View Mobile Site

Text Size: Smaller Larger Normal

To sleep, perchance to scream

POSTED July 24, 2009 10:33 p.m.
Late the other night I was sitting in my room, minding my own business and absentmindedly watching a little television while scribbling some notes, when much to my surprise sunlight started shining through my window.
I took this as my sign to go to sleep. And also to get a larger, harder to ignore clock so the sun wouldn’t interrupt my private time again.
Sadly, Mr. Sun and I haven’t exactly been on speaking terms since that incident. We’ve had a bit of a rough relationship for a while now, to be honest.
I’d say we’re avoiding each other, but that seems too cruel.
It’s not that I don’t like Mr. Sun. He’s bright and sparkly and warm and… well. It’s really not about him, when it all comes down to it.
It’s just that he’s no moon, that subtle source of light that leads some to sleep and others to romantic thoughts, insanity, or even were-form.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m no insomniac. Or werewolf, for that matter.
I love sleeping. I sleep a lot, far more than the average person. Heck, I make a hibernating grizzly bear look hyperactive by comparison.
I just don’t like sleeping when everyone else is sleeping.
The world is a busy place. Humanity is accepting — even adoring — of people who get up early to collect garbage, deliver papers, and get a head start on work before the rest of the office shows up.
But what about those night owls amongst us? We’re the redheaded stepchildren of the socially acceptable world.
I was sitting with a few friends at a late night donut shop in Modesto earlier this week, the clock nearing 10:30 p.m., and all four of us were wide-awake. Our days were, really, just getting started. And so we wanted to go out, to take advantage of our evening energy and do something celebratory.
I know, even to think of something more celebratory than eating donuts may seem like heresy, but we wanted to put our vigor to greater use than chewing.
We started to run down our options in our bustling metropolis of Modesto.
“We could see a movie!” one friend said.
“No dice,” said another. “The last flick started at 10:15.”
“We could… uh… go bowling!”
“League night. There’ll be no lanes.”
“We could play pool…”
“Last time we played pool you almost got stabbed with a cue stick.”
And, with that, our entertainment options were quickly exhausted. Unlike the morning crowd, those lucky ones who have crowded, trendy, early evening entertainment alternatives to hop between, we were quickly discussing the merits of cow tipping as an acceptable recreational activity.
So we just ended up sitting by ourselves at the deserted donut shop, talking and laughing and eating our bodyweight in lard-filled treats until two in the morning.
It was, in a word, magical. It reminded me why I avoid those crowded, trendy, early evening entertainment alternatives in the first place.
I’m going to be honest here. I love other people. I’m human; I’m a social animal. But, more than being with other people, I love being away from other people.
This, like most things in my life, can probably be traced somehow to the fact that I’m an only child.
My late night schedule lets me have my “me time,” much more private time than the early risers get. While they get, at most, an hour or two before the “regular folk” get up and at it, I get at least four uninterrupted hours a night just to do things I want to do.
I can write, I can read, I can become the No. 6 player in the world at a video game. It’s all up to me.
I get why some people choose to get up early. For a well-adjusted individual, it offers a great chance to enjoy oneself in the morning and hang out with the mass of humanity in the evening.
But who am I trying to kid; I’m a journalist. There’s no way you could describe me as well-adjusted.
So, while those early risers are out socializing in crowded coffee shops, I’ll be socializing with my pillow.
And, when I do go out with my friends, I’ll enjoy the fact that the world is a bit more dimly lit, a bit more mysterious in moonlight and rife with opportunities we can create for ourselves. I’ll enjoy exploring the world — feeling like it’s exploring, not just navigating the predefined paths.
I’ll enjoy being me.
To contact Alex Cantatore, e-mail acantatore@turlockjournal.com or call 634-9141 ext. 2005. But, please, don’t call before noon.

Commenting is not available.

Share on Facebook Bookmark and Share
Commenting not available.

Please wait ...