Time flies when you are having funIs it me or is this summer zipping by at a record pace? It must be because I’ve heard at least 100 people say that it is.
By: Kevin Holten, The Dickinson Press
Is it me or is this summer zipping by at a record pace? It must be because I’ve heard at least 100 people say that it is. In fact, this summer might be my fastest summer ever, even faster than last summer, which was my previous fastest summer ever. How is that possible? Is summer speeding up?
Naturally, I’ve only done a fraction of the things that I’d planned to do this summer and I’m beginning to wonder if I’m going to be able to do the 1 million more things that I wanted to do in my life. Time is really starting to get in the way of my plans, especially since I must be at least halfway through my life because nobody can live to be 100 taking care of themselves the way that I have.
Thus, I find myself being a little less patient than I was in the past, knowing that my time is valuable and sweating the little things seems like a ridiculous waste of my time. That’s why stop signs bug me.
You see, in California, nobody really stops at a stop sign. You simply slow down, tap the brakes a little and sail through. No policeman in his right mind is going to give you a ticket for that, especially since they already know that going to the grocery store, gas station, cleaners and hardware store is going to take at least twice as long as it does in North Dakota, because there are about 32 million more people to get in your way, and so they don‘t expect you to waste your time.
In North Dakota, people not only stop at a stop sign, they “spend” time there, pour a cup of coffee from a thermos, dig a homemade cookie out of an old Folgers can, blow their nose and pull out their cellphone and call a former classmate. Then they glance at a motorist approaching the four-way stop from another direction and wait for them to signal that it is their turn to go, even if they arrived at the four-way stop first. I don’t get it. It drives me crazy.
“Go!” I yell, but they don’t seem to hear me and when I emphatically wave at them to move it along they just look at me with disdain, dip their cookie into their coffee cup again and wave me through the intersection like I‘m some sort of raving lunatic.
Nevertheless, it still seems like time is getting faster every year and that I was being handed this year’s birthday presents right after I finished opening last years.
Of course, people smarter than me say that days seem to go by faster when you get older because by the time someone is 50 an entire year is only 2 percent of your total life experience and that 2 percent is not perceived to be nearly as long as the 20 percent it was when you were 5.
Which for some reason reminds me of when I was 12 years old and some friends knocked a baby crow out of a nest and I took him home, much to my mother’s disdain, put him in the garage, fed him raw hamburger and bread and watched him grow into healthy adult that would fly around in circles above me and then swoop down to land on my arm, just like they write it up in those bestselling Disney movies.
You see, each morning he’d wake up at sunrise and caw loudly and ceaselessly, waking up everyone within a five-mile radius while waiting for me to come out of the house like a waiter from a grade A restaurant and serve him his medium-well ground steak.
I know that my mother developed a close relationship with the Lord that summer, praying daily that my cocky pet crow would somehow realize that he was a bird and that he needed to develop friendly relationships with those who were much more like him and head south for the winter or whatever it is that crows do.
Fortunately he did, meeting up with a gang of crows from south Saskatchewan, I suspect, who’s chief had a particularly attractive young daughter or why else would he leave me, his father, high and dry, putting an end to my dreams of being the only kid in math class to take a test with a crow on his shoulder.
Did you also know that crows have been observed to eat nuts that they initially couldn’t crack open and placed them on a highway so that vehicles could pass over them and crack them open after which they’d swoop in and eat them?
That might seem incredibly ingenious at first and certainly implies that crows are blessed with advanced intelligence until you factor in how much time it might have taken them to figure that out, perhaps generations, and was it really worth it?
But then, as Bertrand Russell, the English logician and philosopher once said, “The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.”
Holten is a freelance columnist and cartoonist from Dickinson.