பொறுத்தார் பூமி ஆளுவார்.
That is a Thamizh adage transliterated as Poruthaar boomi aaluvaar.

It means that the one who is patient will rule the world.

I belong to a generation of Indians on whom patience was thrust upon. We simply had no choice in the matter. We had to wait in queues for just about everything. I distinctly remember waiting in a queue to purchase a token plate which would enable me to buy a limited quantity of pasturised milk once a day. If one did not have that, one had to compromise with adulterated milk supplied by a monopoly of milkmen. I also remember having booked for an HMT wrist watch and waiting for six months before it was delivered to me. People had to wait for years to get landline telephone connections and to purchase motorcycles and scooters besides cars. The less said the better about queues for booking railway and bus tickets and the planning that had to be undertaken months in advance to reserve tickets for both train and air travel. Such lives taught us patience and also value for things bought at considerable sacrifice.

The present day generation does not believe us oldies when we talk about those days. It cannot visualise those hard times at all because it is now a generation totally used to and demanding instant gratification. In other words, impatient for results. Gone are the days of plodding with the same employer for a life time of employment and retirement. It is rare nowadays to see some youngsters working in the same organisation for more than a few years!

Impatience, resulting in the desperate need for instant gratification, also results in debt of unmanageable proportions leading to stress at young age. In our times, we could not get loans to finance homes and durables, whereas now lenders are chasing prospective buyers with attractive schemes and instalment payment plans to trap them into the instant gratification trap and stress. Such lures even cover vacations!

The attitudes developed on the basis of such impatience manifests in almost all walks of life including the way the young drive nowadays. To state the obvious, such a value system also affects relationships and the way they are broken and new ones started clearly is indicative of a vastly different value system than the one that I grew up in,

Do I envy these young people? To be brutally honest, yes, to an extent, That extent is that things are now available. I will still not buy anything on hire-purchase and the three credit card issuers that I deal with must be very unhappy with me because, I use them more as a convenience than to repay on instalments. I do not envy their lifestyles and stress at all. I am willing to be patient.

Pravin has suggested the topic for this week’s LBC Friday post. You can see what the other writers of the LBC have to say in their respective blogs.  Maria, Pravin and Shackman.

18 thoughts on “Impatience.”

  1. Instant gratification is the desire of the current generation here as well. While not as much as you mentioned, I to remember standing in line and waiting for things. Now – because I buy so many things on line standing in line is even more frustrating these days. While patience is said to be a virtue, at times being overly patient can cause missed opportunities.


  2. a glimpse into your past. i always enjoy that rummy.
    i don’t remember having to stand in lines so much as having to wait to be able to purchase anything. my father refused to fall into the credit trap. if you couldn’t afford it you simply didn’t buy it. and sometimes the item was never even bought that you thought you couldn’t live without! LOL
    i have two credit cards. and like you i pay the full amount each month.
    they make no interest off me. but you have to have one if you do certain kinds of business… like buying off the internet (i don’t care for paypal for some reason)
    or if you ever need to rent a car.
    the age of instant gratification. you’re so right. they even THINK in shorter spans!
    it’s amazing how this technological movement has changed such basic approaches to life. especially relationships!
    loved this post.
    i just spent a couple of hours on your last one. watched the NDT video you posted and then went on to watch others of his. thanks!
    tammy j recently posted..moving on old bean

  3. Impatience? It’s something I associate with the male of the two genders. Though, maybe and more accurately, should be translated into “irritability”. It is the one trait in others that has definite potential to set me on edge. Rephrase that: DOES set me on edge. The one thing that makes me nervous. Best strategy to deal with the impatient and irritable to just back off and let it all blow over.

    I am surprised at your generalization about youngsters and their “need for instant gratification”. I can’t dispute it. However, looking at a specimen close to my heart, namely the Angel, he has his head far more screwed on than his parents’ generation. If he doesn’t have the cash he won’t buy it. Simple. Even when he was little, indeed even a teenager, when I bought him stuff like, say, clothes he used to stop me in my tracks: “Mama, I don’t need three of …. One will do”. Which reminds me he also eschewed designer clothes with their logo visibly on it. “I am not a WALKING advertisement”, he’d say. “and pay for it on top of it”. Mothers of his friends were incredulous: “How do you do it?”, they’d ask me. I don’t know. I didn’t do anything. Sometimes people just are who they are.

    Greetings from the one person I know who will happily and PATIENTLY sit in a traffic jam – and just think about stuff … you know, just stuff,. a traffic jam being as good as any place,

    Ursula recently posted..The eye of the beholder

    1. I admit that there are exceptional young people who are not driven by the instant gratification syndrome here too but they are a rare species. The aspirational young one here is a product of the reforms that our country undertook in the nineties of the last century. They are different and impatient.

  4. I do my best to avoid waiting in long lines, but Andy and I were very patient about buying things in the past. We only borrowed money once — to buy our first parcel of land. And even then we had a fairly low interest rate and could have saved money by gradually paying off the loan and investing the extra money for a profit. Nope. We don’t like being in debt. It was worth forgoing the profit and being debt-free.
    Cheerful Monk recently posted..Civil Asset Forfeiture

    1. There are no long waiting lines anymore here except when flying out for checking in and security checks. I would rank my having retired as a debt free person as a significant achievement considering the period when I did that.

  5. No time to read the entire post, so I just jumped to the last sentence and things don’t make sense. (Just kidding!) I was in a hurry when I was young and didn’t learn to appreciate patience until later. Or to put it another way, I learned to appreciate others who have much more patience than me, which is most people.
    Looney recently posted..Suspicious Package

  6. I truly believe that we have created this appalling world for the young. One only has to look at student loans and the avariciousness of bankers and rampant consumerism and obselescence. It is complex and terrifying.

    Wisewebwoman recently posted..Tadpole

  7. I think it’s progress that so many things are now readily available and don’t require long waits or repeated applications. Unfortunately as you say the availability often comes with a huge price tag and years of debt – like housing and college tuition. I don’t see anything intrinsically virtuous about delaying pleasure rather than wanting it right now. But I’m concerned when that demand for pleasure is at the expense of other people – like men making sexual demands on women.
    nick recently posted..The final straw

  8. I remember back in the 50/60s when my parents wanted a new car, they basically had to be in a “lottery” and really had no choice which car they would get. I remember how they were the talk of our small country town when they one of maybe 10 Worsleys imported into NZ from possibly UK!

    Then suddenly there were importers who bought in cars from Asia – still with certification in Asian language, radios that didn’t work well, other things that were back2front…

    now it’s real easy to get an car, imported and re-jigged for our roads – but also very easy to get “finance” for them as well. (I don’t have a car)

    I do have one significant debt and at the moment it’s mindlessly repaid out of my super funds so that I don’t even see it go from one gov’t dept to another until I see my quarterly invoice…So I don’t know where I’m at with it.

    I’m one of those people that my credit card people don’t like either…I have A/P weekly going into it because a couple of my regular household bills come out of it…I occasionally top it up to get a mini credit 🙂

    and yes I remember queues especially before you went to grocery store and there was not 10 + checkout operators!

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