The Speed of Time

I’m returning to a favorite topic, the speed of time, because I’ve discovered more about about it.

The speed of time is not universal. As everyone knows, according to the School/Work Principle, time’s speed isn’t constant. When you’re waiting for the school or work day to end, time not only slows, but sometimes goes backward, forcing you to repeat several minutes. Some movies, are like that, too.

Learning of this, the NFL manages to employ this in their football games. The last two minutes of an NFL game often takes as long as most of the rest of the game. My wife can attest to that. She’s endured it. “When are we leaving?” she asks.

“As soon as this game is over.”

“How much is left?”

“Not much.”

That waffling, of course, warns her. “How much time is left?” she asks.

“It’s the last two minutes of the fourth quarter.”

“Okay, I’m going to go bake some cookies.”

Using that as a basis for my research, I confirmed that traffic-jam time drags almost as slow as the final two minutes of an NFL game, or the last ten minutes of work or the school day.  Shopping time remains the slowest of all, though. Even the NFL has not been able to slow time like shopping will do. Figuratively speaking, shopping time can literally last an eternity. I’ve endured several election cycles while I’ve been shopping. I found that having a Fitbit helps deal with shopping time. It doesn’t change the rate of speed, but I can get a couple of million steps in while I’m walking around, waiting.

Waiting in line time is almost as bad as shopping time. I’ve had clothes wear out while I’ve been standing in line to pay for my purchases, especially at Costco. Costco cashier lines exist in a weird time zone of their own where time gets very sluggish. I’ve spent hour-minutes in line, gazing at what others have bought and comparing them to our purchases.

On the other end of it, I’ve discovered some periods of time that pass quickly. Sleep time is very fast. I don’t know how many times I thought, I’ll just sleep for a few more minutes, and then close my eyes, and, snap, forty minutes have elapsed.

Writing time is frequently often as fast. I have three hours to write, I think, and a cuppa coffee. Then I begin, and the next thing I know, writing time is ended, and I still have coffee.

Which is sort of weird. Coffee time by itself seems to flow at an ideal pace. That’s not true for all beverages. I can tell you, beer time goes fast. Sit down to have a beer, and next thing you know, it’s hours later.

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