There are very few subjects which I am an expert at. Grammar, I don’t have a doctorate in. Math? I think if the end of the world were imminent and all I had to do was solve the equation for X to save the world, get ready for the apocalypse and the four horseman to start heading our way. Building or repairing something? If you ask me to fix your washer, just don’t be surprised when your favorite white shirt is all of a sudden your favorite black shirt. I am an expert in a few things though. Eating pizza. You can expect that every slice will be finished and much sooner than you ever thought possible. And you have probably read ad museum about my abilities in the nap arena. I’m not gonna say that I have a PHd in Nappery in college, but I might be the closest one to have ever achieved the highest honor in the Napping Arts, but I slept through the final. I have however, obtained many years of nap research, which I am now willing to share with you, only because I’m bitter that I not sleeping right now.
There are many aspects of napping that the novice napper just doesn’t think about.
Let’s just assume you stayed up all night playing video games and you have to get to work by six. Clearly you didn’t get enough sleep and are going to need a nap sometime today. But when do I have time to nap? All the time. Do you need a short nap? Pull up the boring spreadsheet that your boss has assigned you that he doesn’t want to do, and get a little shut eye with that thing dominating your computer screen. Have a pre-rendered spreadsheet that is so small and full of numbers, that it will be like co-worker repellent. Everyone will turn around the minute they see that boring work that you are using as your cover. Take a good solid 5 minute snoozer or carve out 15 in-and-out-of-consciousness, head bobbing minutes.
How about when you have had a long day at work and you are driving home? You know your route forwards and backwards. You know the long lights, the backed up exits, the left hand turns that will take you 15 minutes to get through. Put on those sunglasses and stare straight ahead. Let’s those eyes fall back into your head and get ready for some amazing micro dreams that will inspire your next novel and your near future narrow misses.
Board meeting with the board? More like bored meeting with the bored! No need to be productive in those! It only takes a few things to be able to snooze your way through those things. A pressing question your boss needs to answer that has been bothering your department and a distraction. Some like to have a note pad and pen, others are able to use a phone or laptop. As long as there is something that you can look down at, there is a distraction for your nappy time. When you are napping make sure your head is tilted down towards the paper or phone or laptop and have your question memorized, so that when you are being called out, you can be looking thoughtfully at your paper (waking up slowly) and fling that question to the middle of the table and let the hyenias pounce on that steak of a question that they have been craving, then commence sleeping the rest of the meeting.
How about at home? Just got home, kids are waiting behind the door to ready to pounce and need to tell you about the fight they got in with each other, but your eyes didn’t quite get the brain scenery they were looking for at work or on the ride home? Look them straight in the eye and tell them they are important. Let them know you can’t wait until you can hear that story. Tell them in an hour, when I’m done with “getting changed” I will be right out. Go into your room, take off your…zzzzzzz and appear fresh and ready to go when they have forgotten all about what they were going to tell you.
How about that Saturday when you stayed up too late again? Wake up early just like the rest of the family, have breakfast, lay on the couch and watch some cartoons with the kids and zzzz, work a little around the house, volunteering to clean the bedroom and zzzzz, then go outside to do some yardwork behind the shed and zzzzz, offer to mow the lawn with the riding lawn mower and zzzz. Then after all the work, while the rest say they need to go grocery shopping, offer to do a few more chores and home and zzzzzz, making sure that you have the duster in your hand as your arm extends above your head, so when that door opens you look exhaustedly like you need a nap after all that hard work.
Timing, positioning, cover, placement, and pre-gaming are all aspects of a good napper. But the most important of all is the desire. Do you really want to nap, or are you just half-hearted napper? If you really want to nap more than anything else in the world, you will find the time. But napping isn’t for everyone. Some people like to get their 8 hours the easy way. At night in their beds. And they might live comfortable lives, but they will never know the excitement and thrill of napping on your terms. When you want to and not when society tells you to.
Gotta go, planning my next 15 minute vacation.
Bitter Napper Ben