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Memories of the 28th Century

Time Is Money

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Origins of the adage "time is money":
"The first cite is a version from Classical Greece "the most costly outlay is
time" attributed to Antiphon. The second cite is from 1572 Discourse
upon Usury, "They saye tyme is precious.""

I had an appointment this morning at Baystate Franklin, but when I got there I was informed that the appointment had been cancelled. That isnít just rude; it resulted in me losing several hours that I could have used productively. The adage "Time is Money" isnít just an old saying. Time really is money. As one example, most people who are employed are paid on the basis of the time they put in.

I wrote the original of this while sitting in the waiting area of the bus station in Greenfield, Massachusetts, because Baystate Medical Franklin didn't bother informing me that had cancelled my appointment until I got there. I was in the bus station not because I enjoy sitting in such places, but because I was trying to get home after the appointment that was cancelled. The clerical staff was so wonderful that I also learned of another appointment that Baystate had made for me, even though I didn't learn about it until this morning. This is the first time this has been done to me by Baystate Medical, but it isn't the first time when the clerical staff of a medical operation has done this to me. There was one practice that messed up appointments so many times that I dropped them and decided never to put up with such incompetence again. By coincidence that medical practice is just down the road from Baystate Franklin.

If an organization is so filled with incompetence that it can't handle something as simple as appointments, then how would one expect them to be at doing complicated things, such as medical procedures? It seems quite clear that those clerical personnel do not understand that time is money, and that means the customers' time. The clerical staff is paid an hourly rate, so they should understand that time is money, but that doesnít seem to have sunk in. I wonder how the clerical staff would react if the payroll department treated them the way that they treat customers' appointments.

I have already made up the bill for my time, and I expect prompt payment.

Writing about this reminded me of one time when someone was trying to recruit me for a commission only position. I mentioned that my time had value, and the recruiter replied that he was commission only.
I asked, "Do you mean that your time is worthless?"
To which he replied. "It only worth something to the employer if I make money for him."
"Well, your time may be worthless, but mine isn't," I replied. Obviously the conversation was at an end.

I think that people who do not value time, both their own and the time of others, are making a powerful statement bout themselves: They consider themselves and others to be of no value. They may be right about themselves, but I and my time are of great value, and I know a lot of people who are of value, and whose time is of value.

Then there are the people who think that only their time is of value. Donald Trump is one example, but most narcissists are of that type. Everyone favors himself or herself over all others, but normal people realize that others must be considered, and their time is of value.


  1. kiz_paws's Avatar
    Well said.
  2. PeterL's Avatar
    Thank you. I am glad that someone agrees. Now I just hope that they will pay my bill.