Last week was spring forward or whatever it is where the government robs me of an hour of my life like it's not a big deal. One second I'm hanging out with my long-lost friend Rachel at midnight and the next second it's one a.m. and I have to go home to bed. Frankly, I think it's inconsiderate to throw off someone's whole routine just because the earth rotates a little slower every year. I feel as though our planet is like a fat lady trying to diet. Get on a program and stick with it already. Of course I'm being facetious, but only kind of. I really do find time zones, February 29th, and why Arizona doesn't have to change with the rest of the country extremely disorienting. Now that I think about it, time in general is a mystery to me, and not just because my watch face isn't analog (although that did present a hefty learning curve. A quick glance and an estimation of where that minute hand is just won't cut it when you want to make it to work on time). There are very few times when I feel like time isn't flying--econ class, the last half hour of a shift, awkward conversations, you get the gist. Most of the time it races by at breakneck speed, seconds flying by so fast it would make your head spin. I knew the day was coming when I'd wish time would slow down, but I always imagined it happening in a far off and distant future, one where I pick kids up from soccer practice in khakis and a Ralph Lauren polo, not when I'm 19 and bumming around New Orleans.
This is absolutely tragic. I look around and ask myself, "Lauren, what the hell are you doing that makes you so busy?" And I can never come up with a good answer, so I'm led to the inevitable conclusion that I'm actually stuck in a continual time warp. I have no scientific evidence of this phenomenon but, regardless, I'm resolute in my conviction.* The warp ebbs and flows, I know, one, because of Econ class (I feel like I'm in there for years), and two, because flying home from New Orleans I was on the plane and probably also in another dimension. I was looking out the window when were flying over Colorado in a snowstorm, and the speed of the plane combined with the snow whipping past looked JUST like the stars did in Star Wars when the ship would go into warp speed, and there was a whorl of crystal on the window that looked like a giant thumb print, and I watched the time on my ipod change--I started to panic that I would never get off the plane and I would be trapped hurtling through space forever. But then the couple next to me started arguing about where they parked and the best way to get the car--the mundanity of their argument snapped me back into reality which was a huge relief. My paranoia was reaching fever pitch.
Sidenote: I'm not crazy in the clinical sense, although after I watched A Beautiful Mind I literally questioned everyone and everything. No one I know is a figment of my admittedly wildly overactive imagination. So far.
My sense of time is obviously completely left of center, but I don't blame myself. I think our society, to an extent, is obsessed with time. Being on time. Running out of time. Time to go, time to leave, a time to fly, a time to die, stopping time, so little time, wasting time, we're all on the clock all the...time. I haven't decided yet if I spend too much time or too little time thinking about time. Where I want to be in ten years' time. What should I do in the next hour? The next day, the next week. Planning things out. Next thing I know, I'm no longer on time.
There are worse things than getting lost in the present, which I do quite often and which accounts, for the most part, my proclivity towards lateness.** This must also be what makes time fly for me, but on second thought, maybe it isn't the present I get lost in but rather my own thoughts. Resisting my time warp of a mind is futile, I know--I've tried many times to control what and how I think but it takes a supreme effort to wrangle my noggin into good behavior. I have just decided the answer to my own question, earlier. I was thinking about it while I was writing the rest of this, I couldn't help it. But here it is. It isn't that I spend too much time or too little time contemplating time itself, but it's that I think about time from a place of fear. The whole world, my whole life, is dictated by time and I clearly I'm afraid I won't have enough of it.
This is a Lauren Turns 20 moment in the making! I've just now come to the realization that I can't live in the moment while I'm worrying about the next one, that I can't make the most of my time if I can't embrace the inevitability of an end to all of it. How morbid and perversely invigorating! Tomorrow I will wake up and I will undoubtedly hit the snooze button at least four times. But then finally I'll ask myself not what it is that makes me busy, but how I will make myself busy, how I will make the most out of each day. What it is exactly that is important to me and how I can make each second mean something. Maybe if I do that, then I won't have to be afraid that I'm wasting time. Clearly that is the problem. And now I have a solution.
But I still will be pissed about spring forward. It's just obnoxious.
*I like to think that I'm a healthy mix of skeptic and blind faith believer, but I'm becoming more of a skeptic. I have too many friends who have capitalized on my gullibilty for far too long. **Part of the Lauren Turns 20 Program is forcing myself to be on time. This is far easier said than done, but I try really hard. Except in the morning. Then all bets are off.