By Gordon Holmes
Mine is very short these days.
To be honest, it was never that big to begin with, but over the years it has steadily shrunk and in recent times, I have noticed that it has diminished to such an extent that I’m not sure I even have it any more.
I guess it never really concerned me when I was younger - I realised there was an issue of course, but you made the best of what you had back then, took the good with the bad and got on with things.
But apparently, this is quite a common complaint in men over 40 and there’s no real cure, it’s something you have to live with.
And while I wouldn’t say I lose any sleep over it, there are times now when I find myself wishing I had a little bit more.
So what is this part of me that is so sadly lacking?
Patience, my dears, patience ...
No, I don’t mean hang around and I’ll tell you eventually, I mean actual patience, or the complete lack of to be more accurate.
As I said I have never possessed much of this ‘virtue’ but having reached the full-blown grumpy middle-aged man stage (some may say that happened 20 years ago...), I find that my intolerance and impatience have reached new unimagined levels.
Anything that makes me wait longer than is necessary, anybody who doesn’t do something in the quickest time posssible, any situation that causes delay or disrupts my intentions - all are likely to get my heckles, blood pressure and stress levels up and provoke disproportionate responses of indignation and grumpiness.
Clearly, no-one likes queuing - anyone who does has a whole different issue to deal with - but I literally HATE queuing.
In a fair, equal society, I know it is necessary, you wait your turn and everyone gets there eventually, but that doesn’t mean I can’t have disdain for the time it wastes.
In fact, and much to my horror I have to say, I can now hear myself ‘tsking’ and ‘harumphing’ if I am in a queue that seems to be moving slower than what is acceptable. I’m not sure how I think that will help the situation but at least everyone else knows I’m not happy with it ...
And as for queue jumpers - well, pond life as far I’m concerned, if I’m having to wait, don’t even think about trying to get there before me.
Then there is technology, which has made modern life so much faster - aye right...
It has when it’s working but using it every day in my job, there are moments when I want to pick up the PC and chuck it out the nearest window. I have also developed an unnatural phobia about egg timers after far too long spent staring at one on the screen while the computer decides whether it’s actually going to do something or not.
Better not mention being put on hold on phone calls, or the joys of ‘waiting’ rooms at doctors or hospitals.
I really do wish I could change, in some ways I have as having two small children has tested my patience in whole new ways but they, at least, are worth the effort.
So sorry if my impatience impacts on you and I better go now as deadline approaches... oh wait... oh no... there’s that damned egg ti