Call NASA. Better yet, call the United Federation of Planets. After years and years of watching old Star Trek episodes, I have finally stumbled across a real life rift in the space-time continuum!

It’s in my shower.

There’s no other explanation for the odd way in which time folds and stretches when I vanish behind that plastic curtain.

For example, this morning I turned on the hot water, stepped into the shower, and didn’t have another conscious thought until maybe a half hour later, when I came to my senses to find myself up to my wrists in conditioner, generously running it through my hair. What was I doing all that time? What was I thinking? Where did I go? I have no idea. Did I even shampoo first?

It threw me off so badly, I had to go back and start my whole showering ritual again from the beginning. Wet hair, shampoo (lather, rinse, no repeat), apply conditioner, use body wash on all my other bits and pieces, shave, rinse out conditioner, done. Every single day, exactly the same. It takes ten to fifteen minutes.

So why do I sometimes emerge from the shower to find, inexplicably, that forty-five minutes have passed, leaving me standing in a towel in the hallway with my wet hair dripping on the rug when I should already be completely ready and running out the door?

I’m telling you, it’s a rift in the space-time continuum.

I can see that you’re skeptical, and I don’t blame you. Surely, you’re saying to yourself, there is a more rational explanation for the phenomena I’ve described. And I can see your point. I do admit to having a lot of inspired ideas in the shower. And sometimes, when I’ve been wrestling with the same problem for a while, the answer will just come to me from under a head full of shampoo suds. I’ve even been known to write whole blog posts in my head while I stare at a crack between the tiles and the hot water beats ceaselessly down on my shoulders (of course, remembering what I wrote when I actually sit down at my computer hours later is a different matter altogether.) So I suppose an argument could be made that the mystifying time suckage is of my own invention.

Still, it’s eerie. Sort of like the nine minutes that mysteriously disappear every morning after Paul hits the snooze button on the alarm clock. It seems that we barely have time to blink before the alarm goes off again. What happens to those nine minutes?

I’m thinking alien abduction.


16 responses »

  1. I’ve had the same thing happen on those rare occasions when I’m alone on the 25 minute drive to or from town. I remember the grocery store and turning into the driveway, but I’m not sure what happened in between. Maybe someday we’ll end up on the same space ship! 🙂

  2. I had that EXACT thing happen this morning! I thought I had plenty of time, I hop out, look at the clock and think: where the h@ll did half an hour go?! And yes, I was late too. So glad I’m not alone.

  3. the shower is the best epiphiny generator ever!
    i used to wonder whether there were times when God would get bored of our boring ol’ human lives and mess with time just to make things interesting. I can just see him up there with a little “time knob” that he can turn to fast forward or rewind time…

  4. I used to be strictly a bathtub girl till I had to take showers after delivering Ava. Now a scorching hot shower is my Calgon. All noises are drowned out other than the thoughts in my head which for a brief moment get to be about something other than being a mom/wife.

    That is till a tiny person with curly hair yanks back the curtain to ask me to wipe her poopoo hiney.

  5. I just realized you added my link, thank you so much, because I so enjoy your posts and am so glad to have come across your blog 🙂

  6. That is the funniest thing. I’m am so glad I moved into a nicer house where I can have looooooooonnnnngggg showers again. (I was living in a house with a 10 minute max hot water supply) Aren’t they wonderful?

  7. I too find myself following the same showering ritual (almost) daily, and alas the time does just mysteriously disappear. I figured that only happened to me – should have guessed that the same thing would happen to you too! My showers typically happen at night when all people under 4 feet tall in are bed, but every now & then I have to slip one in while kids are watching cartoons or movies. It is only during THOSE times that I am able to keep my senses about me and can quickly enter & depart the shower in record time 🙂 I should probably thank Ian for that – as we all know, when he’s left alone for more than 1 minute, there’s no telling what I might emerge from my bathroom to find… 🙂

  8. Katrina, you were in “Flow”.
    Flow is the mental state of operation in which the person is fully immersed in what he or she is doing, characterized by a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and success in the process of the activity. Proposed by psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, the concept has been widely referenced across a variety of fields.

    Check out more on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flow_(psychology)

    My husband studied this theory many moons ago, and I have always been facinated by the concept of getting “lost” when we are doing something we enjoy, and that it is a good thing.

  9. We have a similar phenomena, but only in LM’s shower, not in mine. I don’t understand what could possibly take an eleven year old 25 minutes to shower (and do NOT answer that with the notions I do not yet want to hear). He never seems to have any idea he’s been in there so long, and has no explanation when he steps out. Maybe if the aliens could at least feed him breakfast while he’s gone we could strike a deal…?

  10. “Flow.” I like that! I suppose, when it happens, that I should just go with it?

    I’d like to experience it more in my writing; can it be consciously cultivated? I think I’ll check out that link–thank you, Silver Valley Girl. 🙂

    I’m glad to know I’m not the only one experiencing time lapses in the shower.

    By the way, Amy–wouldn’t “Alien Breakfast” be a great name for a rock band?

  11. I want to experience this “flow”,”alien abduction” , time thing, but I have one of those showers with a short flow of hot water. Do you think it would work as well with ice cold water? Probably not. 🙂

  12. Sorry, Inland Empire Girl–I’m pretty sure ice cold water would disrupt the heady cosmic forces at work here. Maybe a new water heater is in order. 😀

  13. That happened to me today!!! No, way. I have no idea how it happened but I was late for work. I did not leave my house until I was supposed to be there. Where did the time go??? What was I doing??? I realized that the time loss must’ve happened in the shower. There was no other explanation. Whew! I thought it was weird this morning.

  14. The same thing happens in my shower! It shouldn’t take so long to clean one body, but I swear I’m busy and cleaning, shaving and rinsing the whole time!

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