What a waste

Published 9:07 pm Wednesday, October 21, 2009

“What a waste.”

People say that because we waste several things.

Time, for example. Each day has 24 hours, so we are allotted 168 hours each week. Take off 40 hours for work (if you’re lucky) to 120 and then 56 hours a week if you’re lucky enough to get eight hours’ sleep per night.

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So we’ve got 64 hours each week to live the rest of our lives. Pack into those 64 hours personal hygiene, household chores, family time and eating, and there’s precious little time remaining to relax or for personal fulfillment (hobbies, sports, extra activities, etc.).

So whenever we get wrapped up in things that take away from those hours, we’re wasting time. And plenty of things exist in the outside world to steal that time.

The Internet and its many distractions are probably the greatest wasters of time. The World Wide Web started off innocently enough with e-mail and forums. Then came games and puzzles. Now role-playing scenarios like Farm Town or Mafia Wars keep computer users glued to the screen for hours.

Wasting time.

The Internet, however, isn’t all bad. Trent Hamm writes a blog called “The Simple Dollar” designed to help people from wasting their money. Of his 14 rules, No. 3 is to stop wasting time.

Hamm says planning before work and taking notes during work keeps focus on the tasks that need to be completed. He also recommends meditation, but that’s too close to taking a nap for some people.

What free time you have, Hamm says, should be spent on things that help you grow personally and that are enjoyable. Like reading, volunteering, spending time with family, taking classes.

To make the jump from relaxing to growing personally takes motivation, For some sports editors, lots of motivation. That’s tricky, however, because you need to be motivated toward something you like with attainable goals, or you set yourself up for failure.

Failure sends you back to relaxing. Or wasting time.

“What a waste.”

Another thing people waste is other people. Look at University of Connecticut cornerback Jasper Howard.

Howard had just helped UConn beat Louisville during the Huskies’ homecoming last Saturday. So to celebrate, he went to a dance sponsored by the school. About 300 people were there.

Somebody pulled a fire alarm, and everyone went spilling out into the street. There, a fight started between students and non-students.

Howard was stabbed. A single wound to the abdomen killed him.

Howard of Miami was only 20 years old.

What a waste.

Buster Wolfe is sports editor of The Selma Times-Journal. Contact him at 410-1736 or e-mail at buster.wolfe@selmatimesjournal.com.