This is where the time goes

When I was a teenager, some of my favorite moments involved my family gathering around the table to play a game. Scattergories, Pictionary, any number of card games — but the times that really stood out were when we played Rummikub.

If you’ve never played: It’s a lot like a card game where you collect sets of the same number or suit. Only in Rummikub, you use tiles, and instead of starting with five or seven cards, you start with 14 tiles. And that’s just to start — you can wind up with many more tiles in your hand, leaving you with countless options for a play.

When it’s your turn, your brain spins like mad, trying to explore all the different possibilities, analyzing and predicting potential outcomes, determining which result would provide the best . . .

“This is where the time goes.”

Until Dad interrupts. You’re not paying attention to time; you’re paying attention to the game. We respect each other a bunch, and we know there’s a healthy amount of brainpower around the table. The game is fun, but we’re here to win, so the consequences of each move are crucial. Of course it’s taking a while — one errant move could cost me the game! What’s more important than winning the game?

“This is where the time goes.”

To this day, it’s a phrase that invokes immediate laughter in our house. It’s a good-natured ribbing to get a move on, that whatever it is you’re working on may need thought, but it also needs action. Prepare all you want, but even the best plan doesn’t mean anything if you never set it in motion.

And so that’s why this blog is now part of my life. Enough sitting around thinking, “I wonder if anybody’s ever thought of things this way,” only to let the idea bounce around in my own head because I figure I didn’t have a place to express it.

Well, the outlet is here. It’s time to act.

Now, this is where my time goes.

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