The Waiting Game

Photo by Walter Walraven on Unsplash

I, like most people spend an awful lot, if not inordinate amount of time waiting. Everyday we find ourselves waiting for something or quite often someone. We get up in the morning and wait for the shower to warm up. Head downstairs and wait for the electric kettle or the pot on the stove to boil. We wait for the coffee to percolate or the hot cross buns in the toaster to pop. If we didn’t have time make coffee, we drive to the nearest Tim Hortons or Starbucks to wait our turn for our caffeine fix n’ a bagel. If we have an appointment with anyone, but especially a doctor…we…wait and then wait some more.

Sidebar: If I make a point of scheduling the first appointment of the day with my general practitioner, why should I have to wait at all? I did this specifically so I wouldn’t have to wait. And, if I do, should I not be allowed to invoice said general practitioner or whomever is responsible for my time? I don’t think it’s any coincidence I’ve never seen a clock in a doctor’s office waiting room.

At work, we likewise schedule time for meetings and then wait as people shuffle in from other meetings, as organizers try to figure out how to work the projector, connect to wifi or get everyone connected on the web conference. Often we’re forced to wait for the IT guy to show up and save the day.

If at some point during the day we need to call a technical, billing or other customer service support line, we invariably wait while the calming music loops on, interrupted by the occasional reminder, “We are currently experiencing higher than normal call volumes. Thank you for your patience.”

And this is in fact what is required; patience. Remembering, for all the times we wait on someone, we in turn made someone else wait. The reason we’re in a queue is because everyone else is in a queue.

The question becomes what do we do while we’re waiting? Or should we just appreciate the opportunity to do nothing but wait.

Thoughts? I’ll wait…

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Jeff Riddall

Husband and father of two kidults with a head full of random words and such. Lover of sports, beer, food, long walks & dogs; not necessarily in this order.