It’s heee-eeere.

What did I say the other day about November? Today I made some calls and, in waiting for them to be returned, thought I might read a few pages of “The Plot Against America,” which I can’t recommend highly enough. Because it’s November and because my alarm goes off at 3:45 a.m., I drifted off for about 10 minutes. When I woke up, I could have sworn winter arrived in just that 10 minutes — the room was dim. The clouds had stacked up the way they like to do in winter, preparatory to cementing themselves in place until, oh, March 15th or so.

I looked at the clock. Four p.m. God help me.

Our new governor-elect wants to bring Indiana kicking and screaming into the 20th century — he wants us to adopt that dangerous idea, daylight-saving time. But with a sick twist: We’d move to the central time zone. If he pushes this, I will…I will…I will be very angry. Central daylight time is essentially what we’re on in the summer, which means nothing significant would change in the warm weather, but in the winter? It would get dark at FOUR O’CLOCK IN THE GODDAMN AFTERNOON.

Why not just pass out cyanide capsules at Thanksgiving? It would make as much sense.

Let’s brighten up with some bloggage:

Carl Hiaasen is not only funny, he’s brave:

The hero (of “Basket Case”) was a muckraking reporter busted down to the obituary beat after publicly embarrassing his paper’s new budget-slashing corporate owner, Race Maggad, head of the Maggad-Feist newspaper chain. “These days we buy the loyalty of readers with giveaways and grocery coupons, not content,” Basket Case’s protagonist laments. Meanwhile, Maggad’s mandate was to “strive for brevity and froth, shirking from stories that demand depth or deliberation, stories that might rattle a few cages and raise a little hell.”

Maggad, of course, was a barely disguised caricature of Tony Ridder, CEO of the Herald’s own parent company, Knight Ridder.

Did you ever hear from Tony Ridder after Basket Case was published?

“Not a word,” Hiaasen answers dryly.

The real-life inspiration for Race Maggad wasn’t exactly veiled.

Hiaasen leans forward, all the humor drained from his voice. “How could I not write about him? I grew up with this newspaper. I’ve put my life into it! It was the paper that landed on my doorstep every morning. So I have a right to be pissed, just like any reader. Anyone who can look you in the eye and tell you the Miami Herald of 2004 is as good as it was in 1984 is out of their skull. It’s palpable, the difference is palpable.”

(You only get away with that when you write a best-seller every 24 months, by the way.)

Oh, have a good weekend. I plan to.

Posted at 8:19 pm in Uncategorized |

18 responses to “It’s heee-eeere.”

  1. Mindy said on November 12, 2004 at 6:13 am

    Old Man Winter, that Old Man Winter

    He comes in November and stays forever!

    He jus’ keeps blowin’

    Snowin’ and blowin’ along.

    He freezes our noses and kills our roses

    We all get colds, and then psychosis

    But he he keeps on blowin’

    Snowin’ and blowin’ along

    You and me, from November ’til March

    Not enough salad, and too much starch

    Push that car! Shovel that walk!

    Sun goes down about three o’clock

    I gets weary, and I work like a fool I

    sure could use a couple weeks of Jooo-ly!

    But Old Man Winter, he jus’ keeps blowin’ along.

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  2. Carmella said on November 12, 2004 at 6:52 am

    Speaking of Carl Hiaasen, has anyone read “Skinny Dip”? Funnn-EE! I would have mentioned it earlier when I read it, but I think someone referred to his work as ‘fluff’ at one time? I like some fluff once in awhile!! Who doesn’t?!?! :

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  3. James said on November 12, 2004 at 7:42 am

    But you ARE in the Central Time Zone. Take a look at the map. Y’all SHOULD be in the other zone. It takes a weird jiggy-jog now…

    When I was a Hoosier, I thought we should be in that zone. The upside? The Daily show at 10pm!

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  4. danno said on November 12, 2004 at 8:41 am

    Everything you ever wanted to know about DST and more!!!

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  5. danno said on November 12, 2004 at 8:51 am

    Page 6 talks primarily about Indiana’s oddity.

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  6. Connie said on November 12, 2004 at 9:18 am

    James said: The upside? The Daily show at 10pm!

    When we lived in Minnesota we decided the down side was: On New Year’s Eve, midnight for all the TV shows is at our 11 p.m. Makes our own midnight sort of anti-climactic.

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  7. Linda said on November 12, 2004 at 9:33 am

    One of the hard parts about moving to British Columbia from Indiana was, for me, the changing of the clocks every October and April. Living in Indiana all my life, I had never had to do this. In the Spring when you move them forward an hour, it’s not so bad, but in the Fall when you get up one morning and realize that it is now 5 a.m. and not the customary 6 a.m. when you rise, it somehow makes that first day seem endless.

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  8. joodyb said on November 12, 2004 at 10:47 am

    never having noticed the time change much in ohio, i embrace “fall back” in minnesota. that “endless” day is my favorite day of the year. an hour to bake cookies or visit trumpeter swans. and i make sure to use it doing something i don’t normally get to do. a minor gift ahead of ensuing gloom.

    of course, i despise giving it back in the spring.

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  9. vince said on November 12, 2004 at 11:20 am

    Now now Nance. You hyperbolizing journalist…

    The sun doesn’t set at 4pm.

    I’m in standard time now and the sun didn’t set til 4:42 yesterday! 🙂

    (Is 42 more minutes of sun enough to lift your spirits?)

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  10. brian stouder said on November 12, 2004 at 12:22 pm

    >>Our new governor-elect wants to bring Indiana kicking and screaming into the 20th century — he wants us to adopt that dangerous idea, daylight-saving time. But with a sick twist: We’d move to the central time zone. If he pushes this, I will…I will…I will be very angry.


    A perfect fusion of unreasonable, retro-Red state ulterior motives, packaged as broad-minded, benevolent Blue-state pragmatism!

    If you wanna kill the idea of Indiana adopting DST, make it so that it’s fully dark within 20 minutes of the kiddos returning from elementary school!!

    It’s Brilliant!! Gov-elect Daniels is positively…Rovian!


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  11. Nance said on November 12, 2004 at 1:32 pm

    Vincenzo, stop being such a smarty-britches. Winter solstice is more than a month away, and by that time, sundown will be at 5:15 local time, 4:15 under CST. Factor in our general lack of sunshine in winter months, and that makes for an early dark no matter how you slice it.

    What brings you to our time zone, anyway? And why haven’t you called?

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  12. TSO said on November 12, 2004 at 3:40 pm

    Columnist Joe Blundo wrote about the lack of sun in the Dispatch:

    Daylight-saving time ends too abruptly, if you ask me. As an accomplished practitioner of denial, I find it easy to delude myself about the coming of winter all through October.

    The weather is nice; the evenings are bright; baseball lingers. Winter seems distant. Perhaps we�ll even escape it this year, I think.

    Then comes the last Sunday in October, when we bring winter crashing down by turning back the clocks an hour. Suddenly, it�s growing dark at 5 p.m. This is not an insignificant matter.

    In central Ohio, light defines winter as much as weather. We don�t really have winter weather here � just a dozen variations of partly cloudy with a chance of rain…

    I suspect that the urge to shop also stems from a craving for light. I know that Target isn�t a sun-soaked beach in the Caribbean, but it�s not a bad place to soak up fluorescent illumination while checking out the merchandise.

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  13. Bob said on November 12, 2004 at 8:58 pm

    Now, y’all listen, you young whippersnappers! I’m an old geezer. I was aware of time zones before most of you were even thought of.

    Indiana used to be on Central Time, with DST. There was a dispute in the fifties about whether or not we should observe DST, and the state moved to local option. Some communities observed DST and some didn’t, without any established geographic boundaries. You think it’s confusing now?

    Eventually, the state moved to Central Daylight Savings Time year-around, and somehow came to regard itself as being in the eastern time zone without DST.

    More agitation, and we heaped DST on top of Eastern Time. Then there was general dissatisfaction because it was light way late at night, messing with drive-in theaters and fireworks displays. People didn’t like going to work in the morning in the dark in spring and fall, either. So we went back to Eastern Time without DST, which is the same as Central time with DST year-around, which is where ended up more than forty years ago.

    Why begin the cycle all over again? Most of the arguments for change are regional and specious. Geographically we should be in the Central time zone, and adding DST to what we already observe year-around would be doubling up. Once they had it, people didn’t like it the first time around. I don’t see any reason to think the outcome would be any different if we were to repeat the mistake.

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  14. basset said on November 12, 2004 at 10:28 pm

    having grown up in the Terre Haute TV market, I remember hearing promos for upcoming shows in both time zones (i.e. “Tonight at nine… eight in Illinois!”).

    then again, I can still recall the WTHI-TV news open from the early Seventies and Birch Bayh’s campaign song from, what was it, the 1960 election? “Hey look me over, I’m your kinda guy/My first name is Birch and my last name is Bayh…”

    it’s hell getting old.

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  15. Maureen said on November 13, 2004 at 11:49 am

    Off the topic, but saw the “cover” photo at Drudge today and thought of and the “old media/new media” debate. Here’s one for the old school.

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  16. Caleb said on November 13, 2004 at 12:16 pm

    Great Carl Hiaasen article. Very interesting comments on graphics vs. content (and amount of content) in the Miami Herald…

    And Race Maggad is based on Tony Ridder? Yikes.

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  17. Bob said on November 13, 2004 at 8:03 pm

    Basset, getting old doesn’t seem so bad when you contemplate the alternative.

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  18. ashley said on November 14, 2004 at 8:10 pm

    I certainly hope that the movie version of “Skinny Dip” is better than the last of his novel adaptations: “Strip Tease”. How anyone thought that Demi Moore should play the lead role in a comedy is beyond me.

    Wait, no it isn’t. They didn’t cast her for her comedic skills, they cast her for her silicone protuberances. Makes sense now.

    Although, I did like the scene with Burt in the boots and vaseline.

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