Wasting Time Shortens Potential

Main piece:

Wasting time shortens potential.


Background information (Why does the informant know or like this piece? Where or who did they learn it from? What does it mean to them?):

It was like a motivational thing that my dad would tell me a lot. Not just school, but in sports too. In sports it was huge for me. I learned it from my dad, from a very young age. I would say like six or seven. He would say it to me after hockey games. It was the idea that practice is allocated time and it doesn’t go to waste. It’s a motivational, positive thing. Learn from your mistakes and don’t waste your time feeling sad about it. It’s a very future oriented saying. It’s about moving on, really.


Context (When or where would this be performed? Under what circumstance?):

Mostly after major events, like milestones. Also sometimes little events, every hockey event or every track meet. It’s mostly a negative thing. It’s said during negative time for positive reinforcement. Positive connotation used in a negative context. I still hear it to this day. Six years old to nineteen. My dad will say it over the phone. And again, it’s not just academic. Sometimes it’ll relate to relationships, like girls, or activities.


Personal Analysis:

This piece is rather interesting, because it is a positive statement used in negative situations. It took a relatively long time for me to actually understand what the informant meant when he explained the implications. In reality, I’m not quite sure if he could have explained it to me in a way that I would have completely understood, but maybe that’s one of the intricacies of folklore. I understand this piece in a way that may be different that the informant simply because I am not of his culture.