Went to see the doctor, said she'd give me the cure. That reminds me of a couple different songs and more than a few B movies.
In reality, a recent visit with my Hippocratic advocate was fairly routine, but for that extra little peek under the hood -- for old time's sake.
Considering the miles on this model '66, and all the mishaps, car crashes, falls, bumps, bruises, broken bones, stitches, occupational and recreational abuse of my youth, plenty of miles remain unturned on the odometer. Lots of places to see, people to meet and things to do. The show is far from over.
However, that passing grade, it didn't come without a 'but' ... 'But what? I mean, what's up Doc?', I asked.
The blue moon on New Year's Eve 2009, from a prone shooting position in the back yard
'Your blood is running a little hot', she replied, and asked, 'Are you under any extra stress these days'? I reminded her I'm a professional juggler. 'Then, you might be getting too good at that act ... for your own good', she said. Knowing of my active lifestyle, and generally healthy habits, she probed a little further, 'How much do you typically sleep every night'? To which I proudly replied, '5 to 6 hours ... on a good night'. She said the symptoms were those of classic workaholizm. I just like to live.
Turns out, log-sawing is highly underrated; at least, in my personal experience. She not-so-gently brought me up to speed on this and that other study and all the findings and confirmed connections with too little sleep and everything from heart and lung function, muscle recovery, virility, memory, and mental clarity.
She asked me if I naturally sleep that little or if I make myself wake up after only 5 - 6 hours. Honestly? As far as I'm concerned, the fact is, there's just around 10 pounds of $### in every 5 pound day so to be caught sleeping much more than that, just never added up for me, anyways. But apparently, according to her, I'm essentially taking a long nap in between rounds. I never complain about practical matters. It's just that there's a lot of living and doing to be done and only so much time. The recommended duration of daily sleep? We all know the answer, but she went one better. Not 8, but more like 9 hours a day ...
Then, she hit me with gnarliest paradox of all. Not sleeping enough or what I refer to as trying to live as much as possible while the circus is in town, can ... CUT YOUR LIFE SHORT! Son of A #####! That, right there, is some Sharkspearian Irony, if I've ever smelled it. Do the math. It's pretty simple, really. Take an average day and roll it out from there.
Based on the standard lifestyle average of work hard, play hard, pet the dog, spend time with the family, prepare your tax return ... and sleep -- you can figure, again on average, 8 hours work, 8 hours (fill in the blank) and 8 hours ... of recommended sleep or what I lovingly refer to as legitimate 'downtime'.
Without exaggeration, I'll sincerely attest to not being at all familiar with the standardized average 8-hour work day. If we're applying the definition of average as: typical, common or ordinary, that would explain why.
If you think of life very simply in thirds, the whole sleep thing isn't so disconcerting when applied to a single day. But run that same math out to, say, a 90-year LIFE. Cue the little drummer boy ... and figure on sleeping for THIRTY OF THOSE YEARS!
I've thought about what the doctor prescribed, those 8 or even 9 hours of sleep. Then, I thought about that notion of dozing through 30 years. Since I plan on celebrating a triple digit lifespan, make it 33 years or 12,045 days ... I'll stop there.
In the end, and all throughout, life is a constant trade-off. You can't be everywhere at once and can't do more than a few things at a time without losing necessary focus. No, I'm not so fantastical in my thinking that my untimely demise will result from something as simple as counting too many or not enough sheep, but the trade-off? It's compelling.
I've decided not to sleep on it or lose any sleep about, though. Instead, I'll go a week or so, without an alarm dictating the sleep pattern, and just sort of see what happens. In the meantime, 2010 is no less a big year than those gone by, but there are some special things in store; happenings and accomplishments that will only be realized because of the efforts exerted and sacrifices made ... before. Every year, every day happens, but once.
Alright. Enough of that soft-core philosophizing. Whether or not we're dreaming or scheming, may we all kick maximum ass for each and every of the 358 days left in 2010.
Sweet Dreams - When You Get The Chance,