December 09, 2007

The dark side

When I was off in the mountains with my Wild Women friends this fall and decided to take a nap, I grabbed a sleeping bag, went out onto the deck, curled up above the waves that were slapping against the shore, and fell right to sleep. My friend kept telling me that they envied my ability to fall asleep any place, any time. Some of them have insomnia, and they kept telling me that sleeping easily is a gift.

Several of my kids have inherited this gift. But there is a dark side to the gift. We who fall asleep easily are all terrible to wake up. Boy in Black, in particularly, has always been dreadful in the morning. When he was in kindergarten, I would carry him downstairs and get him completely dressed for school, and he would not wake up. Now that he's over six feet tall, I can no longer carry him around in the morning, so I have to content myself with kicking him and yelling at him.

Of course, because he's an adult now, Boy in Black sets his own alarm. That means that every morning, now that's he home from college, I get to hear his cell phone going off over and over and over again. Sometimes it's this obnoxious tune that comes from a Laurel and Hardy clip; sometimes it's his own deep voice saying, "Boy in Black! Wake the fuck up!"

The other day, I asked, "How does your roommate stand it?" His room at college is a split double, which means that he and his roommate are only separated by a partial wall.

Boy in Black told me that last week when he had a lot of work to do, he decided to take a nap at 11 pm. He set his alarm for midnight, with the idea that he would get up and do some work then. He stretched out on his bed, with even his shoes on and the light on, and his cell phone in his hand.

When he woke up, it was 8 am. His alarm had been going off every five minutes for eight hours.

"Yeah, the alarm must have gone off 96 times," he said, grinning.

I figure his roommate is either another sound sleeper, or an extremely tolerant person.

Morning has broken

Boy in Black, asleep on the couch, in the full sun, oblivious to the houseful of people who are talking, eating, and playing music around him.

23 comments:

liz said...

His roommate will eventually write something rude on BiB's face with a Sharpie.

Anonymous said...

... Or you could just decorate him for the holidays ...

jo(e) said...

(laughing)

Don't you all start encouraging a sharpie war! Because I'm a sound sleeper -- and the teenagers stay up way later than me.

You know I'd be on the losing end of that battle ....

Overeducated Twit said...

As someone who sets her alarm for two and three times and then hits snooze multiple times...

I have nothing objective or constructive to say. I do envy the ability to sleep anywhere, though. I find it hard to fall asleep, but once I'm out, I'm out pretty solidly.

bridgett said...

My future husband had such a roommate. His roommate's inability to wake up OR turn off his alarm speeded our cohabitation considerably.

KathyR said...

I am envious. I can barely manage to stay asleep in my own bed.

And I agree that a little tinsel would definitely be a lovely addition to BiB's ensemble.

Lorianne said...

As an undergrad, I lived in a triple, and the three of us all had different schedules. I very quickly learned how to sleep through my roommates' alarms while hearing my own. I guess it's like a mom hearing the sound of her own baby crying while sleeping through other sounds.

Learning to sleep through roommates' alarms came in handy when I moved to an apartment next to a train track. After ONE NIGHT of waking up to the sound of the 4 am train, I learned to ignore that, too.

Young people are very adaptive. :-)

Tall Girl said...

I can't imagine sleeping like that. I feel like a different species! Anything wakes me up! Though years of wearing earplugs to cope with snoring partner helps slightly...

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Hey BB is not wearing black--I'm not sure I ever saw him not in black--course, I haven't seen him for a while.

WOW! I'm glad he lived through having his cell phone go off 96 times--was his roommate home? Yikes!

jo(e) said...

Well, his shirt and bandana are black. The pants are dark grey, although they look lighter here because he's in the direct sunlight.

Yep, his roommate was there on the night his alarm went off 96 times. But it doesn't seem like it bothered him ....

kathy a. said...

he is so cute! but my guess is that the roommate is plotting revenge.

the roommate definitely needs some marbles. toss a few in bed with the person who needs to wake up, and voila! it works particularly well if the marbles are properly chilled beforehand.

ymp said...

I know I regularly plot my brothers' violent untimely ends when their alarms go off for hours at a time.
And when either of them decides it's nap-time and falls asleep. In under 2 minutes. Randomly.
I, on the other hand, have the 30 minute bedtime ritual that helps me sleep. Most nights.
Love the marbles idea, though

Cathy said...

what are with all of the bandanas?

I hate cell phone alarm clocks. My husband can sleep through those. I cannot.

I can hear an alarm clock go off in another room and wake up - person who it was intended for sleep right through it.

That ain't right is it.

jo(e) said...

Boy in Black always has a couple of bandanas tied to his belt loops. Partly, it's handy to have them if he is going to play Ultimate and needs to tie back his hair. But also he is always wiping his hands on them. He washes his hands before touching his guitar, for instance.

Aliki2006 said...

Lots of things wake me up, too. My dad, however, can sleep anywhere at the drop of a hat, and he was always like this!

Coffee-Drinking Woman said...

I'd second (or third) the sharpie comments, but karma's ab*tch, so I won't.

I once slept through our next door neighbor beating the pulp out of his wife until his daughter hit him over the head with some hard object, and police sirens and scretching car tires coming and going endless times and doors slamming and angry neighbors yelling... It apparently went on for hours. I cannot, however, sleep through the slightest peep out of any of my children.

(the violent neighbor? He went to jail that night. and then moved.)

Boy in Black said...

Thats not true, jo(e). I never wipe my hands on my bandanas. They are to keep my hair out of my eyes when I'm playing ultimate or anything where my hair bounces around and falls in my eyes.

jo(e) said...

Boy in Black: Oh, I must be thinking of your father. He often puts a white cloth in his belt loop and wipes his hands on it when he's cleaning.

Marie said...

Oh my! BiB, in the flesh...er...print! Hi there. Great post, great pic.

julieunplugged said...

My own 20 year old "man-boy" with the long hair has the same ability to sleep anywhere through anything. Love that shot.

I don't, unfortunately.

zartman said...

If BiB was my roommate, he would no longer be able to find his cell phone.

Rev Dr Mom said...

The Kid has the same ability to sleep through alarms. And to answer me like he's awake when he's really still sleeping.

I just hope he doesn't have any early classes when he starts college.

I fall asleep very easily, too, but I am not hard to wake up. Maybe four kids did that to me--but you have four, too!

ccw said...

I would love to be able to sleep like that from time to time.

I love the picture; he looks younger all curled up on the couch.