Time is not my friend.

I feel oppressed by Time. It’s got one over me.

On Fridays I begin to feel down because that means the weekend is here, which means the weekend is soon going to be over and that means Monday’s coming which means I need to go to work again. It’s not that I don’t like work, I like it when I’m there, but getting there requires me to dig deep and pull something out of my precious reserves to motivate myself to do it all over again.

Time for me has a relentlessness and senselessness to it all that is like Japanese water torture. Drip, drip…. drip. It’s like the death of a thousand cuts. It seems to be grinding me down. Another week goes by, another month. It’s coming at me faster than I can contemplate it. It doesn’t seem fair. It’s like the pitcher launching a curve ball before I’ve even swung through the air and squared up at the plate. It’s like the bowler running in before I’ve faced up at the crease. It seems  just that little bit ahead of me all the time. It’s like a car cutting into my lane on the freeway, then braking, now accelerating.

It’s moving faster than my resources can manage it. I used to manage Time. Now it just stares me down and pushes me about in a sullen way that leaves me feeling molested and violated. I can’t move at the same pace that Time moves. I used to dance with Time and if I needed to, I could outstrip it and leave it for dead. I would save Time. I would kill Time. I would fill Time. I could make Time. I would milk Time for all it’s worth. But now it has its sweet revenge and I feel like a rag-doll in the mouth of a rottweiler pup that doesn’t know its own strength, nor the fragility of its toy.

I wish everything could slow down. I want to be like Neo in Matrix who could, like a police officer, extend his hand and bend and shift Time and bring it to a standstill.

I wish I had the mental agility to process the content of Time, to make the decisions that need to be made moment by moment, and the energy to interact with my environment borne along and powered by that primal energy that forces the earth to rotate around the sun. But I don’t. I’m moving in slow motion, but my world isn’t. We are out of sync and the mismatch is taxing me at the maximum rate, and there won’t be a refund at the end the of the year. Just another year and more Time slipping by and shoving me on its way through.

I protest and refuse to cooperate and play Time’s game. I try to slow down and mark Time in the hope that Time will see some sense. But who am I kidding? King Canute as much as he tried, couldn’t stop the tide. And I am a hapless victim mesmerized by the ticking of a Time bomb like a rat looking into the eyes of a cobra.

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7 Responses

  1. I once had a teacher that would always tell us to hurry up because, “time waits for no man.” I grew up fearing the truth in that expression.

  2. Hey ibitemynails, that’s so true! Time indeed waits for no man, and seems particularly harsh on slow coaches. Looks like your teacher was right.

  3. I was going to write an eloquent response, but I’m out of time! Eckhart Tolle’s book “The Power of Now” has something worth saying on this subject, though most Christians would dismiss it as new age hogwash. The secret is always living in the now, but the problem is my ego keeps popping its head out and saying “ooh that was a now moment, that was good” – the noticing of the moment removes me from the moment. The noticing interrupts me, takes me back to time-slavery. The ego wants so bad to control the show it then works out ways to have another ‘now’ moment – but it can only be experienced, never dissected, examined or evaluated. Martin Buber’s beautiful work on I/Thou relationships are also very worth reading. A masterpiece and the essence of living beyond the temporal, today.

  4. Scrap, this is a piece of brilliant expression of a deeply depressed, but strangely hopeful individual. God bless you.

    They say ther’e’s no time like the present, but I feel that may be true of the past as well as the future.

    Hope draws and propels us into the future, however. Contemplation of what God is going to do is true hope.

    Folks who live in the past of what He did on the cross for us don’t hope for much happening now.

    Folks who live in the present of experiencing Him now, hope in the moment, and it keeps passing away, or as he says, slipping, slipping slipping ….

    Folks who live in the future of what He is going to do in them and in others through them hope in eternity, and they are not disappointed, … by anything that happens in the now (or doesn’t).

    (need i give cites for these spiritual truisms?) tw

  5. Thanks Richard for the heads up on what sounds like great reading. A similar idea to “The Power of Now” is what I’ve been thinking about – a technique psychologists are using called Mindfulness and its something that I need to learn to practice. It anchors us more closely to now and what is going on, but doesn’t allow us to be a victim of what is happening in the now…. maybe it helps us to transcend it and maintain our peace. I’ll write about it when I know more!

    TW thanks for your thoughts about time. I definitely think we need to have hope for the future, in order to manage the “now” with greater poise and grace. Unfortunately, hope has avoided me, but I’m hoping to track it down. I think when I find it, a few things will fall into place.

  6. Hi Jack,
    As you know Time, like Money, is merely a social agreement originally meant to facilitate transactions and communication. But like our value of Money, Time has overtaken our lives as something more solid or important than its original purpose.
    I like Eckhart Tolle’s explanation: That Bloody Tyrant: Time doesn’t exist but we need “clock-time” (the social agreement) in the living of our daily lives and to help schedule appointments. But when the fear of Time (or lack of time) seems to overwhelm our living at any moment, we lose mindfulness to our imagination and thus stress.
    You’ve expressed that stress wonderfully in this post. I look forward to a follow-up post describing your liberation from Time.

  7. Everyman, that’s a fantastic insight into the construction of Time. It’s interesting that what is basically a social construct to help us, can become the slave driver….

    The indigenous culture of our country actually see time as circular not linear, so they have a very different lifestyle as a result. Maybe time doesn’t “have” to be linear or circular, but as you say, just a social agreement to facilitate transactions…..

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