In the subway I noticed a guy with a huge white shopping bag. It turned out he was carrying a 5,000 piece puzzle, depicting an enormous castle in the midst of a valley. It looked like Switzerland.
It baffles me sometimes when I notice so many people trying to pass the time. You’d think that since we’re so pressed for time, we wouldn’t want to squander precious moments on Sudoku or crosswords or, my pet peeve, the dreaded Search-a-Word.
I see a lot of Sudoku and search-a-words on the train, devices that take you away from where you are. Yet another benefit of mass transit – you don’t have to be focused or awake or sober. All you have to do is survive it.
Sometimes on the weekends, Mark and I will cozy up the couch, each with a laptop. He will play World of Warcraft, the hugely popular online game replete with dwarves and quests and monsters.
I will battle it out on an online scrabble game, formulating 7-letter bingos and using the three-letter words I’ve been studying. He will turn to me and ask, ‘baby, can you find me the map for Dazalar in Ironforge? I gotta use my taming rod against the nightsaber stalker.’
Mark spells out the names and I open a new window for a search. Meanwhile, the seconds are ticking down in my game. Often the tv is going on at the same time or we’d be listening to a podcast. We are passing time doing useless things, but at least we are multitasking, doing several useless things at once.
I suppose that is the luxury of leisure – having enough extra time in our lives to fritter away with useless things. Without them, we’d feel like we had no time at all.
Photo by Lisa Danilko. For more great images, click here.