I never have enough time.
You don't either.
Nevertheless, when we are presented with this whole extra hour today most of us will spend it sleeping.
I'm sure I will.
And that's just wrong.
Who on their death bed if offered an extra hour to live would say, Thanks, I think I'll take a nap?
This day deserves better.
Why, I've often wondered, isn't today a really big deal?
Why not a national holiday?
Why not the biggest holiday of the year?
Today is 25 hours long for cryin' out loud. And you won't hear even a single firecracker. No champagne corks will pop.
No, except for that extra hour's sleep, we tend to take today right in stride.
The only thing that might make it stand out is if we forget to change our clocks, which by the way usually dawns on us when we are the only person at church for the 9 a.m. service.
What I really like about this day is that, even if in only the smallest of ways, we humans break our bonds today.
Today, we set ourselves free.
Free from the most horrible tyrant mankind has ever known: the tyrant time.
All of our lives time rules. If it isn't time for this, it's time for that. Time to wake up, time to go to bed, time to brush our teeth, time to go to work, time to eat, time to do the dishes, time to take our pills, time to get a check up, time to grow up, time to act our age … okay, I'll stop.
It's been said man is the only animal who goes to sleep when he isn't tired and wakes up when he is. Hurts to hear it put that way, doesn't it?
Our pets surely think we're crazy. No dog or cat would invent something as insulting as the alarm clock.
Yes, we're slaves to time.
And we can't do a thing about it.
Wait a minute (pun not intended).
Didn't we just take our clocks off the wall and set them back an hour?
Who's the slave now, time?
Okay, it's a short-lived triumph. But doesn't that simple act of adding an hour to an autumn day, or taking one away in spring, tell us something?
Doesn't it tell us that the only power time has is the power we give it?
And, therefore, can't we take some of that power away?
Yes we can. That's what I say.
My personal method of sticking it to time is to do my best to live outside of it.
It's easier than you think.
Several years ago I read: I never knew how much time I had until I threw my watch away.
I immediately took the watch off my wrist – admittedly a cheap Timex – and tossed it in a waste basket. And except for a brief period about 12 years ago when I bought a pricey Movado thinking I needed to impress some people, I have not worn a watch since. Don't you wind up late for things? people often ask. Actually, I tell them, I'm always early. When you don't have a watch you can't afford to be late.
What I strive for mostly, though, is to make time disappear. That's the ticket.
This concept didn't originate with me, but I have discovered the happiest experiences of my life are when time goes away.
Ironically, the best way to grasp this notion is to think of its opposite. The worst experiences of our lives are when we are most aware of time. Whether it's a toothache or a heart ache nothing slows a clock like pain.
And nothing speeds it up like joy. It speeds it up until it disappears all together.
For example, I have two friends, a husband and wife, who regularly invite me and Mary Kay when she can make it, for late afternoon coffee. We arrive about four and a moment later there's a cup of cappuccino in front of us. A moment later it's 7:30. And we only become aware of that when one of us happens to notice it's become dark outside.
You've been there. The company in the car is so good you're in Philly before you know it. You lift your eyes from a book and discover three hours have vanished. The End pops up on the screen and you swear you just sat down in the theatre.
The key to this is love. You love the movie, you love the book, you love the company. All expressed far more perfectly than I can by Henry Van Dyke:
Time is too slow for those who wait,
Too swift for those who fear,
Too long for those who grieve,
Too short for those who rejoice,
But those who love
Time is not.
It's as simple as that.