Is Time your Darth Vader?

January 5, 2010

Maybe it’s just me, but I’ve rediscovered a certain fondness for 80’s music and childhood movies such as Star Wars and the Empire Strikes Back. The sights and sounds of my childhood bring me back to a moment in time when I wasn’t saddled by imminent concerns such as paying the bills or having insurance. It was a time of black and white, of evil and good, of Darth Vader and Obi-Wan.

For many of us, time itself represents a certain lack in our lives. We rush about in a time-starved state, yet rarely do we ask ourselves ‘What’s the rush?’ As I sat down with my kids to watch Star Wars with them for their first time this week, I was shocked to learn they already knew the characters. Although they had never seen the actual movie before, they had played a Star Wars video game at a friend’s house.

I couldn’t help but feel slightly disappointed. Where was the mystery of discovering the Empire and all its weirdish characters if you’ve already seen them in a predetermined video game? It made me realize my children’s memories will be distinctly different than mine. Such is the nature of time. And that’s okay, too.

The memories my children will hold are of taking a walk by moonlight through the snow in the Alps. They will recall the moment right before opening their Christmas presents and the smell of the wood smoke as they ate pickles in front of the fire.

Each of us owns our own moment in time. The discovery might be different, but the excitement is still the same.

As 2010 unfolds, I am reminded of the social contract we have made with the clock. It is our choice as to whether we view time as good (Obi-Wan) or evil (Darth Vader). Either way, may the force in the power of slow be with you!

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