The Night Owl

Those moments when I tell myself I’m gonna go to bed early so I could get up the next morning early? – yeah I break it 98% the times – waking up the next morning either as high as not feeling the presence of my brain (physically) or as heavy as feeling like a snorlax and the only strength I have is to move one eyelid half open.

I am a fancy-sleeper. By that, I mean taking a bath to lay fresh and clean on the newly-washed bed sheet and downy-smelling cold pillows, playing a relaxing static noise like the sound of the rain (from Youtube), lighting up the candle for the fragrant oil diffuser, dim overnight light, Vicks Vaporub on my forehead and nose, how more relaxed could I get? In fact, I’m so relaxed that I read and read and read and suddenly it’s 2AM! And I’m already greasy and hungry and exhausted and haggard! Dream night ruined.

Whilst I count getting up in the morning as one of life’s hardest tasks, I always end up doing it again the following night, and again. And again and again (repeat ’til fade).

Yes, the early bird gets the worm, but in the classroom context, the early bird gets the broom and the coconut husk (back in the 90s, we wax and scrub our floors). In the office, the early bird gets either the Plaque of Appreciation for the unpaid pre-official-working-hours duty or the First Procrastination of the Day Award.

But. . .I have always been a night owl, and the late bird who gets the salary-deduction worm. I usually suffer from 11AM to 3PM like a living zombie with a 2-ton ax cracking open my skull. These are the times when the heaviest things in the universe are not the super-dense blackholes but my eyelids! My eyeballs fall and roll on the table and my boss whacks my forehead, then I wake up realizing I slammed my head onto the monitor. Then I sleep again and start to fall on my side. Realizing I’m falling, I suddenly spring back vertical and oscillates like a dancing bamboo culm or that nodding dog you see on the dashboard.

Anyway, I want to share the ways to fight the evil forces of dreamland during office hours to minimize the futility of these ramblings of mine:

1. Talk a lot. Not as effective as a minty fresh flavored toothpaste, but a lot better than an open-rectum heinous breath. It also wakes the person next to you, annoyingly or not.

2. Play. Dribble a baseball or balance a rotating pen or whatever it is that works. Playing while working helps keep stress level low to keep efficiency high. Playing excessively keeps stress level low and keeps your boss’ eyes on you. Playing all day keeps stress level low and you get to keep a termination memo with you.

3. Laugh. Read humor blogs. Whatever makes your jaw lock. You also get instant 6-packs for free. And evil sinful gases.

4. Stand up every 30 minutes. This is necessary for good health. Weekend sports does not offset the effects of sitting whole day for 5 days, studies show.

5. Take a short walk. Go to the ground floor and back. Use the stairs. But only for 2 to 4 flights, not the whole stretch up to the 15th floor if you want to reach your office before 5 o’clock.

6. Go to the toilet and face the mirror. Two things will happen: (1) You’ll wake in awe of how awesome you are, or (2) you’ll wake in shock of how awful you look. Either way, welcome back to your consciousness!

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