A Sixty Second Eternity

Posted: June 2, 2011 in Uncategorized

A lot can happen in sixty seconds. Depending on your frame of mind, sixty seconds can seem like an eternity.

Greg had wished more minutes of his life away than he cared to evoke. The times he’d wished the week would accelerate itself into the weekend, firing him like a human cannon ball, through to Friday evening, even though it was Monday morning.

When he had a blood test; waiting for an important letter; sat in traffic during the morning rush hour, the time seemed to last longer than a drought in the Sahara.

He wished away the minutes like a child wishing they’d lose their wobbly tooth, not realising once all the baby teeth had gone, there was nothing left other than the gaping holes. Greg remembered wishing away more time, just so those holes would be filled with ‘BIG Boys teeth’, little did he realise then, that the prospect of adulthood was hurtling towards him at a hundred miles per hour.

Yesterday, Greg tried to savour the last mouthful of chocolate cake, wishing the taste, smell and indulgence could last forever. Intent on sucking it, rather than chewing on initial contact, it stuck to the roof of his mouth, as if to preserve the flavour for longer. Instead it just ended up in-between his teeth and needing a fair amount of pressure from his tongue to scrape it from its plastered state.

On the other side of the spectrum, those sixty seconds can go like an olympic sprinter in the hundred metre race. Greg’s early morning game of tag with his alarm clock, was a prime example. He insisted on pressing the snooze button at least four times before giving into the fact that those extra minutes in bed were wasted.  Although he thought he was outwitting the electronic time telling device, he was self-consciously worrying he’d begin to press the snooze button in his sleep and thus missing the alarm altogether.

He wished the sixty seconds between Jenni turning on the kitchen tap, to his hot water in the shower turning ice cold was longer, but it wasn’t and the early morning squeals from the bathroom could be heard in the neighbourhood like clockwork.

He reminisced about the lost hours too. Sat drinking in the pub with friends, to then wake the next morning still fully dressed and unaware of the hours between then and last orders at the bar. The hours lost because of those precious lie-ins he’d enjoyed snuggled under the sheets with Jenni, or even before their time together, where he could sprawl in the shape of a star-fish in the middle of the bed, without anyone complaining from the lack of duvet or space on their side.

All the uncaring or appreciation for the time just wished away, he prayed for just one spare minute.  Just a few second, that’s all it would have taken. Out of all those seconds; minutes; hours; he’d lost he just wanted that sixty seconds back.

He would have said “No”. He could have shaken his head. He could have even walked away. He wished he’d have done all three, but one would have sufficed.

His life was shooting through his mind, like a psychotic hose pipe shooting water full throttle at his face. An unbearable force was pushing against him, like gravity working at a ninety degree angle.

His hands were clammy and he could feel every miniature fine hair, stand on edge over his entire body.

Sixty seconds ago he was a free man.
Sixty seconds ago he was just an uncomplicated bloke.

Now, he was married. Its surprising what can happen in a matter of seconds.

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Comments
  1. FARfetched says:

    I had no idea where this was going… which the almost mundane ending as satisfying as the most fantastical ending could have been!

  2. sonia says:

    I loved the ending! Was expecting something a lot more macabre.

  3. pegjet says:

    Just one, big OUCH. Not that I’m for or against marriage. But that was quite the editorial statement…

    On the other hand, quite a satisfying conclusion. Good job.

  4. collardtimothy says:

    Great ending.

  5. Loved it, loved the ending.

  6. henriettamaddox says:

    ha! Thought he was going to die. Your ending was unexpected and much lighter for a Friday morning.

  7. adampb says:

    Great set up in regards to time and how it plays out in our lives. Everyone can relate to that need.
    Adam B @revhappiness

  8. John Wiswell says:

    Hope it’s a patient lady. He won’t have time for anyone else.

    Last paragraph, “Its” for “It’s”

  9. An interesting take on the relativism of time. I think I agree with everybody else though in that I was thinking there was something more sinister going on…but then again I’m actually happy in my marriage. 🙂

    • marc nash says:

      the story seemed to be akin to your psychotic hose pipe, spraying in all directions as it whips around like a snake, until the ending when a firm hand just shut off the water pressure. Very clever!

  10. David says:

    “It’s” is correct for the last paragraph.

  11. Icy Sedgwick says:

    It’s amazing how much time we do wish away, but I think you managed to capture all the thoughts in his head by comparing the things he wished he could speed up with the things he wanted to savour.

  12. Good story all the way through, and then a good laugh at the end. Well done!

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