Getting started

I hate mornings. That’s how I’ve always been, and part of me loves the idea of always being that way. It’s like I think I’m part of some sub-culture or cool club of people who say “NO!” to society.  “I will not abide by your ‘rules’ and conform! The morning is when I say it is.” Or maybe it’s totally not that dramatic, but it’s funny how much pride you can derive from associating with phantom groups of people you make up in your head, just to justify your inadequacies.  Not that I am going to be so hyperbolic as to say that not being a morning person is inadequate, but the implications of the emotional fallout of being proud of it run deeper than the obvious.

If a day can be a microcosm of your life, yeah I went there, then being a late riser is just a lame way to live. I wake up 25 minutes before I have to be at work, that’s 125% of an episode of Seinfeld. I barely have enough time to do anything, let alone enjoy the morning. I’m 24 years old, and I’ve woken up with 25 minutes to go. I want to get fit, stop being lazy, wake up early, start writing, start producing material, go back to school (for astrophysics, something totally outside my skillset and experiential resume) find a girlfriend, move to Toronto, find a job there, and I want to do it all now, like right now. I know someone, hell, anyone will read this and say “boohoo, you want all those things? Just do them. Organize, plan blah blah blah.”  It’s not that easy. I’ve lived a life of coasting, cutting corners and prioritizing socializing over pretty much all else. I have had a blast doing it, and have a decent set of social skills to show for it, but a better balance could have been made. That balance might have led to a better person than the one that is writing this now, but we can’t live in the possible. Ultimately a lifetime of putting things off is no way to live. Hmmm, putting things off. That reminds me of something.

The snooze button adds up overtime, and continuing on my tenuous hold on this analogy, the snooze button has been all the extraneous decisions I have made in my life. Besides what school/program I want to go into, and coming to Korea, I have really taken my time in my decision making. After writing that sentence, I realize where the problem is! Wow. It’s not making the decision, it’s hitting the snooze button to many damn times before I take action. The decision is the alarm, EEHHHH EEEHHHHH EEEHHHHH (alarm clock noises) and I open my eyes. I see the clock, it reads 615am. I groan, and hit that big fat round button designed for the exact level of coherence you have when trying to find it, and sleep for another 9 minutes. 615am is 16 years old let’s say. By the time you’re 24, it’s 10am, and you say “shit! I slept in.” The sad truth is that you didn’t sleep in, you consciously decided to not take action…again, and again and again. That’s my life to this point, now it’s time to get up. It’s 10am, and as clichéd and as much as I hate to type it, I have to go out and compete with those people who have been awake since 615, since 16 years old, or younger. I have to try and figure out how to get the worm, yeah I said it. Not all is lost however, it’s just a matter of doing it. Working hard, learning from my mistakes, and trying to persevere through the battle with my lethargy.  No big deal.

It’s beyond tragic that a 24 year old man has to write out a whining and pouty exposition of his shortcomings to really see them for what they are. I guess sometimes it takes a bit of self-loathing, a good rant, and an amazing analogy (bazinga!) to get the ball rolling. At this point I don’t care. I’m ready, and I feel better than I ever have in the motivation department. I’m yelling to my mom, “I’m up, I’m up!!” now it’s just a matter of grabbing my bed sheets, ripping them off,  swinging my feet around and planting them on the ground. I might have to sit there for a minute or so but once I get up and shower, get my coffee and get dressed I’ll be out the door and on my way…and maybe then, I won’t suck at life. That makes me happy.

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~ by humanmoves on April 15, 2010.

2 Responses to “Getting started”

  1. The infamous alarm clock of Mr. Dillon Taylor. I can remember quite vividly (all too vividly) the horrors of that infernal machine. Living with you for a year Dillon taught me a lesson on what it means to be a heavy sleeper. I myself can sleep through anything, but only during my late night REM cycle, once 5:30 or 6:00 hits, my sleeping is a choice, yours, on the other hand, is an affliction.

    I feel it is appropriate for those who don’t know your morning routine to hear this particular tale, as it sums up Dillon’s alarm clock relationship and in my opinion helps to emphasize your analogy (all except the snooze button, for the life of me I cannot remember you ever using it).

    In 2006/07 Dillon, Pete, and myself (Andrew) shared a townhouse. It was a nice place, with a vertical design (3 stories divided into six half floors in a zig-zag pattern). Dillon won the pic lottery allowing him to have the master bedroom on the top floor. My room was the half floor below his, and Pete had the basement room. I was in fourth year and as such had the time honoured privilege of not starting class until later in the day. Dillon, a lowly third year often had morning classes(8:30). Set up complete, the following describes the nightmare that became an all too common occurance.

    Dillon and I were both night people, we would often stay up late, watching adult swim programming or engrossed in one or another of the final fantasy iterations. Not having class until say, 10:30 (sometimes as late as 12:30) I would set the alarm on my digital watch and wander off to sleep, secure in the fact that I could enjoy a pleasant sleep-in. 7:00 am, as I lay in my blissful half asleep morning haze, Dillon’s alarm goes off. And this was no ordinary alarm clock, this was the combination of Gilbert Godfrey and Fran Drescher getting into a screaming match with one another over who could could be more off tune into 500w amp with feedback. Thinking, its fine, he’ll get up and turn it off, I would roll over and try to get some more rest. 7:10, still going. 7:20, still going. 7:30, still blasting at full volume, no signs of life. This is where my question of the snooze button comes in, as if you have learned to use the snooze consistently Dillon, then that is a new trick indeed. On average maybe once a month I would enjoy the euphoric silence of nine minutes of snooze. Anyway, it was usually around this point, after vainly trying to block my ears (pillows, covers, clothes, anything at hand) that I would get fed up, get out of bed, go upstairs to Dillon’s room and try to wake him up. The general response was he would look at me, sometimes mumble something, then lay back down and go back to sleep. After a while I gave up on trying to wake him up and would simply unplug his alarm.

    My favorite anecdote from this time however, was the day I refused to get up. Sheer stubborn will, pillows and a hamper of newly cleaned clothes over my head kept me in bed (it must be noted however that despite all that, I could still hear his damn alarm, that’s how loud it was). After running straight for nearly an hour, Pete, who lived five floors and approximately thirty to forty feet (vertically mostly) away from Dillon, stomped up stairs to turn off Dillon’s alarm, before stomping back downstairs and back to sleep. The alarm woke the person who lived as far away from it as one could possibly live and still be in our townhouse, before waking Dillon.

    Dillon and I had many discussions (sometimes less than civil on my part I will admit) about his alarm, and to his credit he did try several things (setting it to a radio station, or to radio static) but these options were incapable of waking Dillon at all. In the end, only a solid 45 minutes to an hour of constant alarm could coax Dillon from his nightly reverie.

    On several occasions I warned Dillon that if his alarm went off like that once more that week, he would need to buy a new alarm clock. What I never told you Dillon was that on several occasions I contemplated grabbing my extension cord or filling my pillow case with a phone book and literally beating the living bajesus out of you until you were lucid.

    So that is my true life story of Dillon and the alarm. Now, as to your analogy. Despite my aforementioned confusion about your snooze, it is very apt. I’m glad that you have taken your morning problem, which you have been aware of for years, and in writing about it, achieved a form of self discovery. So I say onto you Dillon, it the context of your own analogy: Yes, making a plan is hard, following that plan is even harder, and even the course of achieving our fondest desires can feel like being kicked in the fellas repeatedly, but if you do not take some action, then only one of three possible outcomes can occur. One, you don’t change and the analogical me (or god forbid Pete) will be all that gets you up every morning. Two, One day life will come into your room and deliver you the most sever extension cord or phone book pillow case beating the world has ever seen, leaving you motivated, but with a pathological fear of extension cords and or phone book/pillow cases. Or three, and worst off all, one day you might just stop setting the alarm.

    • Best comment ever. The story is so vivid in my mind’s eye. I remember the look on Pete’s face. It was the same look you gave me every time we had one of our civil discussions lol. I have gotten better. I have a new tactic. I set 3 alarms on my cell phone 15 minutes apart, so i wake up progressively each time. It works for me now, but who knows, my nocturnal passenger might not like it eventually. Your conclusion and finishing comment about the piece really stuck Baird. What you said is true, it makes total sense and it made me really shake my head with that “wow, yeah, he’s totally right” kinda attitude. I appreciate your input, and respect it immensely. Thank you. It’s a shame we haven’t been able to have our FF and AS nights in a long time, but we’ll find some time to reunite the band eventually. thank you again, and talk to you soon.

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