Punctuality is the Virtue of the Bored


Writer Evelyn Waugh is said to have said, “Punctuality is the virtue of the bored.” I chuckled when I read that in a BBC article about the punctuality of the Swiss. Many of my ancestors were Swiss. When I visited the farm in the Jura mountains where one of my great-great-grandfathers once lived, I couldn’t fathom why he decided to leave. The area was a paradise of forests and green pastures. It turns out that he left because a tavern opened a mile or so away from his farm and he did not want his children to grow up so close to drinking and dancing. I don’t think his decision to move all the way to rural Ohio was the best choice, but who am I to judge. His action didn’t work as there is beer in my fridge and wine on my shelves.

The need to be punctual fails me when I’m at my desk in the garden. I’m never bored, so maybe I’ll never be good at being punctual.


The dogs are never bored either. They always find something meaningful to do, like trying to rip the weaving off a lawn chair. I give them the benefit of the doubt that they are just wanting to take it apart to see how it is made. Dogs are curious that way, you know.


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