What can you do with five minutes?

What can you do with five minutes?

There is a vintage Frank Sinatra song called “Five Minutes More.” Written by Jule Styne with lyrics by Sammy Cahn, it’s a romantic tune that has Old Blue Eyes pleading with his date to give him more time before he must leave.

It gets you to wondering what one can do in five minutes besides the amorous activities that the song implies.

So, here are some thoughts about what might be accomplished if five minutes is all that you have to work with.

• You might cook a three minute egg and eat it, providing that you can tolerate the hot yolk. (Nyuk nyuk, the yolks on you if you’re overly sensitive to hot food).

• If eggs aren’t your thing, you could try to eat 80 chicken nuggets. The internet reports that someone named Sonya Thomas pulled off that feat in five minutes in an eating contest on July 8, 2004. Don’t try to supersize that order, though.

• Getting away from food, how about this – you could read a poem. It cannot be of epic length, however. So cross Homer’s “Odyssey” off the list. On the other hand, Robert Frost’s “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” would be fine.

• But if you are considering writing a poem in five minutes, the challenge is much greater. Nevertheless, assuming you are creative and a quick study, you might be able to give a decent account of yourself by trying something on the order of William Carlos Williams’ “The Red Wheelbarrow,” which is eight lines long and contains a mere 16 words.

• It should take considerably less than five minutes to pay a bill online, unless, of course, your Wi-Fi slows down to a crawl.

• If there’s an open pump and you’re not driving a trailer truck, filling your gas tank can be accomplished in five minutes.

• Shaving and finishing your coffee can be done with a minute to spare, depending, of course, on how long your beard is and how much java remains in your cup.

• How about saying some prayers? Adjust the length to no more than 300 seconds.

• Anyone who is practiced in home KP can unload the dishwasher or vacuum the living room rug in five minutes. On energy drinks you may complete both tasks in the allotted time, but it might be necessary to clean up broken glass.

• You can take several selfies and share them on social media.

• Veterans of the submarine service can take a shower and be dressed.

• You can memorize a fraction of your passwords.

• Walk the dog ... as long as the dog cooperates.

• Call a friend or relative and wish them a good day or tell them you love them.

• Ironing a shirt would be possible, but so would putting on the one you wore yesterday, and then you’d have time to play four one-minute waltzes on the piano.

• Do some push-ups.

• Fight a fast Twitter battle with someone.

• Kiss the person in your life (now we’re back to Sinatra and that song).

• Unless you’re a candidate for the Olympics you can try to run a mile, but likely won’t succeed.

• However, you can read this column and still have time to shake your fist in the air and utter an oath or two.

(Contact me at smithpublarry@gmail.com)

Bottom Lines

Clarification: In regard to my last column about Greenville Public Library Children’s Librarian Barbara “Babs” Wells – The multi-library sensory story time support group has two co-founders, Barbara Wells and Maria Cotto, bilingual children’s librarian of the Pawtucket Public Library.

Mini Theater Review: On stage through March 1 at Trinity Repertory Theater Company in Providence, “Radio Golf” by August Wilson lays bare some complicated and painful realities. A soulful production about some soulless behavior, it exposes the falling out between two friends and one of them and his spouse. The breaks result when the prejudicial prosperity of the white financial establishment is dangled before two African American businessmen.

Corporate moguls want to use the men to help secure government grants intended for minorities, but the strings attached to the huge allotments get inextricably tangled with the heart strings of one conscience-stricken black developer. He can no longer play the game that would destroy a house and the heritage of an aged man whose neighborhood is suffering from urban blight. The outcome is bittersweet and extraordinarily poignant. The performances by actors Joe Wilson and Ricardo Pitts-Wiley alone justify the price of a ticket. Pitts-Wiley is especially impressive as the old man.