QUOTE OF THE DAY (OR MORE): "No, no. You don't understand. This is an '89 Calico. I'm pretty sure that exceeds the Kelly Blue Book value. The cat's totaled." --A comedian whose name I forget talking about a vet who presents a $3,000 bill for a 12-year-old cat

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I Don't do Mornings

I have never been, am not, and will never be a morning person. I would love to be a morning person; when I imagine how much I could accomplish by rising earlier in the day, I beam just from the prospect. I could get up before the sun rises, have a peaceful run before the rest of the world is conscious, and then shower, thereby actually spending the bulk of my day clean.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t hate mornings. On the occasions when I’ve had extraordinary self control and actually risen very early to run (or been absolutely forced to do so due to training requirements and schedule restraints), I love it once I’m up and going. The “and going” part can take quite some time, but the faster I get into my running shoes and out the door the faster I wake up whether I like it or not. There’s something magical about being out and about while the rest of humanity (and the animal kingdom) is still sleeping; nothing and no one could possibly have irritated you yet. Of course most of the animal kingdom is already up by, say, 5 am, anyway, notwithstanding my previous sentence; it is awesome to cross paths with a deer or great heron on early morning runs, even though on occasion they’ve scared the heck out of me.

So no, no – it’s not that I don’t like mornings. I just don’t do mornings. I am always craving more sleep when I wake up. I have to be one with my coffee for quite some time before I feel any energy start flowing.

This morning was typical. The husband’s alarm is always first to go off. Preferring to wake to pop songs from the radio at a deafening volume (as he’s also not a morning person), the husband always sets the alarm an hour before he actually wishes to emerge from bed (argh), thus exercising the snooze button repeatedly. This isn’t a problem for him, as he promptly relapses into a deep, comfortable, sleep after each thunderous roar of the current pop song emerging from the alarm clock. I, however, wake from the first blaring song, practically hitting the ceiling from having jumped at the sudden, scary noise; I then lie in fear, half awake, of the next earsplitting, outburst from the alarm clock. It’s even more harrowing when, by chance, the current broadcast emanating from the clock radio is not a song, but rather the morning disc jockeys laughing. (My alarm clock is not much better; before I had laser eye surgery, I bought the clock displaying the most obnoxiously large digital numerals so that I would be able to see it (I still couldn’t see it). It did not occur to me to test what sort of sound would greet me every morning of my life. Alas, to make shameless use of a very bad pun, the sound is, indeed, quite alarming (see my entry describing the Myrtle Beach marathon for more about alarm sounds) ).

Recently, though, God smiled upon me by killing off the radio alarm clock he’s had since college. The husband was quite upset, having grown understandably attached to the clock that had failed to wake him for those undergraduate 8 o’clock classes… “Awww,” I sympathized. “Bummer.”

I promptly went out to get a new one, and Target had ZERO stock of clock radios. These days, it seems, it’s either a basic alarm clock for $9.99 or a “wake to your iPod” alarm clock for $100+. I looked up, said thank you, and toted home a basic alarm clock.

The next day, the husband promptly returned the basic alarm clock and was overjoyed to discover that Target now had clock radios in stock. He brought home his new Sony Dream machine.

I have still done something good, though, because it turns out that the radio reception on the new Dream machine leaves something to be desired, and so the husband has settled for the regular alarm rather than the radio. Folks, run out and buy yourselves a Sony Dream machine, because the sound of the alarm is so beautiful, so subtle, so peaceful. It gently nudges you awake in a soft tone: “hey there, sleepyhead… time to start waking up, you…” rather than: “GET UP, YOU MISERABLE LAZY SLOTH!!! GET UP NOW !!!!”

This morning, then, began with the Dream machine. Once, twice, three times, even more… The husband said: “don’t you think you should get up now?”

“No,” I mumbled.

“Whaddya mean?” he asked, confusedly.

“How is ‘no’ ambiguous?” I questioned.

Hearing the familiar grinding of the coffee machine downstairs, though, at last coerced me out of bed, after which I sleepily pulled on a pair of sweats and a turtleneck and sweatshirt. As I drove home in my socks after having dropped the kids off at school, I once again wished I could be the sort of person who had already risen, run, and showered. It does feel rather sloth-like to be sitting at my desk in my PJs until noon or 1 pm when I go out for my run. Then I had another thought, though: maybe I should just invest in nicer PJs?

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