Thursday, May 8, 2008

Time Zones

Okay, I'll be the first to admit that I don't encounter issues with time zones everyday, but when I do, they're almost overwhelming. Take this current trip, for instance. Travel from Dayton to Sarasota, FL...no problem. EDT (Eastern Daylight Time) all the way. But then comes the flight from CLT (Charlotte, NC) to PHX (Phoenix, AZ) to ANC (Anchorage, AK) to JNU (Juneau, AK). I tried to manage the different time zones the best I could by specifying in Outlook what time zone I was actually going to be in for each appointment I added. (In the past, I'd neglected to do this and then changed the time zone on my laptop to reflect my current location only to find that every appointed on my calendar was screwed up and its taken the better part of a year to get everything back in order. I don't like to make the same mistake twice in a row...that's just stupid.)

Now here's where part of the problem comes in...why can't all the devices I sync with Outlook follow along? I sync my Blackberry and my cell phone (Nokia 6682) with Outlook so I always have my schedule handy, no matter what instrument I happen to have on me at the time. My cell phone changes time zones automatically wherever I happen to be. A nice feature. My Blackberry does not, resisting any and all attempts to identify its own location without some user input. Now I'm afraid to change my PC timezone as I still don't know if all of the appointments I have on my calendar have the correct time zone specified and I'm not willing to risk another colossal mess. The downside is that while my phone knows the time where it is, it doesn't realize that the appointments were made in different time zones. As a result, alarms are constantly going off about four hours early. My Blackberry, which shows the wrong time, gets the alarms right.

Is this making sense? Can you see why I'm so frustrated?

Why hasn't somone figured this out? Surely there are people who routinely travel for work, travel across time zones, and have had to deal with this. Have we all just given up to the spectre that is changing time zones? C'mon people...I need guidance! Advice! Suggestions! Anything that might help keep my from losing my mind...or missing a flight or an appointment.

AAAARRRGGGHHHH!

Does anyone know what time it is...really?