Monday, June 29, 2009

Your Time or your Life?

Recently, I saw a well dressed woman dart out onto the street and make a mad dash for a bus as it was shifting out of "park" and into "drive". She literally jumped in the way of rush hour traffic in her attempt to catch her ride.

I watch movies. It's possible that some stranger stole her baby and was using that particular bus as his getaway vehicle. Or that this woman has a violently abusive partner that would use her arriving late as an excuse to beat her mercilessly. Maybe she has children she is responsible for picking up at a day care at a specified time?

I also watch the people around me. It is just as likely that this woman was in such a rush to avoid having to wait for the next bus. Given the time of day, and the particular location, her wait would have likely have taken no more than 15 minutes.


Like most things, this has me thinking.

What is so terrible about waiting? Whatever your answer, is it so terrible that it would be worth playing the role of a flattened frog in your own version of frolic-in-traffic Frogger? Or worse yet, for folks who play a slightly modified version of the game from a driver's seat, would it be worth a charge or two of involuntary man-slaughter?

Along that same vein, if getting somewhere on-time is worth risking your life, wouldn't it also be worth packing the night before to make sure you are prepared in the morning, leaving home slightly unkempt if absolutely necessary, accounting for traffic delays when calculating your appropriate departure time, or cutting off your boss and speaking up if she is keeping you at work a little too late?

Most of us remember how important our time is. I can't help but think that we often take the "being alive" part of it all for granted.

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