Daylight savings time is tricky. And controversial. And not entirely universal.
I’m not going to talk about that.
I am here today to talk about something that writers and comedians everywhere have harped on since the dawn of time: the strange brand of helplessness practiced by my husband.
This is not, for the record, going to be one of those infantilizing, “Oh, these men, they just can’t manage anything without a woman to see them through the day!” sort of rants. I hate that shit, and I’m sure you’re tired of it. Besides, when I met him, Husband was an adult human who paid bills and cleaned his house and fed himself and showered and everything. He hadn’t bought new clothes without prompting from either mother or girlfriend in just about forever, but that goes to the kind of guy he is (he doesn’t notice when anyone else is going about in rags either, unless they smell) and I know he’s not the only adult person in the world who feels this way. And – while I do think it’s weird that I suddenly became responsible for reminding him to eat and helping him figure out what he would like to eat when I know for a fact he used to do all of that for himself – this isn’t about how I have to do all of that, because he makes me curry and nice things, and is a damned fine cook.
No, I’m here to talk about clocks.
I’ll lead off with this one, which happened in the car the other day.
ME: We’re so late.
HIM: If you know how to adjust the clock, would you?
ME: (presses four buttons) Done.
HIM: Oh. Thank you!
ME: You seriously don’t know how to do that?
HIM: I’m driving! And trying to get us there on time! It comes up twice a year, and you’re in the passenger seat when it does.
ME: No, more than that. Because that clock slips. Loses time. I have to adjust it periodically.
HIM: … Oh. Well, see?
ME: And I do it from the driver’s seat, too.
HIM: Oh. See?
ME: (thoughtfully) I did it in the old car too…
HIM: I know.
ME: When was the last time you knew how to set a clock that you owned?
HIM: … My dad had a VCR…
ME: Oh my god.
HIM: … and every time I was home from college, it would be blinking 12:00
HIM: He was probably about my age
Now, to refute his claim that this is a twice-a-year thing (or your assumption that it’s just the dash clock in the car) I reveal, with a flourish, this little gem.
ME: Don’t go by that, the clock in the kitchen’s still off
ME: (shrugs) Did anyone reset it after the power went out?
HIM: When did the power go out??
ME: Like a month ago? For about 18 hours?
HIM: Oh. Oh, yeah.
ME: Good job remembering, honey.
Look, I know everyone has blind spots – I’ve got a friend who gets absolutely apoplectic over the word “crayon” because she pronounces it “crown” and doesn’t understand why everyone else is saying it weird – but this is a brilliant, capable adult (engineer! ffs!) who cannot seem to set a clock.
And then he pulls that “angle of the sun” bit, and I…