More Time Than Ideas

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Last updated on February 6th, 2024 at 07:45 am

So I did a lot of writing while I was away on vacation. Seriously. A lot. I wrote when travelling, when up at nights in apartments when Sarah wanted to go off to the pool to enjoy the water (and if you don’t know, I loathe water if it’s not a hot shower). This entry, in particular, was one I put together while having a horrible day stuck in Charles de Gaulle airport. I could tell you about it, but other than learning how to be extremely patient, I don’t know if this blog is the place to put it!

But this entry was all about killing time—I know that many readers here don’t often have the opportunity to even have a second to think, but you never know when the moments will come that for choices outside of your control, you’ve wound up with more time than you have ideas. This entry is only the tip of the iceberg in that respect, but I hope that it would give some ideas to think over, and maybe you too can write an entry on it someday!


One would think that after having spent nearly seven consecutive hours in an airport, after waking up pre-dawn to make it in time for a flight that basically never really existed, after paying a cabbie an exorbitant amount of foreign currency to drop you off at the wrong airport terminal due to misinformation—that one would get a lot done. And no doubt—I did get some things done:

  • I got some future entries roughed out on the iPad with a combination of the Pages app and an Apple Wireless Keyboard
  • I did some further study of David Meerman Scott’s The New Rules of Marketing and PR
  • I roughed out some parts of a new beat on the Garageband app

So yes, when you have to kill time, there are ways. But man is it ever tiring. These are the things you simply cannot prepare for in life. Shit will happen. For instance, we just discovered that our planed will be delayed another 3 hours (which will make it a sum total of 11 hours spent in this airport). But they offer free Wi-Fi! A whole 15 minutes of it! Woo hoo! However, back to my point. Because you never know when life will give you extended periods of unsolicited free time, I completely advocate being forearmed with plenty of things to do to make the hours pass as painlessly as possible. Here’s a quick list of the tools and techniques you can use to make this happen:


Seriously — y’all without hobbies, I don’t know how you survive. You get bored more easily because you don’t have a hobby with which you can spend your time improving. People don’t know what fun things they can get you for your birthday since they’re not associating you with anything in particular. No communities of like-minded people to hang with. No websites catered to your preferred pastimes. Seriously. For your own good—GET A HOBBY.


A book in which you can get engrossed can make all the difference — especially if it’s small and lightweight enough to be concealed in a pocket or bag. Whip it out inconspicuously and try to get caught up with some of what the literary world has to offer.


On this trip. I’ve brought with me: my BlackBerry; my iPod Touch; my iPad; and my camera.

Sometimes, you have only so much physical room to work with, so you try to maximize what space you do have. For me, this involves loading my devices with a ridiculous amount of reading material and music, grabbing a fistful of notes and sketches on loose-leaf paper, and trying to make sense of it all on whatever device happens to be in my hands.

When it comes to devices, these situations provide a good opportunity to:

  • learn how to use your device
  • explore the options available to you with your device
  • take care of outstanding items, like writing letters or planning for your retirement… depending on your age…

So these are just a few ideas of what you can do when you have more time than you have ideas to fill it with. I hope that the next time you find yourself in an unsolicited span of free time, that you find something to do that’ll help it pass a lot more quickly!

The second logo for Casey Palmer, Canadian Dad



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