Friday, May 8, 2009

The Mind is a Blank

In college one summer, I had a roommate who was probably the worst morning person in the history of morning people. It wasn't because he was surly or irritable, which would place him in league with millions of other humans. No, his problem was that the daily act of waking was distinctly and thoroughly bewildering. On days when I didn't have to work, sleeping in was futile; he'd hit the snooze button on his alarm anywhere from ten to fifteen times per morning. Every five minutes, I'd hear the loud buzzing, roll over, and watch the slow, agonizing process by which he came to life. The maddening routine lasted at least an hour.

(Hey, you know what sucks? Sharing a bedroom in college.)

With his mouth hanging agape, and his eyes resembling Jack Nicholson's just after he had a lobotomy in "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest," he'd glance around the room in a lethargic swivel. Every element, from myself to the wallpaper to the computer where he spent most of his waking life, deepened the experience of confusion. It was like watching an alien child subjected to a new, overstimulating world. Along with befuddlement, his face contained a faint trace of injury, as though the scathing reality he beheld both offended and aggrieved him. Often, low moans would escape his lips as he fretted over the plight of a new day.

When he finally rose, he'd stand for long periods in one spot, shoulders hunched, mouth still agape, examining the wall. If I happened to say good morning, in the interest of jarring him into action so I could fall back asleep, he'd execute a slow turn, scrunch his eyes in my direction, and pause for ten seconds before a distant recognition prompted him to drawl something like "oh...hey."

For me, a person cursed to wake at the lightest noise, damned to greet every morning with a thousand contradictory, swirling thoughts that urge me to an immediate alertness, it was all very annoying. I had the distinct urge to douse him with a bucket of cold water and scream at him like a drill sergeant. "Get up, maggot!" At the same time, I envied what must have been the very deep, very impenetrable dream world he inhabited.

What is the point of all this? Well, I just had a morning to rival his lazy theatrics. Last night, my team got killed in the championship game of our basketball league, and the fatigue of exercise, the doldrums of defeat, and the soporific effect of three beers laid me out. Morning came way, way too soon. I spent at least fifteen minutes groaning into my pillow. Finally, I staggered out of bed in a slack-jawed imitation of my old roommate, pained and dumbfounded by the need for activity.

And now, it's the only topic I can write about with any reliability. Mustering the energy to talk about the Yankees (they still stink), the NBA playoffs (really awesome), or anything else (mostly shit) is impossible.

That being said, tonight's NBA games should be fantastic. It's one of those Fridays where not having a social life doesn't seem so awful. And that's all I can say about that, for now.

Take care, have a good weekend.

1 comment:

  1. I want to borrow that Vietnam book

    This is Big Hatt, by the way. When I first signed up for blogger 4 or 5 years ago, my nickname was Eggs.