- Education and Science»
IT'S ABOUT TIME
RIDING ON THE ATOMIC TRAIN
I would like to stop and smell the roses...lay in the grass and watch the clouds float past...sit and listen to the wind speak to me. But Old Man Time is picking up speed...streaking through the years like an atomic train, and life has become a blur of broken images streaming past window frames.
Maybe that description is a little dramatic, but the sense of accelerated time is a phenomenon that seems to plague us as we grow older, which hardly seems fair...after all, we are moving slower. At least some of us are. I'm laughing, but I do find this phenomenon interesting.
I did a little research on the subject of Time, and grilled a few really old people (anyone older than me), hoping to gain a better understanding of why time seems to slow down and speed up. This is what I discovered.
Time is an enigma without a definitive definition. Theories abound on the subject and they are as varied as the philosophers and physicists who offer them. There is more information on the subject than I have time, space, or education to decipher here. Still...I do enjoy contemplating the paradoxes of existence. I suppose I experience an adrenaline rush as I try to uncover the truth about things I don't fully understand. But it seems the more answers I pursue, the more questions I have...a common dilemma ...I know.
So - what is time? A year has passed...what does that mean? I am not a physicist and my brain is starting to freak out - that is why I am writing this. I have to do something with the stuff that leaks out. Okay...let's move on.
My research safari involved one web site: The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. I have added this link - http://www.iep.utm.edu/t/time.htm- for those who are interested in the subject. I found the material easy to read and positively fascinating; however I am not going to expound on all the different theories I encountered in the article. I will summarize the information this way : time might be physical... or possibly physiological...maybe linear or maybe circular...it could be a measure of change or it might be change itself. Then, there is always a possibility that time doesn't exist at all. I could go on, but I'm sure almost everyone is familiar with at least some of these theories. Who doesn't watch The Discovery Channel, The Science Channel, or The History Channel these days?
So much for research.
Grilling my friends and family members did not provide me with any conclusive answers either. So I am left with my own reasoning and experience to make sense of this puzzle. This is what I have concluded.
There is truth in every theory.
When I was a child and anxiously waited for something special, an hour seemed like a day. When I wanted to postpone something unpleasant, time would speed up and the dreaded moment would arrive much to soon. Generally, a year seemed like a very long time and growing old was beyond my sense of reality. My minds eye told me I would always be young. I am still receiving the same message regardless of the lies my mirror tells me, or the fact that my life is full of little people calling me grandma. Nope...no aging here. I've just slipped into the Twilight Zone...I'll be fine when I wake up.
The bottom line is this - the speed at which time passes for each of us is relative to a given circumstance. As we get older time often seems to speed up, maybe because we are moving slower, or maybe subconsciously we are simply in a hurry to reach our final destination.
It seems most days I'm riding the atomic train and trying to make sense of the blur out the window. By the end of the day I'm a little dizzy, and when it gets dark I have to lay down.
Here is a silly little poem I wrote about a very busy day.
Tic-tock. Tick-tock - I'm watching the clock.
A minute here - a minute there
hurry, hurry there's no more to spare.
So much to do... and places to be.
No end in sight of the chores for me.
My hours are crowded with all this and all that,
Till I'm frazzled and boggled, and swallowing gnats.
I rush...I run...I hurry...I fly,
Lamenting the things I have to pass by.
Life spends my days as it surely sees fit,
Without notice of my will or consent.
My mind's in a whirl and my body groans,
I'll have to ignore this ache in my bones.
When will it end and where will it lead:
This shortage of time and all of these needs?
Ah...gee whiz...it's a quarter to eight!
If I don't hurry, I'm gonna be late.
Tick - tock. Tick-tock - I'm watching the clock