Traverse City Record-Eagle

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March 2, 2013

Mardi Link: Older and wiser? About time

When my sons were little, they were the ones who asked the questions about how our world worked, not me. I was too busy scrambling for answers to questions like: “Mom, where does the sun go at night?” “Mom, where is God?” “Mom, where is that tuna fish sandwich you put in my backpack last month?”

But now that they’re mostly grown, and can buy their own lunches, I recently looked for some time to ask a few questions of my own.

Well, to be honest I didn’t “look” for the time, if you want to get literal about it, because even back then time wasn’t really lost. It was right there, quietly liquefying under the crush of soccer cleats and crumpled homework. Just like that missing sandwich.

Seems like I always think about time when February turns to March. That’s because we either get an extra day in between the two months if it happens to be a leap year, or we don’t, and are shocked when March arrives. I’m always surprised to see March 1, because every year February seems to suck me into a wormhole with plans to keep me in its gloom forever and ever.

How is it that the shortest month of the year always feels like the longest? That’s one of my new questions that I’d like an answer to.

Another is, why do teenagers, with so much time in front of them, have no patience at all, while really old people whose days are numbered (like me, according to my youngest, who is 16 going on awesome) have patience to spare?

I enjoyed asking the universe these things, but it offered no response. So, I figured that maybe it was because they had already been answered by someone with a bigger brain for this kind of thing than me. Like, say, Albert Einstein.

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