Jun 17, 2009

Wed: I don't like getting up early

What time is it right now? Is it past 5pm? Cause if it’s not I’m probably not fully awake yet. You people who are, you people who pop out of bed like it’s Christmas morning everyday of the year, I envy you people a little. At least I used to. I used to think that waking up early and the enjoyment of getting up before the rooster was something that warranted jealousy. I guess on some levels it still is, but over time I’ve begun to realize that not waking up early is the way to go. Nearly every fiber of me is convinced of this, and absolutely every fiber when consulted at 7:30am. (If you consulted me any earlier you’d just get some kind of weird unintelligible grunting answer, and I wouldn’t remember what I told you. Which is kind of a weird thought, and makes me wonder if it’s possible that I have some kind of alternate life between the hours of 5am and 9am that I never remember? If I live to be 70 years old, that’s almost 12 years that could’ve been lived by some alternate, early morning version of me that I just don’t remember. Odd, almost as odd as the length of this parenthetical aside) Back to the point. There must be a reason mornings and I don’t see eye to eye; some rational explanation. Here’s a few of the best I could come up with.

I enjoy peace. Quiet. And as much as those coffee commercials try and convince me otherwise; mornings are not peaceful. Birds are screaming, cars are honking, garbage trucks are somehow missing mechanical slam dunks with your black bin and instead flinging your trash all over your driveway. It’s a loud, ugly mess. Everyone seems to have bought into that early bird gets the worm adage, and never seem to put together that if you’re on a jam packed freeway with 80,000 other people, then none of you are the early bird. You’re all just right, smack on-time, and miserable because of it. No, mornings are not the tranquil escapes that they’re rumored to be.

I’m not entirely sure why people think they are getting a jump on the day by waking up early. I’m sure back in the days of farming and such when sunlight was at a premium it was true, but today….probably not so much. I for one would rather take care of business the night before. Studies actually show that people work late at night are more productive than the crazy eager beaver counterparts. Do you know why those people are getting up so early? It’s because they didn’t work hard enough the night before and now they’re trying to catch up. Even worse they couldn’t sleep all night because all they could think about was how they had work they had to do “first thing in the morning, can’t wait, need to do”. People who do the work the night before can go to bed satisfied; knowing that everything is done, finished, and sleep better for it.

Still not convinced? Let’s move on to really simple science then. The last science class I took was Physical Science 143 or some such class. We studied volcanoes, colored maps with crayons, and tried to turn on little tiny light bulbs with some batteries and wire. Needless to say I didn’t learn a lot. One thing I do remember however is the Newton’s first law : a body at rest stays at rest and a body in motion stays in motion. That pretty much sums the whole thing up. Once resting it’s inefficient to try and get back to work, better to slowly get the body in motion again and ride that motion well past midnight, then work can really get done. It’s scientific, it must be true.

On a more personal note, I grew up in the desert. It’s unbearably hot during the day, and instead of needlessly banging a sweaty head against this problem and continuing to force ourselves to get up early and face the blistering sun head on all day, it might make more sense to move to a more nocturnal schedule. Take a cue from the rest of the ecosystem and sleep in a little. It’s quiet and peaceful, it’s more productive, it’s recommended by Sir Isaac Newton, and based on all the other nocturnal creatures in the desert; it’s what nature intended.


  1. I agree. Getting up early sucks. Also, may I mention that your traffic situation sounds oddly like my morning commute in the center of global warming causation headquarters: LA.

  2. For those of us who DO rise early...you make a few good points, especially the heat one. The peacefulnes of the night I think can be cancelled out by the beauty of the fresh morning as God reveals a brand day for us. On the other hand, acomplishing things can be done at ANY time of day though, so, my guess is that there are just as many late risers who have to stay up even later or, as hideous as it sounds, wake up earlier , to get something finished they couldn't do yesterday. Procrastination and laziness are part of the human condition and late risers are not immune. Newtons law is also universal so you cannot use that as an arguement for your position since we can use it as well. Just turn the clock ahead a few hours and our moving bodies will stay moving.