Thursday, 28 August 2008

Have you ever wondered...

...what you would do with all the time you waste, if you got it back?

"Waste?" you incredulate. "I don't WASTE time! I simply misappropriate and exploit an opportunity that arises in the intercourse of everyday life." Or something like that.

So waste. What is it? Time. What's that? How do the two fit together with a handy preposition and what does it mean?

According to the poster on the loo door at church, the average westerner spends three years of their life on the loo. Three years! Now, personally, I do not consider bowel evacuation a waste of time (pun only sort of intended).

What about sleeping? Wiki answers reliably tell me, complete with bad grammar, that the average (American) human spends 1/3 of their life sleeping. I like being awake, and therefore I must accept that some sleeping needs to be done, and unfortunately cannot all be done at once, as Amelie believed. A third is a lot though, but that's still only eight hours a night. And who hasn't slept for 10 or 12 hours? Perhaps those extra hours spent dozing, lazing, dreaming in bed could be considered a waste.

Of course, the obvious one is television. I've recently bought the Hustle dvds for series 1 and 2. In the holidays I watched my way through both seasons of Dark Angel. I've seen them before, but who cares, let's watch them again, just because... I've been watching Arrested Development, Red Dwarf and Torchwood as well. And that isn't to mention the things I watch on tv. And the movies. Now, that I think is an arguable waste of time.

What is or isn't a waste of time is not my point. That's for you to decide. But what would you do if you could get the 31 hours you spent watching Dark Angel back? Or the 75 hours watching House. Or the 13 hours watching all the Star Wars'. Or the 4 hours a day you spend on Facebook. Or the 5 hours a week you spend drooling over dvds, cds or games in jb.

I'm not going to stop watching movies, tv or reading books. But I know there are far better things I could do with my time, and I'll try to use my time better, with less procrastination, and more proactivation. It's not going to come back, appear magically as the 53rd calendar week, but we should work harder at not misappropriating future time. It's easy to think, "yeah yeah, I'll start tomorrow", but seriously, tomorrow never comes. The time it takes to watch House s. 1-5 is more than the hours worked by some kids in developing countries in a week*.

If you know I've updated my blog, you are probably trawling the internet, or have an rss feed that tells you everything that's going on in the world. Now I love to see all the news that comes in over the day, to see what's happening in the world, and I would love to be able to help where I see pain, but it's not going to happen if I just keep saying "tomorrow, I'll stop just repeating what I've already done and go and do something new." Have to make a move now, or else it will never happen. Now is always there, so it can never be too late to change now, but don't leave it till later, because that ain't gonna show.

*If you're an avid House watcher, don't be offended, I could have picked something else like Lost, but then this disclaimer would read "If you're an avid Lost watcher, don't be offended, I could have picked something else like House, but then this disclaimer would read....."

If you like some of the words created for this entry, please feel welcome to adopt them and circulate them in the wider community. There is no copyright on 'incredulate' or 'proactivation', and while I generally disagree with 'verbation' (the creation of verbs from nouns or adjectives), there is a time and a place, meaning, here and now.

Little time was wasted on this entry if it makes you think about how you spend your time. Do not force me to be a hippocrit by not doing so, thus making it a waste of time spent writing.

Read, Reflect, React.