We spend a lot of time at Asylum HQ pondering when is the best time to take a two-hour lunch or slip into the Wellness room for a quick nap. So we were pretty into the concept of "Buy Ketchup in May and Fly at Noon: A Guide to the Best Time to Buy This, Do That and Go There
," a new book that outlines the best times to do everything from eat a snack to fire someone. (May is the beginning of picnic season, and you can find ketchup on sale. And airports have fewer people and shorter lines at noon.)
Keep reading for a few of our favorite examples from the book of the best time to handle some of life's stickier situations.
When Is the Best Time of the Day to Fire Someone?
Late afternoon. Chances are, you'll sadden the employee no matter what you do, but if you do it late in the afternoon, there are two advantages: 1) Fewer people are in the office then, so the situation will be more private and confidential; and 2) you probably won't kill him. Seriously: Heart attacks are more likely to happen in the first three hours after awakening, and 30 to 40 percent more likely to occur between 6 a.m. and noon, when blood pressure and heart rate peak, putting stress on arterial walls. The American Heart Association has even weighed in on this, recommending that all firings and layoffs occur after 10 a.m.
When Is the Best Time of the Day to Speed?
At 8a.m., 4 p.m., and midnight. Or whenever police and sheriff's department shift changes occur where you live. No one is advocating breaking the law, but sometimes our minds wander when we're behind the wheel, leading to our driving over the speed limit. The best time to do that is when police officers, including those on speed-trap duty, are either just getting off duty or just starting work, when they often haven't yet begun patrolling their areas.
When Is the Best Time to Ask Someone Out on a Date?
Noon. Our moods are often good then because we're looking forward to a well-deserved break in the workday and our minds are less cluttered because we're focusing not on working but on eating. Ask your would-be boyfriend or girlfriend out then. And if you get turned down? That's OK -- feelings of depression tend to peak earlier in the day and fade by lunchtime.
Which Is the Best Day of the Week to Get a Free Hotel Upgrade?
Sunday or Monday. Those are usually the slowest days of the week, when you're more likely to get an upgrade because more rooms are vacant. It also helps when your Sunday-Monday stay occurs during "low season" wherever you happen to be, such as August in Dallas or January in Minneapolis.
When Is the Best Time of the Day to Make Love?
Between 10 at night and one in the morning. Both social and biological factors influence this. First, the biology: our sense of touch and our skin sensitivity are at their highest levels in the late evening, when we're already in a comfy place -- bed. The other reasons, the social ones, tend to be more practical: Couples work during the day and are busy in early evening, preparing dinner and spending time with their children. Late evening is probably the only time during the week that couples with children can make time for sex. But that isn't the only explanation. During the weekends and on vacations, when our weekday schedules are thrown off, sex still seems to occur more often between 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.
When Is the Best Day of the Week to Ask for a Pay Raise?
Thursday or Friday. We're most open to negotiation and compromise then because most of us want to finish our work week with the least amount of conflict. This feeling at the end of the workweek may be preparation for the weekend, when we spend more time with family and friends, getting along with whom is a high priority. Others point out that Fridays are the best day to give favorable performance reviews, so if you receive one then, ask for a big raise.
When Is the Best Time of the Day to Play Video Games?
Late afternoon. Hand-eye coordination reaches optimal levels then.
When Is the Best Time of the Day to Dumpster Dive?
Between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. Early evening is best because apartment dwellers often take their trash to the dumpster after they eat dinner, and businesses do so at the end of the workday. If they're throwing out any good stuff, that's when they'll do it, and that's when the experienced dumpster divers will be there waiting.
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. (Men's Fitness)