Opinion: Life moves quickly in rearview mirror
Tue Aug 07, 2012
So, with this being our last issue of the summer, I’ve decided that today would be a perfect time to give a recap of my vacation. Here goes nothing: Over the summer I met a beautiful Australian girl at a beach, who was aptly named Sandy, and we fell in love. It was one of the first times that I felt like I completely clicked with someone. We spent the entire summer together in pure bliss singing show tunes. Unfortunately, when the summer ended, she had to go back to her family half-a-world away. So there I was broken hearted on the first day of my senior year at Rydell High School when Sandy reappeared. It turns out her parents decided to not return to Australia, and we were reunited. The year wasn’t a completely smooth ride, but through our ups and downs (and eventually an awesome drag race scene), we decided that we loved each other and flew away in a magical car whilst credits rolled in yearbook style. Okay, so let’s be honest. I am not Danny Zuko, I can’t dance and my summer did not go according to the plot of “Grease” (except for that one awesome drag race scene, that happened), but wouldn’t it be better if it did? To be completely forthcoming, I spent my summer working. Be it here at the paper or at a restaurant in town, the majority of my days were spent indoors either writing stories or carrying scolding hot plates to waiting customers. Every week, I had a day or two off, but I never got to have the ideal summer of bliss. I can’t complain too much, because I took these jobs by choice. Regardless of the fact that I needed the money to pay rent, I made a conscious decision to work as much as I did. I could have done nothing at all and just spent my summer bohemian-style, living from couch to couch. Unfortunately, I decided to be responsible. The word “responsible” wasn’t really an adjective that I thought would ever be put upon me when I was growing up. I’m the youngest of three, so, naturally, I was spoiled. While my brother and sister had to eat whatever was served, I had the gall, and for some reason the ability, to request whatever meal I wanted and somehow get it. They were only allowed to watch TV for an hour a day, while I was somehow able to finagle a second or third. At almost every turn, I somehow came out the better of the three of us, because (at least in my view) I was adorable, and who can say no to an adorable kid? So here I am now, a little less adorable and a little more tired. While I’m writing this, I’m reminded of the old Dr. Seuss quip of “How did it get so late so soon?” It seems like only a few days ago that I finished my last exam, sold back my last textbook and popped my feet up on my coffee table waiting for relaxation to set it. But it hasn’t been two weeks, or even two months — it’s been an entire summer. Three months gone in a flash. I don’t like to complain about time moving fast, it just feels cliché. Most of the time when I read a “Ferris Bueller”-type diatribe about how quickly life runs past, I find myself getting bored. No one realizes that their life goes fast when they’re in the moment of it, but rather they only feel cheated by the ticking seconds when they’re looking back longingly upon them. And that time spent pondering about wasted time only further wastes more time. It’s a cycle. But today, I can’t help but look in hindsight. I want to have the time and the summer I dreamt of having. A summer should be an escape. My summer was mostly spent working (with the exception of watching “Grease” several times last week), and I wish I had done more. I could have spent more time with my girlfriend or seen more friends or attempted to get a more even tan. But I made my choice and there’s not much use being worried over it. I guess what I’m trying to get at is that time really is ethereal. It’s a concept that’s forever slipping through our fingertips. And while looking back on what you missed is a good way to complain about how unfair things are, it ultimately wastes more time. There’s only two weeks left until we’re all back in classrooms staring at a whiteboard. So don’t waste that time. Go out and have fun, stay in and watch a movie. Just do anything but waste that time. — Preston Peeden is a senior in history. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.