Friday, October 28, 2011

Time Be Time

In the shower this morning I had, well not exactly an epiphany but close. When I was Jessie's age, time was measured in minutes--minutes till recess, minutes till dinner, minutes in a cartoon. The minutes (about 15) it took to walk to school took FOREVER. By high school minutes had ceded place of prominence to hours--a class period, hours till the end of the school day, hours till a party or a date. Neither of these statements is to say that days and weeks didn't count. The big events--summer vacation, Christmas, my birthday--were still anticipated weeks and days in advance, but the dominant measurement of the passing of time was the hour.

Sometime in my 20's--probably commensurate with leaving school and entering the Working World (entering at least for awhile before fleeing back to school) the class hour gave way to the work day and days began to shape life events--TGIF, I hate Mondays, Wednesday is hump day. There was also a vague grouping into weeks and months (never years unless in the past), but it remained firmly vague.

Side note: I *love* writing. I hated it when I was forced to do it on some else's schedule for class assignments and to conform to someone else's rules (grammar--smack my knuckles with a ruler). Now, the juxtaposition of the words "firmly" and "vague" actually gives me a little burst of satisfied happiness at having found just the right phrase. But time passes as I digress so let's get back to the passage of time.

Now, as I wander the other side of the fifty-year mark, I could care less about hours anymore (an hour, isn't that about the time it takes to sneeze and find the tissues?), and days have begun to clump into a week-shaped blob. In fact days only get recognized when I find or lose them. For instance, last week in my weaving class, on Thursday night as I was planning my last project, I was sure I had two days left to complete it--that it was, in effect, Wednesday night. I was not so lucky (hence working till 1:00 am Saturday). Other weeks I will be stressing because I think it's Wednesday, and then I realize it's only Tuesday, and the relief that floods my system along with the realization is almost intoxicating. Weekends are no longer the days Saturday and Sunday, they are a differential break in the rhythm of Monday through Friday (or not, depending on the studio's work load). Compare it to finding or losing a dollar at age nine to finding or losing $20 now...

A lot of the contemplation (in the shower, as I cleaned the lint out of my navel) that resulted in the post above, was triggered by the realization that I am 50, and 50 seems like a reasonable half-way point in life. The time it took to get here seemed comfortably long. But as my perception of time compresses, are the next 50 years going to rush by? I don't want them to rush! I want more time! Maybe I'll need to live to 150. Time to start working on that goal.

1 comment:

Bill said...

Or 1050...