Banter Bites

Saving Time … Resetting Clocks?

Love it, hate it, or just don't care about it … but you can't avoid it.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: It happens like clockwork every fall, as Red starts to hate the feeling of waking up in darkness, she's pleasantly reminded that the clocks will be turned back shortly; while to Black, who keeps oddball hours, none of it really matters to her, except for having to remember to reset all her clocks.


Red loves the fall and winter months, except when it gets too cold, which she now defines as dropping below freezing. Although she grew up in New York, her decades living in sub-tropical climates (first Hong Kong, then Shanghai, and now Houston) may not have "thinned out her blood" (as the old wives' tale says), but it has made her less tolerant of the cold. But that doesn't stop her from loving when it gets darker earlier, and for the same reason she likes dreary, rainy days (so long as she doesn't have to go out because it causes her hair to frizz) … she welcomes the cozy feeling of being bundled up inside.

Black, on the other hand, is more pragmatic about it. Initially, she thought Daylight Saving Time was instituted to save energy but was surprised to learn it's a moneymaking strategy endorsed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. And independent of the fact she prefers the extra sunlight (and vitamin D), she'd like them (she was fascinated to learn "them" is the Department of Transportation, although it would take an Act of Congress to do it) to permanently switch to Daylight Saving Time since we use it most the year anyway. (Sorry, Red.) Not to mention, it would eliminate time wasted resetting all the clocks twice a year.

Two years ago, on MLK Day, Red learned the power and inspiration of the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. And the power of dreams. And as long as there's social unrest and social injustice in the United States (stop and think about the first word … as we’re supposed to be united), the more we can learn from him … as not only did he fight for equality for all, but his approach is proof of the power of peaceful protests.

For most of us, writing and delivering one powerful and/or inspiring thing would be a very difficult task. To be remembered for hundreds is truly amazing.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: There's so much one can say about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., who led the civil rights movement from the mid-1950s until his assassination in 1968, and whose leadership was fundamental to the ending of legal segregation in many parts of the United States. But regardless of your position on segregation, it's almost impossible not to acknowledge, yet alone appreciate, how incredibly powerful and inspiring his words were and the impact they continue to have on the civil rights movement. But don't believe us. This goodreads post provides more than just a good read, it's a seemingly endless list of inspirational quotes while a great "refresher" course on Dr. King is available at History.com.

We grew up in New York, where bagels are almost sacred, but even though they may have started as a Jewish food in Europe, they’re now enjoyed by everyone everywhere (including Red and Black, but in very different ways) – why else would there be a National Bagel Day?

National holidays aren’t the time to count calories.

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: We both agree that happiness has a hole in it, although one of us may only eat one bagel a year while the other tries to keep it to only one bagel when she does indulge.

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Another year and another National Clean Your Desk Day (yes, that’s actually a thing). So, is Red’s desk any better than the “disaster” it was last year? Well, believe it or not, it may not be perfect, but it’s significantly better. Is it because she finally listened to Black’s advice (see below) or somehow found a “secret” of her own? As it turns out, it was a combination of the two as Red discovered, even if the rest of her life isn’t “nice and neat” (that’ll never happen), she loves walking into her workroom in the morning and starting the day in a (somewhat) organized space, which provides the best motivation for keeping it that way. (Luckily, Black never brought up the science of messy desks.)

A day to clean up your desk?! It will take way more than a day …

BANTER BITE BACKSTORY: No one is immune from piles of paper, not even Black, the master of organization, but there’s a huge difference between a desk with a few small piles and some scattered papers (although her laptop’s keyboard needs serious cleaning) and Red’s “workroom” that usually looks like a tornado hit it.

Which is why Red rolled her eyes when Black mentioned today’s National Clean Your Desk Day, as it’d take her significantly more than a day to “clean up this mess,” but then she remembered Black’s advice on how to keep her piles (and piles) of paper under control and felt inspired. Red admits often feeling like she’s drowning in paper, but that’s because she lets the piles get out of control before reminding herself of Black’s very easy, straightforward approach to turning her mountains of paper into small manageable hills. And, significantly reducing stress along the way, because as Black points out,

Sometimes, it is more important to know what you are ignoring than it is to deal with everything in the piles.