemetery and all the other Halloween stuff. And the cages are overdue for a cleaning. Plus, laundry!

  13. @ Finn – From the other thread, yes I now feel like I can die happy. Just walked down to the Championship parade from the office & watched the buses go by. Unbelievable. I never thought that I would live to see this day! Today is complete mayhem downtown. I do not have the stamina to stand around Grant Park for hours upon hours for the rally though, so I’ll just watch that on TV later.

    @ Meme – when I retire, I would like to have memberships to some of the local museums and go to their lectures and special events in the winter. There are some really interesting ones, but 6pm on a Tuesday night is not ideal for parents with kids at home. I do think that they are really geared towards retirees and empty nesters.

  14. Mémé, you could go to the next Farm Progress show, whenever it is. They used to be less frequent than every year and they just held one in September. I don’t know when the next one is. It would expand your horizons- maybe your DH could listen to my Dad talk about how farming has changed.

  15. Let’s see, yesterday’s venture into the world of new and different was Kaiser urgent care, thanks to what turned out to be DS’ first broken bone (recess soccer + goalie + enthusiastic ball-kicking = suboptimal combination). All fine, just a little metal finger split. Oh, and then there’s the quote to repair the Mustang, thanks to the speed humps that detached the little plastic underplate (“you can drive over them at the speed limit” my ass. Sure you can — you just might not come down the other side with your car in one piece). Happy happy joy joy.

    Bitching aside, this isn’t really the “rut” time of year — between cooler fall weather and Halloween and birthdays and then the rapid transition to T-day/Hanukkah/Christmas, October-December seem to fly by. Talk to me about ruts in mid-January, when all my football teams are out of the running and Louisville BBall is on sanctions and all the movies they release at the end of the year are played out and it has been cold and dreary for weeks straight.

    But HM just reminded me I need to do laundry, so there’s that.

  16. RMS – my choices are less academic in focus and of shorter duration – usually just a half day – and I can take the bus. One can subscribe to a monthly newsletter in the inbox, check it and mark tentative stuff on the e calendar, and then ignore it or attend. I find that helps me with the random things that turn up during the month – I can choose to meet a friend either on Wed and Th of week 3 based on whether I might want to go to lecture A on one of those days. And sometimes it is not the actual attendance that perks me up, but just the act of marking it down as tentative rather than just scanning the list and filing it away in the back of the brain – it helps me realize that I do have options every time I check the calendar, which is daily. It is not guilt inducing for me if I don’t choose to go (that task is delegated to the ever growing pile of ironing and mending). YMMV.

    I am fully booked the next two weekends with various stuff, but Dr Strange is on my short list after Nov 14. I bought a reissued hardcover compilation of the first couple of years (mid 60s) and am looking forward to reading them. I was hardcore early Marvel in the 1960s. And I am fan of Cumberbatch – he got good reviews in this. And a little trippiness (visual only at my age) may be in order after next Tuesday.

  17. DD#2 at band competition today (bus left school at 5:15 am, she had to be therer 30 min prior), then football game, then back to band competition on mid-morning tomorrow. DD#1 nothing scheduled this weekend (very unusual). I am trying a new tai chi class at 11 followed by a scout volunteer meeting at 1. Last weekend from Thursday-Monday was go, go, go, go. I need to spend Sunday catching up on a non-scout volunteer project that I am WAY behind on.

  18. Ivy – It is only 12 years ago that we had the same euphoria here in Boston (I have been a weekend season ticket holder for 30 years). My very first baseball game was at Wrigley with my aunt at 10 or so. My second was at Fenway as a young woman. So I am completely old school about ball parks. Congratulations. Joe Madden nearly threw it away by overusing Chapman in game 6. Tito Francona made caviar out of cabbage for a month with brilliant managing, but talent won out in the end. Very exciting series.

  19. Mémé – the boston athenaeum yearly subscription is, i think, very reasonable and they have very nice programs, many of them in the afternoons. and their reading room is the best place to just be. the location might be tough, except if you have easy access to public transportation to boston when you wanted to go.

  20. We are in a delightful lull at the moment. Summer is so busy (enjoyable, but busy), then back to school is busy. Right now we have no weekend sports, so other than my self-imposed chores to help get the week organized, there’s nothing we have to do. That changes in a couple of weeks, as holidays and winter sports kick off. I’m enjoying this quieter period while I can.

    DH and I are seriously talking about returning to Chapel Hill for retirement, because we would love to audit classes, go to basketball games, etc. Especially if we have a small place right on the bus line.

  21. Meme – I think we will also have to wait a couple of weeks to see Dr. Strange. I love Cumberbatch! (although can’t find the meme generator right now that gives you different iterations of his name every time). :)

  22. @ Meme – I could have done with a little less excitement maybe, but it couldn’t have happened any other way I suppose than an extra innings Game 7 with a goofy rain delay at the end. Lots of memories made over the last month.

  23. “I think we will also have to wait a couple of weeks to see Dr. Strange.”

    As if that is even an option in this family — I have already bought Sunday IMAX tix, because I am a good wife and mommy. :-)

  24. Ivy, best post about it I’ve seen was something like “It’s fitting that a 100+ year drought should end with a rain delay”. To me, dragging out the suspense seems a lot more fitting for a WS than easy shut-outs.

  25. We have to take down Halloween, and I need to do work for my volunteer position.

    Though some of these ideas are fun, most I do already. I guess that means I’m not in a rut?

    I plan on sleeping – I’ve been flat out at work all week and just need to sleep in one day, DH is more than happy to accommodate, especially since Demon Boy doesn’t like mommy right now. Depending on weather, maybe we’ll go to the botanical gardens or the zoo. I don’t like to waste sunny warmish days because they are fleeting.

  26. Thanks special librarian. I took a look at the Nov calendar and the programs are scheduled more to the neighborhood, as is appropriate. (Family membership comes with a card for the nanny.) Adult lectures mostly at 6pm, but there are 2 at noon in nov. I’ll keep an eye on the topics. I use public transit all the time, senior citizen rates now, so that is not an issue.

  27. “And sometimes it is not the actual attendance that perks me up, but just the act of marking it down as tentative rather than just scanning the list and filing it away in the back of the brain “

    I’ve gotten into the habit of adding things to my calendar with a “MAYBE” note, just to alert me about the options I have. It both perks me up and helps me get organized about actually participating in some of the activities.

    Earlier today I was out hiking, enjoying the beautiful fall colors, so following through on getting out of my rut.

  28. We are still in fall sports season which should be done soon. Kids and myself are used to downtime during the winter (Dec/Jan) so I try not to schedule any additional things then. I had to decline a winter league team invite because it was getting to be a bit much.

    Sky – I would have loved to help you ! I dont mind sharing duties as I find doing the prep work with other people means we talk while we work and time passes quickly. If I am by myself the list of things to be done makes it no fun.

    Once my first kid is off to college, I anticipate having more time to do things spontaneously vs. on a schedule

  29. Rhett, when we were returning from Japan I noticed that one of the announcements important enough to be made in English AND Japanese AND Chinese was the ‘if you have a Samsung Note 7 anywhere on this plane let us know immediately! it cannot fly!”

  30. By Chinese I really mean Mandarin; they weren’t doing announcements in Cantonese anywhere. Tons of Mandarin-speaking Chinese tourists in Japan these days though.

  31. On routines, I have become irritated with my house and all the items in it. I long to have it demolished and wake up in one of Rhett’s favored pristine white houses where there is nothing out of place and it is sparkling new.

  32. ‘if you have a Samsung Note 7 anywhere on this plane let us know immediately! it cannot fly!”

    They do it on all domestic flights as well. I can’t imagine how much of marketing disaster it is for millions of people a day to hear that worldwide.

  33. i thought both of these articles were interesting because we’ve discussed the U of Alabama many times here, and now the NYT has shed some more light on some of our discussions about that school and the other public universities.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/06/education/edlife/survival-strategies-for-public-universities.html?_r=0

    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/11/06/education/edlife/college-budgets-affect-your-education-but-its-not-all-bad-news.html?ref=edlife

  34. From the Alabama article:

    “I hate very much to use this analogy, but it’s like running a business,” Dr. Whitaker said.

    No, it’s not like running a business. It is running a business.

  35. HM, did you have an enjoyable trip? Did your family get to compare/contrast the two different types of okonomiyaki?

  36. Finn, it was a great trip! We didn’t compare / contrast okonomiyaki, but we did eat a lot of great food. You just can’t get a bad meal in Japan. My favorite food experience may have been the Oedo Onsen Monogatari, which was very uncrowded for our weekday visit and had apparently collected all the best examples of favorite types of foods for the little food stalls in the fake festival — the whole place is like a Bon Dance crossed with a public bath, as brought to you by Disney — so you had your ramen place, your sushi place, your izakaya, your yakitori, your Harajuku-chain crepes, and so on and so on, and whatever you tried there was no line and it was amazing. Payment was by swiping the bar code on your wristband since everyone was in yukata, so it was truly painful when they added it all up at checkout.

    BTW, MooshiMooshi’s kids would love the Studio Ghibli museum.

  37. Ivy – Did Ferris Bueller and his friends participate in the Cubs parade? I thought it would be fun if they reprised Danke Shoen (sp?) and Twist and Shout!

  38. Lauren, that NYT article about UA (RT) captures what I’ve been seeing a lot of recently. On CC, I’ve read posts from a whole bunch of NMSF and NMSF parents chasing merit aid, and UA (RT) appears to have a comfortable lead on the rest of the field of schools using merit aid, as well as Honors Colleges (only briefly mentioned in the article, but a big draw for many of the NMSF) to increase their academic profiles.

    DS knows a CO16 NMSF from here who went to UA (RT), probably in large part due to very generous merit aid.

  39. Now that it’s after 4pm, can we agree that on days like today, with open threads, it’s OK to not wait until 4pm to hijack the thread?

  40. Finn, where I live, the “A” school that’s popular with strong students is Barrett Honors College at Arizona State. I think Alabama is perceived to be too much culture shock

    And since it’s past tangent time, we had over 12″ of rain in October without a soccer game or practice being canceled. Go my washer!

  41. Here, students who don’t get into the state flagship definitely consider University of South Carolina or University of Alabama. I *think* in addition to the merit aid, the students and parents would rather have the bigger university with its alumni connections than a second tier UNC.
    For us, both these universities have regional name recognition. The culture and the weather at these universities are familiar to the students from here.
    The recruiting efforts and the push to improve their standings is having an impact. I think ten years ago “good” students would never have considered going to these “football” schools.

    WCE – keeping my fingers crossed but this year was dry and beautiful fall weather (after Hurricane Matthew) and only one game cancellation so far.

  42. Finn

    For someone who is so precise about language use, what exactly do you think is meant by the term “open thread”? By definition it can’t be hijacked. The article is merely a suggestion to get things started.

  43. I think the culture/fit might be a concern for some kids. It is nice to save that much money, but it might be a big adjustment for some kids. My friend from LA has a daughter that selected a college in Chicago. She hates living there. She doesn’t seem to be able to get past the cold temps, and she is counting the days until she can move back to California.

  44. Lauren — Thanks again for the appliance store recommendation. I just had my new dryer installed, and the whole process was a good experience from start to finish. The installation took less than 30 minutes, and the very efficient installer left me his card and told me to contact him with any follow up problems/questions. The salesperson was extremely courteous and knowledgeable.

    Regarding the exploding Samsung washers, I may have dodged a bullet because two Samsung dryers were on my short list when I was shopping but I bought another brand.

    Yes, open threads mean you can bring up any topic at any time.

  45. Sure. I’m glad it all worked out. I just find their installers to be slightly better than the random guy from the large appliance stores.

  46. On the Alabama article, he makes a good point about bringing in kids one year brings in more in subsequent years. Alabama was on my daughter’s list because a friend a year or two older went there and loved it. She ended up choosing another out of state flagship that offered her a bigger scholarship, but Alabama was fairly high on her list. Like Louise said, a lot of kids would rather go to an out of state flagship than an in-state second tier school. My daughter has now changed schools enough that I think the school matters much less than what they put into it, and that cost should absolutely be a major component of the decision. They can be just as happy at a 3rd choice as first choice if they jump in and commit to making it work.

  47. S&M, a university is a business. You need to generate enough revenue to cover expenses. A state U isn’t trying to make make money like the University of Phoenix and such, but it is still a business.

  48. I wish the universities could be taxed as a business. Property taxes are a large source of revenue in NY state, but these schools are exempt since their non profits. This would be a big help to many homeowners in upstate NY because the colleges and universities do not pay their fair share of taxes. I’m sure they will argue that they create jobs, but so do the other “businesses” that are not exempt from taxes.

  49. DD, yes, expenses need to be covered, but still, universities do not (or should not) exist in order to generate profits the way novelty toy manufacturers do.

  50. Lauren, universities are non profits. Do we usually tax nonprofits? The same argument could be made about nonprofit hospitals and churches. Taxing the dioceses would help homeowners too.

  51. “Do we usually tax nonprofits? The same argument could be made about nonprofit hospitals and churches. ”

    Sure, why not tax churches? Some of them are making a lot of people very rich.

  52. I wanted to say that when colleges and universities begin recruiting outside their traditional bases, it does to an extent bring about a sense of unease both with the staff and students. I was in the first batch of actively recruited international students. The college also expanded it’s sports programs so those were a different set of recruits. I think two students stood out that year. A Russian guy who went about campus in a flashy and noisy yellow car who claimed his brother was in the Russian Mafia and a potential NFL draft pick. Students like these were a shock to the quiet leafy campus.

  53. You can tax non-profits, but within days, you might be sorry. Released from the restrictions on the behavior of non-profits, lots of them would go balls-out political, for starters. If you think churches spend too much time telling their congregations how to vote under the current rules, just wait til there are no restrictions at all.

  54. WCE, Barrett and OU were the first two I heard about when I started looking into this, and I still hear a lot of good things about Barrett.

    But in the CC board I read the most, where there are a lot of parents of NMSF and near-NMSF looking for merit aid, UA (RT) seems to easily be the most popular among those actually visited.

  55. S&M, I never said or implied any of that. I was merely pointing out the absurdity of the comment.

  56. Denver, I’m merely pointing out that it isn’t absurd at all, when one considers the priorities a for-profit business (yes, I realize the quote didn’t specify for-profit, but do you really think they meant anything different?) and compares them to the priorities for an institution of higher learning.

  57. S&M, it’s an entity that generates revenue and spends money. That’s the definition of a business.

  58. I’m just saying that some “non profits” are really generating a lot of income. This is a much broader question about the role of some of these institutions including universities, hospitals and religious organizations.

    The other problem is how certain states calculate revenue for certain expenses such as education.

  59. I agree with Lauren that we don’t have a good model for covering the costs of nonprofits. These include additional law enforcement needed for partying college students, additional costs for water/sewer distribution to churches, where that’s not part of the regular bill, payment for the “redundant/priority” electrical power that the grid designers provide to hospitals at no official cost and of course, my favorite, costs associated with untaxed federal land.

  60. I think that the challenge with non-profits is that the difference between some for-profit entities and some non-profit entities is only that the for-profit entities have shareholders to whom fiduciary duties are owed. In many ways, some non-profits look exactly like the for-profit entity except for that fact. So, do we want to be subsidizing those entities? Do we want to subsidize churches? Schools? I come down on the yes side for schools. And on the no side for some of these non-profits that I have seen that have a charitable purpose but really exist to pay the leadership team some $ and provide some marginal service of value. But it is virtually impossible for a person who doesn’t get involved closely with these entities to distinguish between those non-profits who don’t do much and those who do really valuable things that we should encourage. And of course we all have our own judgments about what is valuable charitable work.

  61. I agree with Kate. Non-profits should not be run for a profit, whereas normal businesses are, in fact, required to prioritize $$$ to shareholders. RMS, I hear you on how crazy some churches would get if the restriction on politics were formally lifted. But since the restriction is not enforced, then I think charging them taxes is the (distant) next best thing.

  62. I watched The Crown on Netflix (that’s where the extra hour of sleep went). Awesome.
    The Night Of was great too. Some great content from the streaming services.

  63. Louise (and anyone else who’s seen The Crown): Is The Crown suitable for kids (upper elementary/middle school age)? Even if appropriate, do you think a kid that age (who has an interest in history) would enjoy it?

  64. Is The Crown suitable for kids (upper elementary/middle school age)?

    At this point yes. I don’t know how they are going to handle Charles, Diana and Camilla but thus far nothing unfit for a middle schooler. Although, they do drink and smoke A LOT.

    Even if appropriate, do you think a kid that age (who has an interest in history) would enjoy it?

    Did they like Downton Abbey?

  65. Rhett — I imagine that they aren’t going to get as far as Charles and Diana this season? I think I read that they are planning five seasons after this one. I was wondering if maybe there were some particularly racy scenes between Princess Margaret and Captain Townsend.

  66. NoB – I watched the first few episodes and they were fine to me. As, Rhett mentioned there is a lot of smoking and drinking but the King did die from cancer of the lungs so there’s a lesson against smoking.

    I like to watch British historicals because the Victorian era is tied to the history of the home country. How the conditions in Britain impacted the Empire is interesting. So many of today’s issues are rooted in that era at the end of the Second World War.

  67. Louise, have you read “Old Filth” by Jane Gardam? “Filth” stands for “Failed in London, Try Hong Kong” and is a fictional account of Sir Edward Feathers, a so-called Raj Orphan born in Malaya and sent to the UK for schooling. Hilarious but also lots of historical references. It’s the first of a trilogy that goes back and forth in time, all centered on that character.

  68. I just finished the fifth episode of The Crown. I think it is appropriate for kids, but I was grossed out by the medical stuff. I don’t like blood, so that’s just me.

    I think the smoking is probably accurate because her father, and her sister died young from complications related to heavy smoking.

    I spent at least hour researching The Great Smog of 1952 because I never knew this happened, and I was trying to learn as much as possible. I did the same with other characters such as Peter Townsend, and several relatives. I really like the show, but I enjoy researching the stories that they decide to focus on in each episode.

  69. I did the same with other characters such as Peter Townsend, and several relatives.

    He’s an excellent guitar player. :)

  70. I am really going to miss this show when I finish the episodes, and I am going to reserve a few books at the library to read more about certain characters. I’ve spent a lot of time in London due to work. I’ve been fortunate to visit some of the areas outside of the city, but I really want to go back and see even more of the country.

    On a side note, DH is going to be there next week for work. I created a shopping list for him because there is a significant arb on certain products due to the drop in the pound. As long as the election goes the way that I hope, the rates shouldn’t change too much by next week.

  71. I only watched the first episode of The Monarch but thoroughly enjoyed it. I look forward to further development of the characters and their relationships. The queen and her husband strike me as rather totebaggy monarchs, in contrast to her sister and other characters. Like Lauren, I also like to research while watching. And yeah, I needed to close my eyes during the bloody parts.

  72. So my kid got off to school with no hassle today, rested because we went to bed on time–even after I took a walk once temps had gotten down to the mid 70s. CoC and others who don’t like the end of DST, what has it made harder as a trade-off?I genuinely don’t get it, have seen a complaint or two. They boil down to “help, I’m early for this!” That’s a problem how? I guess if you’re never late/rushed/behind schedule it might be, but I thought only mythical creatures accomplished that all the time.

  73. S&M, as a geographer you should know how much earlier it gets dark up north than it does down there. That’s why a lot of us don’t like the end of DST.

  74. Hated the first Monday off DST when I was working. Always a shock to see that it was dark when I left the office. Now that we live near the western edge of the ET zone where it is dark until nearly 8 in the morning under DST, I kind of like switching back. We were in CT this weekend and it’s so very confusing…back an hour, then back another hour on Sunday, then forward an hour on the way home. Thank goodness for smartphones. We kept asking each other, “But what time is it REALLY?”

  75. Denver, why the grouch tone? Anyway, you’ve introduced a different topic.
    I was asking about the effects of the shift. The effect I see is that people are early for things, which isn’t a problem (is it?)
    You are talking about the choice of when the daylight hours will be. There is a certain amount of daylight. It varies from day to day and place to place. In the winter months, it is shorter. Either it gets dark and light earlier, or both are later. There is no way to have light at both ends of the day in the winter. I’d prefer to have it in the morning, to help wake up. Work and school hours generally long enough that in the North, as you clearly know, it is dark when they are over, regardless of how clocks are set (unless you arrive in total darkness, a couple hours before it gets light).
    Since you (snarkilly) mentioned the greater change in length of day at higher latitudes: Berlin is way further north than Denver. Leaving the archive at 3:30 in the winter, I’d see the beginning of the sunset. In the summer, staying out until daylight is very easy to do, as it comes in the wee hours of the morning.

  76. DST is particularly ridiculous in Alaska – this time of year they are, on average, losing something like 7 minutes of light per day. Any change (extra light in the morning or evening) is gone in a week or two – really no benefit at all, and certainly some hassle.

    The littlest precious child was awake at 5:30a. That has been the story of “fall back” for almost a decade now – some child that takes a week or two to adjust. We’ve never had a really problem with being late, so I don’t see a lot of benefit in the changing of the clocks.

  77. ‘Non-profit’ is a misnomer – none of these organizations are required to fail to make a profit, and in many cases we would hope they do make a profit (hospitals, universities). They are ‘tax-exempt’, which is completely different from the concept of non-profit.

    I HATE how early it gets dark here now, since we are so far east. 6pm last night, pitch black. Depressing.

  78. Ada, wow, I’d forgotten about early-rising children. Mine had to be at elementary school by 8, which always felt early. The first couple weeks of DST were awful every spring. Not just the lateness, but he’d be cranky because of lack of sleep. Sounds like you go through similar in the fall. Ugh. I agree with you on no benefit to changing the clocks. Saw a funny meme this weekend about cutting one end off a blanket, sewing it onto the other end, and calling it longer. I wish they’d choose a setting and just leave it.

  79. We have more light in the morning now, easier to get out of bed and it is light now when school buses make their rounds. It was very bright at 5.30 pm but not so much now. I guess if we didn’t change it would mean getting used to dark mornings for some time. Our winter and the seasonal changes are not drastic.
    When we say “we are freezing” it is around 40 degrees and hasn’t gone below 32 ;-).

  80. “required to fail to make a profit,” No, but it isn’t their primary puropose. At the core, their essence is (or should be) the service they provide; making money is (should be) incidental to the goal of education or health care.

  81. I disagree. The service they provide has been determined to be sufficiently in the public interest, rather than private interest. Whether or not they make a profit is irrelevant to their tax exempt status.

    However, it is desirable, and not incidental, because unlike for-profit entities, they cannot raise money via the issuance of public stock. So they rely on their own profits and investments (or donations) for their ability to reinvest in themselves. Making a profit should be a primary purpose for many of these organizations.

  82. “Making a profit should be a primary purpose for many of these organizations.”
    Wow but I disagree with you there! Can’t quantify how far I’d go out of my way to avoid a hospital that had that as its primary purpose.

  83. I think you would find ALL hospitals have making a profit as a primary purpose (not the only top purpose, but certainly one). Without making a profit, tax-exempt hospitals cannot invest in capital equipment, fund certificate of need process, recruit physicians and other staff, or address physical plant needs.

    Also, there are a large hospital chains, particularly in Florida, that are not tax exempt, and are publicaly traded entities. Would you really avoid going to one of those?

  84. saac – It isn’t just financial profit. It is self perpetuation, prestige, mission, empire. The bigger and more prestigious the institution, the bigger the administration and its budget and the greater focus on fund raising and return on investment and full pay clients/students/patients. A hospital that doesn’t raise money can’t have the latest medical equipment and best medical staff. A university needs a big budget and modern facilities to attract leading faculty and grant money. There is nothing wrong with local medical clinics that provide needed services or schools without much in the way of physical plant or rock star faculty, these rely on the willingness of people to work for less money than they could get elsewhere out of a sense of mission. But there is also a need for pediatric cancer centers and leading research institutions.

  85. Also, I know of no physician practices that are tax-exempt (other than faculty practices owned by a tax-exempt health care organization, and even those are often under the umbrella of a separate taxed entity).

  86. These entities are formed under the non-profit sections of state corp codes. They literally are called non-profit corporations. They have different duties and responsibilities and have to promote whatever it is they are formed to do. Of course they need to make money to operate, but their duties aren’t to the shareholders and maximizing value. For profit companies are formed to do whatever the shareholders and then the board/officers determine. They almost never have limitations like non-profits.

  87. Maybe this is splitting hairs, but non-profits should (and are legally required to) be promoting the purpose for which they were formed. Making money goes towards fulfilling that goal. For profit companies are formed to make a profit for the shareholders.

  88. et tu, Meme? I never said that schools and hospitals don’t raise money and engage in business, simply that their primary concern ought to be elsewhere; the financial dealings are there to support their mission, not vice-versa. So while they do business, they are not a business at their core.

  89. Kate, your 10:30 post makes the point I’ve been trying to make. Perhaps people will understand your wording better.

  90. Denver, why the grouch tone? Anyway, you’ve introduced a different topic.
    I was asking about the effects of the shift. The effect I see is that people are early for things, which isn’t a problem (is it?)

    The effect is that it throws off people’s circardian rhythms/internal clocks. I think it’s more of an issue in the spring with “losing” an hour – studies have found a significant increase in traffic accidents on the Monday following the start of DST in the spring.

    And I have no idea what you mean by people being early – are you talking about people who forget to change their clocks and show up an hour early someplace?

  91. Maybe this is splitting hairs, but non-profits should (and are legally required to) be promoting the purpose for which they were formed. Making money goes towards fulfilling that goal. For profit companies are formed to make a profit for the shareholders.

    Right. But they are still both businesses. One is trying to make money for the shareholders, the other is trying to make money to support their mission/purpose.

  92. Oh yeah – I would consider them all to be businesses. But if you are using “business”‘to mean profit (which is what I think S&M is doing), they are different. They are different enough that we had a separate group that dealt with non-profits at every law firm where I have worked.

  93. S&M, DD answered your question for me why I don’t like the end of DST. If you still genuinely don’t get it, I’m not sure how to explain it another way. Like Lark, I prefer more light in the later hours. I don’t care as much if it’s darker in the morning. But I can see how others prefer the opposite. I don’t have a consistent problem with being late.

  94. “One is trying to make money for the shareholders, the other is trying to make money to support their mission/purpose.” Yes. To me, it’s like the difference between a waiter who took vocational training for that job (exists in Germany & France, idk about anywhere else) and someone who is waiting tables and also appears in every film, commercial, or stage production they can. Both wait tables. Both make money that way. The first is clearly a waiter. The second is more likely to define themself as an actor (who waits tables to make money). In defining a corporate entity, doesn’t its mission matters more than if it deals in money as part of supporting that mission?

  95. S&M, my original point that started this discussion was that the Alabama president’s (or whatever his title is) that “I hate very much to use this analogy, but it’s like running a business,” Dr. Whitaker said. is ridiculous because a University is a business, so it’s not “like” running a business it is running a business.

    Nothing that you or anyone else has said has disagreed with that. You’re just arguing that it’s not a for-profit business, and I never it was.

  96. DD, all the switching absolutely messes with people’s circadian rhythms–heart attacks increase after the change. It always takes a while for bodies to adjust to the “new” time, so that in the fall, people are hungry an hour before dinner, tired an hour before bed, awake before the alarm goes off, etc. That’s what I meant by early. We should just pick a time and leave it. My preference would be for the one that lets kids walk to school/buses safely (I don’t see the safety issue involved in the dark an hour earlier, but maybe there’s an uptick in accidents I don’t know about), but if we didn’t do all the resetting, maybe school districts would choose start times that do that consistently.

  97. I was actually ready for DST to end this year, for the first time ever. Last week, it was still fully dark at 7:00 AM, the sun didn’t come up until after 7:30. I don’t need a whole lot of light in the morning, but that was beyond my tolerance. I am counting the days until the solstice so that we get more light again. There just aren’t enough hours of daylight this time of year anyway.

    The time changes actually does matter for our business. Since most of the work occurs outdoors, we adjust work scheduled based on when the sun comes up. Most of the employees we can tell to come at 6, or 7, or 8, depending on when it gets light. We have had one employee who can’t seem to understand that we can’t work until it is daylight and he was consistently coming at the same time even though it was full dark.

    Ada, your little one can come hang out with me. I turned the clocks back on Saturday night and realized I was going to bed at 8:30. DH, DD1, and DS were all away, DD2 took the SAT and had crashed before 7:00 pm. Maybe we are just secret eastcoasters.

  98. I think one reason for changing the time is that dawn varies considerably. I kind of like dawn to be between 5 and 6. With the extension of DST into November, in this area, dawn started coming well after 7:00 am, which actually does make it hard to get going in the morning.

  99. “My preference would be for the one that lets kids walk to school/buses safely (I don’t see the safety issue involved in the dark an hour earlier, but maybe there’s an uptick in accidents I don’t know about), but if we didn’t do all the resetting, maybe school districts would choose start times that do that consistently.”

    So, (a), I do believe there are studies that show a significant increase in commuting accidents after DST goes away as more people adjust to commuting in the dark. And (b), if you expect the schools to develop reasonable schedules around circadian rhythms and walker safety, well, that horse left the barn back when there were horses and barns.

    I loveLoveLOVE the end of DST, because I get an extra hour’s sleep, and because it seems to signal time to go into hibernation mode and watch movies and the like. This year was extra nice because it was actually almost thinking about being light on the way to Crossfit this AM. :-) And then I love the change in spring (even though that Sat. night is my least favorite night of the year), because suddenly it is light late and it feels like winter is over and it’s time to play baseball.

  100. And (b), if you expect the schools to develop reasonable schedules around circadian rhythms and walker safety, well, that horse left the barn back when there were horses and barns.

    This. It’s never going to happen.

    The best way to optimize the time would be to go back to the old days of every city having it’s own time. With timezones, you’re never going to satisfy everyone (even if you could get people to agree on when the optimal time is for daylight to occur) because of geographical differences. Not to mention that the timezones aren’t accurate geographically. (Indiana is geographically in the central timezone but insists on being on Eastern time,aside from two small areas.)

  101. “The best way to optimize the time would be to go back to the old days of every city having it’s own time.”

    Which is a lot easier with DVRs.

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