Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Because I ride the bus most weekday mornings and because I don’t like to miss it, I spend some fair amount of time most days waiting for it. If I were bolder about my ability to race from home to Third and Jackson and more confident that Sound Transit drivers were likely to keep to their printed schedules, then I might be more willing to cut things closer, but as it is, I usually arrive at the stop five to fifteen minutes before my bus arrives. Consequently, I end up standing around, looking at people, cars, and buildings until my ride pulls up.

I don’t especially hate this, but I do wonder whether I’m wasting my life away in moments that I could be spending doing something else, more productive, move loving, maybe, or more fun. I mean, there I am, at 7:20 in the morning, watching people get off the Sound train from Tacoma, when I could, were I less frantic about arriving on time, be having another half cup of coffee with my wife and daughter before heading out.

It’s a truism that, as we age, we seem to get less anxious about passing empty moments like this and it’s commonly observed how odd that is: you’d think with less time remaining, we’d want to pack as much as possible into it. My guess is that by a certain time in our lives, we’ve come to notice that most of what we do or don’t in any given moment doesn’t matter nearly as much as we once thought it did. So, back when I was 25, for instance, because every second of my life represented twice as large a percentage of it as it does now, each one seemed all that much more important.

Now, though, with—if not the wisdom, at least the experience—of age, I’ve come to believe that ten minutes here are there hardly matter …although twice that many probably would a lot.


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