It’s a cute ad on TV: two young adults are amicably chatting from their respective dwellings while they blast each other in an online video game. They agree to meet up later, maybe go for a swim.

It looked like fun. I could play that video game, I thought.

Then again, when would I have time? I’ve already got a lot to keep me busy in my free time.

That got me to thinking about time — again — as in the amount of time I might have left in my life. I’m guessing we all think about that more as we get older.

I don’t want to waste the time I have left.

Not that I am criticizing the younger folks. They probably have a lot of time left, if they are lucky. At least, they think they have a lot of time left. They have yet to discover that life flashes by quickly. Sixty looks a long way off when you are 20.

And who I am to judge others. To each their own, yes?

I started thinking about the time I have wasted in my life, and how I would do things differently if I could turn back the proverbial hands of time and wake up as a teen in my bedroom. I won’t bore you with the details, but suffice to say, I would get a better education and devote more time to making the world a better place. And I would NEVER EVER get married — the biggest time suck of all!

There weren’t as many time sucks back in the 1960s as there are today. Now it seems everyone wants a piece of your time — from the denizens of Twitter and Facebook and Instagram to video-game creators and all manner of online diversions. You could spend all your waking hours online, playing games and chatting with people around the world. And lots of people do just that.

And one day they’ll be in their 60s — if they live that long — wondering about time, too. Where did it all go? How best to spend the remaining time left?

Good parents talk about time management with their kids, I hope. I did not have such good parents, being raised in various foster homes (for money) and not getting proper guidance. Perhaps it should be taught in elementary (grade) school, and then again in high school.


Something else that should be taught early is how to identify poisonous plants — beyond poison ivy and poison oak, which seems to be on most people’s radar. But when I was a child, nobody taught me about dangerous plants like the giant hogweed (above), which is quite common in these parts of the world.

It’s a miracle I didn’t come in contact with the giant hogweed when I was a kid. I lived in the ‘burbs, which were not very developed back then. On the weekends, my foster parents would kick me out of the house right after lunch and tell me not to come back until dinner time. I spent a lot of time alone tramping around in the fields and woods near my house — killing time, essentially. (How sad is that, in view of the first part of this post, eh?)

I’m hoping today’s parents and educators are more savvy and are teaching young people about the natural dangers in their environments.

We’re talking a couple of hours of education here, maybe once in elementary school and once more as a refresher in high school.

‘Cause the giant hogweed and other plants can ruin your life in a matter of minutes.

— Jillian

Photo credit: So pretty, so deceptive: Don’t touch the giant hogweed. (Appaloosa/Wikipedia)