Wake Up, Subconscious, You’re Stupid
Sometimes I wake up at 3AM and I’m so awake that staying in bed feels like being held underwater. I must escape.
Mindy, the belovèd wife of my youth, says, “Try going back to sleep.”
I say, “YOU try going back to sleep.”
But she’s already asleep.
I occasionally manage to drop off again. Other times, the torture’s too great, and I have a little conversation with myself. It’s my get-up justification checklist:
ME: Brain, you can take this deprivation. You’ve never had even one bite of drugs. Never been a wine-bibber. You’ve never suffered a massive hammer-induced concussion, or headbutted a whaling ship to death like a dick, or been hit by two car bumpers at the same time from opposite directions, the drivers mistaking you for a zit. You’ve never had a baby in the house waking you in the dead of night for decades with its pathological greed. Therefore, as brain mileage goes, you’ve never been more than five miles from home. You, sweet meat of the skull, are a classic 1981, owned by an old agoraphobic actuary, one who only drives to market once a month and maintains you with oatmeal, meditation, and Jillian Michaels’ Yoga Inferno. You can take this hit.
Having given myself permission, I shoot out of bed like a corpse from a starship, rush downstairs in the crazy world’s-end darkness that’s all mine and cannot be taken from me by banks, neighbors, employers, animals, churches, anyone, because they’re all dead asleep, and I immediately eat bowl after bowl of cereal while watching stand-up comedy, spraying milk from my nose into my mouth, a non-disgusting milk cycle that’s good for the environment.