Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Some thoughts on waiting.

I’m reading a wonderful book entitled Waiting for Autumn by Scott Blum. I recommend it as a delightful story filled with allegory and fantasy, but take it as a delightful read and wonder at the possibilities it offers.

The title engendered thoughts about waiting.

Someones always saying to us "wait a minute" or "wait up" or "Wait for me". So we do! We wait for a minute, or ten or a half hour.

Several years ago a systems analyst fed all kinds of waiting data into a computer and concluded that normal people get very abnormal when waiting in line. They get angry and irritable.

It's not just the line around the block that does us in. There are other kinds of lines, the ones formed in our mind. Waiting for someone to pay us the money they owe. Parents waiting for teenagers to get home.

In some of the bigger cities you can pay people to do your waiting for you. Some supermarkets now show commercials on a television monitor as we wait in line. Apparently it works. They say when we wait we get bored. With boredom we eat. It's no wonder wait and weight sounds the same.

When the computer added and subtracted all of waiting data it came up with a surprising statistic. In an average life span we spend up to five years, just waiting.

Wait a minute, will you. I want to check something and then go back to reading my book.


William Mirola said...

Waiting for Autumn sounds like quite an engaging book, Mr. Smith.

I find that there are two forms of waiting, however. There is the kind that you describe that derives from bureaucracies, consumerism, and other aspects of contemporary life that perpetually seem to ask us to speed up whatever we are doing and then wait, generating the boredom and other feelings of frustration and anxiety.

There is also the waiting that comes from deep and patient anticipation. The waiting through the dark of winter to see which of my flower bulbs have survived the squirrels to showcase their spring beauty...The waiting that comes in the Christian liturgical seasons of Advent and Lent...The waiting for the lengthening of daylight following the winter solstice...The waiting for another summer's cycle of fruit and vegetables in the farmer's market here in Indiana...and of course there is my favorite kind of waiting: waiting for autumn with its warm days, wonderful colors, and crisp nights. Even in high summer, something deep inside waits for those days to return.

Rose said...

My thoughts on waitng:
1) Hurry up and wait!!..mostly about contemporary life ugh!!! hate to wait.
2)"Waiting" for the change of season,flower bulbs,fruits and vegetables, etc..this is actually anticipation at its finest!!

Free Blog CounterEnglish German Translation