Sleep Deprivation

Sooo…I don’t get much sleep during the week…typically getting to bed well after 11 pm and getting up for work at 4:30 am…

Now, I’m not one of those braggarts that can get by on 5 hours sleep a night. I need the full 8, and I’m not even ashamed of it. Oh, I can function on a lot less, but eventually I’ll pay the price.

This week has been typical…by Friday night I was functioning strictly on sheer willpower. Ugh.

Saturday I was going to sleep late…even if it killed me.

Of course, the wife woke me up early.

Her: “Honey, I’m going to Walmart.”
Me: “mhghhhm.” (translation…”That’s delightful dear. Have a good time.”)
Her: “I have to get some breakfast stuff…”
Me: “grrbblatt…” (translation…”Oh, good. Would you pick up some of those wonderful crescent rolls and some sausage. I’m in the mood.)
Her: “…and you need shampoo.”
Me: “snokle.” (translation…”Yeah, I’m out of shaving-cream too, and we need lightbulbs.)
Her: “Sex.” (she does this often, just to see if I’m paying attention).
Me: “kaaaaaaayyyy.” translation…”Anytime babe, but your hair will get mussed up if we do it right now, and we still haven’t found your panties from yesterday afternoon.”
Her: “Oh, I need some money too.”
Me: “blrrrrrrrbbofogrg” translation…”Sure. I went to the bank yesterday. Take some money out of my wallet, but leave me enough for gas this weekend.
Her: “Thanks! I took fifty dollars. Love you! See you later!”
Me: “ugh.” translation…”Love you too. Be careful.”

Finally! More sleep! It took some time, but I had finally hit that “deep” spot…that segment of deep sleep where I was truly unconscious, basically that single worst possible moment to be woken up. The one where it’s certain that you’ll be completely confused and disoriented if disturbed.

The phone did it. I hate that particular electronic tone the cordless phones use. It’s probably the only thing that could have dragged me up out of that deep darkness at the moment.

I grabbed for it on the second ring.


The alarm clock wouldn’t answer. I dropped it to the floor and grabbed for the phone again on the third ring…that artificial urgency the phone somehow induces building intensely inside me.


The cat said, “Meow.” and licked me on the ear. Then he started to wiggle in my grip so I turned him loose. I was probably talking into the wrong end and he hadn’t been ringing anyway.

My heart was pounding as I frantically grabbed for the phone again. This time I tried to crack one eye open to try to see what I was doing but only just managed to pry it up enough to whack it soundly with the novel I’d been reading the night before. I could clearly hear the wet “smack” as I jammed the thing into my face.

“Ah! Oooo. Crap!” I dropped the heavy book and clapped my hand over my stinging eye. I hope it doesn’t result in a black eye. I’d hate to try to explain how Harry Potter gave me a shiner. Why’d those books have to be so thick anyway?

On the fifth ring I finally managed to grab the darn phone.


“Ur…Hello? Danny? Is that you? Is Carey around?”

I frantically scanned my memory, figuring there should be enough information available to be able to determine several things…tops on the list would be:
1) Who I was.
2) Where I was.
3) What the hell was this thing in my hand and why was it talking into my ear?
4) Who was Carey, and since this thing in my hand wanted to know…
5) …Where was she?
6) Where’s the cat think he’s going with my Harry Potter novel?
7) AND just who’s the son-of-a-mule that clobbered me in the eye?

The mouth suddenly engaged and I spoke my answer into the phone.

Frankly, given the circumstances, I figure I did pretty well.

“Carey? Carey? What the…?” My brain connected (or shorted) and retrieved the information…bits of it anyway. “Oh…yeah…her. Ur…she went to Wallmart with fifty dollars for sex.”

There was dead silence on the other end of the phone. Shortly I heard a quiet “click” that indicated the other party had hung up.

I blinked, rubbed my abused eye, dropped the phone on the floor, rolled over, and went back to sleep.

I didn’t even feel guilty about the lost call…

See, we knew the caller.

It was just her father. Surely he’d call back?

Daniel Meyer

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