Time goes by in a flash, except it doesn’t

Today is the 100th day of 2022. April 10, 2022. I remember when 2022 was the far-distant future. Heck, if I lived to 2022, I’d be closing in on my 70th birthday. Are you kidding me?

Come on, I remember watching 2001: A Space Odyssey and thinking it was about the far-distant future. If you really push me, I’ll confess that I read 1984 and prayed that THAT far-distant future could be avoided. (Actually, 1984 was a pretty good year and far less totalitarian than today.)

Dwelling on what became of our vision of the far-distant future makes it feel like the years went by in a flash. But, you know, a year is a very long time. 

For that matter, an hour is a long time. The other day (actually, earlier this morning as I write this) I wrote “A possible first chapter,” the 533-word blog post I posted April 7, in less than an hour. There are dozens of stories about musicians or poets who have a huge hit single and admit, “I never thought that would happen. I banged the darn thing out in 20 minutes.” There’s an idea: An album of 12 hit songs whose composers claim they wrote in 20 minutes. You could title it Four Hours of Miracles. OK, give me 20 minutes to come up with a better title.

A month is a long time. On March 10 it was still winter, the NCAA tournament field had not been selected, almost nobody knew anything about the St. Peter’s basketball team, Will Smith was known as a talented actor and gentle man, and — you get the idea. A lot happens in any given month.

Time seems to go by in an instant, until you remember where you were and who you are at the beginning of that time. We are approaching the 10th anniversary of moving into our brand new home, and it feels like it went by in a flash, until I look up and realize that the books I’ve written and/or published take up 9 inches of shelf space that would have been 2 inches in April 2012. I look out the window and see the fence we built around the back yard so the dogs could run and play without a leash or our supervision. I walk into the basement and sit down in the entertainment room or lie down in the bedroom or use the bathroom where concrete and storage area existed when we moved in. All of those things have been there for as long as I can remember, but they did not exist 10 years ago, and it occurs to me that 10 years does not “flash” by.

It feels like 100 days zipped by in an instant, but look how much has changed already. Most people in the USA didn’t give Ukraine a thought on Jan. 1. Here in Green Bay we were glibly making plans for cheering the Packers in the upcoming Super Bowl. Placed in that context, it feels like a long time ago, and it was.

It’s noon and I should stop here to feed the dogs their lunch. I think it was 11:35 that I started wondering when the 100th day of the year is, looked it up and typed the first sentence of this blog post. Do you see, now, how much you can do when you take the time?

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