Student Essay on The Scarcity of Time

The Scarcity of Time

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This world is one of endless deadlines: e-mails and phone calls to return, tests to study for, people to meet, and papers to write. No member of society is immune to this scarcity of time; everyone operates in a rush. This culture is time-obsessed.

The attempts to save time are incessant. During a normal commute to work, people will be talking on cell phones, applying makeup or shaving, listening to the radio, driving a vehicle, while simultaneously making a mental note of all that must be accomplished that day. Whenever time is squandered or not used to its full potential, there is an inevitable feeling of frustration. There is no time to be trapped in a traffic jam, no time to wait 15 seconds for the web page to load, no time to wait for walk signal at the crosswalk. Time's meaning is irrelevant, only its abundance is important.

Society itself has attempted to adapt to this shortage of time. Music videos entertain its viewers in three-minute intervals; commercials pack together messages urging people to buy their product into quarter-minute clips; newscasts have been condensed to fit their two-minute allocated period. The message must be clear and concise, because people have acquired short-attention spans that require intense stimulation, and anything moderately paced seems obsolete.

But, in spite of everything, the scarcity of time will always exist. Never will society be satisfied with the time it has. Never will individuals cease to believe that "The more time you have on your hands, the less important you must be," that the amount number of things in which one is involved somehow validates who that person is. Never will society seek to understand the meaning or relevance of time. Instead, it will remain by blinded by its own compulsive intolerance and impatience.