One of the most noticeable things about our always-on, get-everything-now modern society is an increased lack of patience.

You click a link on a website, and if the new one doesn’t load in one second, you can’t believe how technology has failed you again. You step into the convenience store to get a bottle of water while your gas tank is filling, and you’re annoyed that there are two people ahead of you at the register. You get into an elevator and start fuming that it’s going to stop at someone else’s floor before yours. What the hell?

Recently, I was in a poker hand where I had ace-seven against a guy with ace-queen. The flop came ace-nine-seven, so he had a pair with a big kicker, but I had two pair. He bet, I raised, and he moved all-in with the rest of his rather short stack. Of course, I called and, thinking there was only one possible hand that could beat him, he immediately asked, “Do you have ace-king?” I replied, “If you’ll just wait a few seconds, you’ll find out.” But he had to know before the remaining cards were dealt, and insisted I tell him what I had. From his question, I knew he must have ace-queen, but I never reveal my card until the hand is over. I motioned to the dealer, who turned up the next two cards, which were both blanks that didn’t improve my opponent’s hand. That’s when I exposed mine and won the pot.

Naturally, he wasn’t happy (as I wouldn’t have been if a queen had come out), but his impatience didn’t make matters any better. In his mind, there was information available that he wasn’t instantly privy to, and that put him on edge.

It reminded me of whenever a public figure is going to give a speech and releases its text to the media beforehand. The anchors and reporters who have that information can’t bear the thought of letting you wait a few minutes to hear what it contains. They not only have to tell you what they’ve read, but also prepare onscreen graphics giving away what they consider the most important points. They even have their commentators analyze the speech — which hasn’t been given yet! If they’d just keep quiet, we could hear it ourselves from the horse’s mouth. But those outlets are never satisfied with merely¬†recapping, they must always preview. I can’t imagine how many surprise birthday parties they’ve ruined.

This is not to say that I don’t get a little anxious about what comes next on occasion. For example, we’ve started watching the new season of “Better Call Saul,” and the show is so good that it’s hard being forced to wait an entire week before the next chapter airs. The problem is that we’ve binge-watched so many great shows in multi-episode spurts, one right after another, that going back to the old way of ingesting them singularly seems archaic.

But waiting a week is different than waiting a few seconds. If you can’t do the latter, regardless of whether you’re winning or losing, you may want to go lie down somewhere. For an hour or two.