How do you deal with boredom in your life?

“Are we there yet?” The movie Shrek was so popular that it has immortalized this line: “Are we there yet.” Every parent and child can identify with the phrase. The movie was very interesting in that people of all ages enjoyed it. We have all been on a long trip and perhaps not very far into it when we hear a young one say “are we there yet?” This phrase illuminates the difference in time perception between the old and the young. A year is a short time for an older person and indeed, they often seem to go by in a blur. For a young child, an hour seems like a long time and they become quite restless and bored very quickly. How often have you heard an older person wail: “I’m bored?” Well, maybe too often for some of you.

We took our one year old grandson on a trip with us to Korea a number of years ago. The trip was a constant effort (much fun though) to entertain Sam and keep him from being bored. You know how one year olds get when they are bored. It was also a constant effort to keep him happy and occupied. I will say that many other passengers and much of the crew helped out. Sam was a hyperactive one year old who seemed to never tire from wanting attention or help in exploring the plane and all of its occupants. I have been on many overseas trips and most of us “old” folks just sit and patiently wait for the plane to land. It might be 26 hours but we read, write, nap and somehow pass the time. I don’t think it ever occurs to us that we are bored, although we might wonder when we “will be there.” I think it is fun to watch the little plane fly across the computer screen as I get closer to my destination.

Boredom seems to be a condition of youth. As we age, the weeks start to fly by. Then the months fly by and finally the years by. Older people are too busy to be bored. When you are older, who has time to be bored? Boredom would be a luxury for some of us now. When was the last time you were bored? Do you ever have time to be bored? When did you outgrow boredom?

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