I've got a confession to make: I have a problem with being on time. In previous posts, I have hinted at my tendency of never being prompt, but I have downplayed how chronic my condition is.
Ever since I was a child and well into my adulthood, this self-imposed burden has at times rendered me a pariah among my punctual acquaintances. While they often assure me that arriving a few minutes late is no big deal, I know that in my heart of hearts, as they stare at me with their critical eyes, they lie.
You would think the solutions to this tardiness would be simple. "Get a watch!" a member from the invisible audience suggests.
But I've already got one.
"Set the alarm for an earlier time than the actual designated time!" shouts another as a helpful proposal.
Nope. Doesn't work. On the contrary, it's worse! Knowing about the extra time will further perpetuate the lackadaisical response on taking my sweet time.
"Well, then," the frustrated audience member exclaims though gritted teeth, "why don't you simply stop being so lazy, get off your butt and just GO?"
You are asking me to demonstrate non-existent motivation. Fat chance.
At this point, the audience gives up on this hopeless situation of expecting me to arrive on time and instead decides to claim that I am simply "fashionably late."
But there is no reprieve for the perpetually late. Trying to fight against what comes naturally to us is futile.
Yet despite our stolid nature at habitually disrespecting opening and closing hours and respecting appointments, people can witness some rare occasions in which we make the effort to arrive on time by leaving our homes early.
When those infrequent moments happen, an unfortunate circumstance will occur that impedes our otherwise timely arrival. It discourages us from ever trying to be prompt again.
However, I do not believe that these circumstances are purely coincidental.
Call it what you want: atonement, comeuppance, karma, just desserts, sweet vengeance. These earthly punishments are manifested in a variety of forms.
Today, I shall cover the first form, which involves facing a delay while waiting for a pedestrian crosswalk light to change.
Inevitably, on the one day you find yourself speeding to an appointment as fast as your legs can carry you, heart pounding furiously in your chest and your lungs strained to their full capacity, there will be a red light that brings you to a halt.
To make matters worse, the nefarious soul who was in charge of programming the light has deemed that said light will display the crimson feature for an indefinite period.
An entire lifetime can pass before your eyes as you wait for the little strutting green man to flash into view.
By the time the light changes to green, you'll have aged to the point in which your hypothetical future grandkids will need to assist you in crossing the street.
Realistically, this situation would never happen in France for the French are avid jaywalkers.
Barb the French Bean