By Mona Sharif
How to fight zenosyne
I swear I’m not speaking French again or trying to invent words…
John Koenig is a graphic designer and filmmaker who spent the last seven years writing The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows, a dictionary of made-up words. Each original definition aims to fill a hole in the language—to give a name to emotions we all might experience but don’t yet have a word for. Each entry is a collage of word roots borrowed from languages all around the world.
I find his work amazing and as I was writing this SCAB that wasn’t supposed to mention John’s project, I realized one of his words was exactly what I was trying to explain here.
Zenosyne: the sense that time keeps going faster.
The passage of time and how time seems to fly by as we age seems unreal.
The word ‘zenosyne’ might not be real, but the feeling is. You know it: Every year feels a little bit shorter than the one before, and time seems to speed up the older you get. And I can already say that this year at SCA is probably gonna feel like the shortest year ever.
Time is probably one of the things that frightens me the most, maybe because I have a very bad track/sense of time or because I get very nostalgic about memories. However, my first day at SCA feels just like yesterday. But it’s not. We’re exactly 2 months and 30 days before Portfolio day. Not even 3 months. Only 13 weeks. Or 91 days. How scary is that? (VERY VERY TERRIFYING!!!)
I’m eating a raspberry sorbet under Lyon’s warm sun while writing. The phrase ‘the calm before the storm’ never made so much sense to me. I’m fully enjoying this few days of recovery surrounded by friends and family. I feel like I’m in Zelda, trying to recharge my health bar and get back all the little hearts in my life bar that I lost during D&AD. As I’m getting ready for Term 3, here’s what –according to me– could avoid to feel too much zenosyne until Portfolio Day:
● Plan my days (to-do lists are nice friends)
● Work smarter. Accept that staying in the studio for too long isn’t gonna help your creativity: go for walks in Brixton, take breaks, then go back to work
● Have more and more short time goals to have more control
● Science offers a theory about time that says time is gauged by memorable events like firsts, and the less of these we have, coupled with the more repetitive every day things, the shorter time begins to seem. Solution: Let’s make Term 3 the term of firsts.