The ebook alone was enough to break my mind into jagged pieces and reconfigure them into new patterns. But it was something in the mp3 that sparked a thought that I wanted to talk about.
We talk about wasting time and running out of time as if we mean it. As if we have so many minutes to use and once we run out of that scarce resource, we're stuck in a timeless void until we catch up to our allotment.
And when you think about it, that's a pretty ridiculous idea. Being afraid of being stuck in a timeless void because we wasted too many minutes on Facebook is kinda on the same level as being afraid of running out of prime numbers. Not gonna happen.
So what is it that we're afraid of when we worry about wasting time? We're really afraid that we won't have time to do the things we really want to do. We're really afraid that we will regret our decisions. We're really afraid that we're doing the wrong thing.
And that's different, you see. It's not that we're freaking out about wasting time. We're freaking out about the possibility that there are right choices and wrong ones. We're freaking out about the possibility that someday, we will have to face a judgement panel that's going to stare down their long noses at us with a frown and demand that we account for all of our minutes - as if they have dripped out of our pockets - and we will feel ashamed of how we used those minutes. We're freaking out at the vulnerability of not knowing how this decision will turn out, that it might make us feel bad in the future.
Time is an artificial scarcity. We have as many minutes as we have. The real problem is that we are so rarely present for ourselves that we often don't realize that we'd rather be doing something else.
** The proper response to the title of this post is "Lunchtime, doubly so." Thanks for all the fish, Mr. Adams.