Work of Art: Can we recover that lost hour?

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By Art Trujillo

Did anyone show up an hour late for church on Sunday? There seems to be a correlation between the beginning of Daylight Saving Time and the number of excuses people conjure up for being an hour late.

Possibly the only person on the planet who feels this way, I like DST — for as long as it lasts. It represents a half year of an extra hour of daylight at a time when the days are getting longer anyway. My oldest son, Stan, who lives way in the northern European climes, laments — with some justification — about winter days when the sun rises around 10 a.m., stops and thinks about it for a few hours, and goes back into hiding at 3:30.

And in the summer, just the opposite happens.

Well now, Martha Johnsen, whose daily morning talk-and-music program includes a mixture of folk wisdom and humor, lamented losing that precious hour of sleep when she needed to report for work an hour earlier than accustomed.

Well OK, Martha, but it’s not as if the hour’s gone forever and suddenly we’re living through 23-hour days. We get the hour back in the evening, when we’re able to ride our bikes and fire up our grills. We don’t lengthen a blanket by cutting a foot off the bottom and sewing it to the top.

My son’s dogs, Hera and Zeus, must really be informed, as they began their vespertine barking right on time, around 8 p.m., just as it was getting dark.

And talk about smart: During last summer’s dog days, Hera and Zeus simply collapsed on our front porch, next to a large analog thermometer that showed 97 degrees, way too hot for Las Vegas, the place that used to be called “The city of blanket nights.”

The dogs’ smartness should be obvious. We never explained to them that 97 degrees is brutally uncomfortable for man and beast, but yet just by looking at the thermometer, the dogs realized they’d best try to get some sleep in the shade of the porch.

• • •

We Trujillos must never be allowed to hide Easter eggs. Why? Because we do too good a job: nobody can ever find them. The same goes for important papers, like car titles and warranty deeds. We take them out of their file folders and put the documents in a safe place so we can have them handy when we need them.

The result is that we hide them even from ourselves. Such was the case just recently when we simply had to have important documents for our visit with Social Security. The papers were nowhere to be found.

We called the County Clerk’s office, where one of the office workers, deputy clerk Michelle Padilla, located the official documents and had copies waiting for us.

County Clerk Melanie Rivera certainly knows how to pick her office crew. Wouldn’t it be great if every public servant were as helpful and competent as Michelle Padilla?

• • •

Each week, the Optic inserts a soft-news, Parade-like supplement, American Profile.

Las Vegas gets a regional edition that highlights things of interest to this area.

The latest issue of American Profile mentions Carla Gomez’s Tapetes de Lana, in Mora.

The clipping says, “Tapetes de Lana, a nonprofit organization started in 1998 by Carla Gomez, is reviving northern New Mexico’s weaving industry. Inside the  group’s spinning mill in Mora County (pop. 5,180), artisans craft locally produced raw wool into shawls, scarves, rugs, blankets and other textiles.”

Gomez also began Tapetes de Lana in Las Vegas, now the Travelers Cafe, on the Plaza. Many locals, of course, know about this laid-back coffee-and-snack location next to the Plaza Park, but somehow it’s even nicer when an enterprise that started here and has spread to the Mora Valley receives a citation in a national publication.

Art Trujillo is a copy editor at the Optic and a contributing member of the newspaper’s Editorial Board. He may be reached by calling 425-6796 or by e-mail to artbt@rezio.net or atrujillo@lasvegasoptic.com.