Tag Archives: five-second

The five-second rule society

Source: Wikipedia

What would you spare for a stranger in the name of common decency? Polite consideration? Manners? Good form? Fuck, would you even do some small tidbit of niceness for someone you don’t know in the name boredom or trying something new?

Would you even bother to spare a mere five seconds of your time on this planet even if it didn’t line your pockets with gold?

Would you bother to move a finger a couple of inches for another human being? No, I’m not talking about The Finger! I’m talking about the supreme effort required to do something as simple as using your turn signal.

These questions occurred to me this evening as I drove down the street. I was even minding my own business and hadn’t done anything overtly¬†provocative. ūüôā

When the chips were down, I have no doubt that some people on the Titanic were selfish assholes. You know, the “every man for himself” type of thing. On the other hand, I’m sure some stepped up. You know, giving up their seats for women and children in exchange for certain death. That’s a fairly bold move. You might even call it an “ah ha moment.” I’ll be honest. I’m not so sure that just because someone is a “woman” or a “child” they automatically deserve a shot at life and I don’t. So I’m not exactly sure what I’d do in the same situation. (However, peeing myself is a given.) But I can certainly acknowledge the awesome level of sacrifice that some voluntarily made to make such a decision.

So I guess the real question I’m struggling with is, as a society, how much do we really give a shit about each other?

  • I was driving down the road. I was the only car as far as the eye could see. At a cross street a car had just arrived and was about to cross. Based on my rate of travel and distance, there clearly wasn’t enough time for the driver to go. So naturally they went anyway. I had to hit the brakes to avoid plowing in to them as they deserved. (Trust me, it would have been my pleasure.)¬†It would have taken an additional five seconds or so for me to clear the intersection. Moral of this story? “I can’t spare a mere five seconds for you in order to proceed safely and courteously and have the whole street to themselves.
  • I was driving down the road. Suddenly the car in front of me slams on the brakes. There is no turn signal. They slow to almost a complete stop and then turn right. Moral of the story? “I can’t be bothered to play ahead and/or use my turn signal even failure to do so might kill us both.” Again, turning on their blinker about five seconds earlier might have helped.

Finally it dawned on me. This five-second thing is a trend. It must be significant. A hypothesis was slowly beginning to germinate in my mind:

When a society reaches the point that members can’t be bothered to spare five-seconds for each other then that society has reached “critical mass” and must leave the planet immediately.

We are the five-second society. The five-second rule is now in play.