Time, revisited

A couple years ago, I wrote this:

Time is always moving, but it doesn’t fly. It doesn’t even meander. It stretches and contracts and flows and fits into whatever mold you need it to fit into.

I called that post Tempus tabescet — “Time melts.”

A couple months later, I wondered if I was stuck somewhere else in time — my mid-20s, or whether I might be willing to take lessons forward.

The things that are behind us have shaped us, and continue to shape us. It’s up to us whether not only our tastes evolve as time passes, but also whether we continue to learn new things as we grow older.

I’ve recently read Present Shock, by Douglas Rushkoff. Summary point: This post publishes the morning of April 22, 2020, but if you’re reading it for the first time on the evening of September 18, 2032, it doesn’t matter that it posted 12 years ago, it’s new now.

In fact, everything is happening now. If you’re reading a book, the weight of the unread pages on the right shifts to the the weight of read pages on the left. Not so if you’re reading on Kindle (or your Nook or whatever): The completion numbers show, but it doesn’t really feel or look different. You’re always in the same place; only the words change.

As I write this, much of America has been under a stay-at-home order for a month or more. We’re coming on five weeks where I am. Time’s passing, but it seems to be going slower. I’m working my regular schedule. Our daughter is growing, developing. We walk the neighborhood a lot. There are fewer cars on the road. There are no planes in the sky. It’s peaceful. I hope we keep some of these things.

Time always moves at the same rate. We can decide how to measure it, or not. We can decide how to use it, or not. But it will march on. The Earth will keep spinning, and keep rotating around the sun. The moon will wax and wane.

While that’s happening, it’s always going to be now. You’re currently reading this sentence. Now you’re currently reading this one.

Make the most of your nows.


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