Friday, February 17th, 2012

Writing Prompt – Patience

Stop SignI was running a few minutes late to work this morning.

This is a problem, because running even a few moments late can mean being a half-hour to forty minutes late overall.

Case in point:

First I had to wait through the traffic jam at the stop sign.

Yeah, I know that sounds funny. But, because I was late, I had to wait for three cars to go through the stop sign at the intersection onto a larger road. (Normally, I arrive alone, see no cross traffic, and pull out immediately.)

Three of us were waiting for cross traffic to pass. So that made me a few moments later.

Then I got behind the pokey driver (+ a few moments) and because we were pokey, the school bus pulled out in front of us (+ a few more minutes) and then we got stopped by the train (+ a lot more moments while we waited for I-stopped-counting-at-57-cars to go by.)

When I finally got to the highway, traffic was nearly bumper to bumper, and I lost my early morning commute advantage.

::: sigh :::

The inclination is to get in the hammer lane and speed along with all the other crazies so that I can make up some time. But I exercise patience, because as the billboard says, it’s better to arrive 6 minutes late, than six feet under.

(Although in my case, it’s about 35 minutes late. That’s still better than six feet under.)

Here’s Your Prompt:

  • Write a story, essay or scene where a character’s patience led him into trouble. For instance, due to patience, someone lost a career opportunity; or, someone watched a loved one die while they patiently waited for a quack doctor to affect some kind of cure.
  • Write a story where not being patient brought on loads of trouble. (This one is almost too easy: impatient driving caused an accident, bailing out too soon meant taking hit in the stockmarket – but holding on a day could have meant making zillions, jumping to conclusions loses you the love of your life, etc.)
  • How about a play on words? Use patience, patients or pay / shuns in a poem or essay.
  • If you journal, write about a time you had to convince someone else to be patient…and you were wrong. What happened?
  • And some obligatory quotes to stir the juices:
    • Patience is the best remedy for every trouble. ~ Plautus
    • Patience is a remedy for every sorrow. ~ Publius Syrus
    • Patience, and shuffle the cards. ~ from Don Quixote, by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
    • Patience is a necessary ingredient of genius. ~ Benjamin, Earl of Beaconsfield Disraeli
    • Endurance is the crowning quality, And patience all the passion of great hearts. ~ James Russell Lowell

Stop sign photo from