Near 500 Words: Instantly

Now there’s a word that has a certain cockiness to it. You say, “I want it, and I want it. Now.” What you really mean is INSTANTLY.

I know capital letters mean that I am screaming. Well, that’s what we’re doing. I used to work in a print shop. Believe me. It’s a high stress job. Many, and I mean many, wanted their jobs done now. They did not want to wait a day. No matter what it took. And they were not willing to pay for them. And they wanted them on the cheap.

We live in an Instantly Society. We’ve gotten so used to high speed internet God help us if we had to go back to dial-up. If a web page takes a minute or two to load, that’s too long.

Back in the long ago once-upon-a-time, we wrote letters. Letters took some time for thought about just the right wording to get across what we wanted to say. Then it might take a week or more to get from the sender to the receiver. But it was appreciated. We knew someone cared enough to put in the time and energy.

The internet came along and suddenly we were writing emails. We reread them carefully to make sure we were saying what we wanted to be saying. In those early days, we double checked to make sure the email was going to who we meant it to go to. Then we pressed send. Within five minutes, it might go to the end of the world and bounce back to the neighbor down the street. We were amazed.

Now we quickly type our text, press send and it is immediately received. There’s a whole different word, immediately. It’s not quite as fast as instantly. It’s a close second. We may have accidentally sent it to our boss but it gets there immediately. And that immediately might have gotten us into beaucoup trouble.

These days our impatience has no boundaries. Come Thanksgiving we’re going to be on the web shopping at Amazon to get that deal. It’s over in fifteen seconds. Or we order and expect the package to arrive in fifteen minutes. Transporter beam style. Or by drone. We order gifts on Christmas Eve at 11:59. Santa had better deliver them at 12:01 a.m. After all, we’ve cleaned the chimney.

We go to the latest dating site and we look for instantaneous love. This guy is too short. I’m six feet and he’s five-eleven-and-a-half. This girl is smiling too much. Nobody can be that happy. Finally we agree to meet up and our expectations are quashed. It was not instanteous love. We’ve forgotten that relationships take time.

So here’s a bit of advice:


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