Tuesday, July 03, 2007

In the dark.

After dating long distance for nearly a year, the Alex Dodd and I are only just beginning to discover our differences. So far, we haven't encountered any insurmountable problems, and our disagreements are usually amicably settled when he agrees that I'm correct, once again, just to placate me (or more accurately, because I am correct). But this past weeked, we finally came to a head on several key issues:

1) Whether to sleep with the blinds up or down.

Alex thinks that complete darkness is necessary to sleep and to combat insomnia. I think light streaming through my window in the morning helps me wake up and prepare me for another glorious day. He argues that northern Alberta's light confuses him, which I supposed is partially true. (This morning I woke up, thinking that I had slept through my alarm because it was so bright outside. But when I looked at my clock, it only read 4:23 a.m.) I argued that because of my nightmares, I don't like complete dark, because then when I wake up, I'm confused about where I am.

We determined that a compromise of some sort is necessary. I suggested he invest in one of those black satin eye covers. He told me this wasn't gonna happen. And if you ask me, that's not the spirit of compromise.

2) To nap or not to nap.

I hate napping.

During naptime in playschool, I'd gaze around at my classmates, happily sucking on their thumbs and drooling on their brightly coloured mats, only to wonder what the hell was wrong with them. At home, my Dad would try to get me to nap, and I'd pretend to sleep just to make him happy. I rarely even sleep on car rides. (Last summer in Australia, I had to take a hot, packed 15-hour night bus up the coast. Desperately needing rest, I swallowed some prescription sleeping pills to help me out, but I still couldn't fall asleep. Instead, the medication just drugged me up to the point where I couldn't move my limbs, but I was still fully concious.)

Even now, I don't nap. And when I do, I don't enjoy it. But Alex, the occassional insomniac, LOVES to nap, while I, also the occassional insomniac, recognize that sleeping during the day prevents sleep at night. On top of that, napping leaves me with dried-out contacts, fuzzy hair, a gross taste in my mouth, nightmares during the day and no real sense of rejuvination. Worst of all, sleeping in the middle of the day is a waste of time. Why sleep when you can be awake enjoying the day?

So why is this is a problem? Because Alex keeps trying to make me nap with him. He tries to trick me into it by telling me he just wants to cuddle, but I'm not that easily fooled. It's not going to happen, friend.

3) Movie time lighting.

Although I'll admit this is a little odd, I never watch movies at home with the lights off. It's mainly because I find it really hard on the eyes. (Exception: I prefer to watch movies with subtitles with the lights off.) Alex never watches movies at home with the lights on. We usually compromise and use the dimmer switch. This also becomes a problem when we're eating--I would never dream of eating in the dark because I like to see my food. Alex, however, could happily make and consume a 4-course meal with nothing more than the glow of a stove's burners.

Want to help us settle the argument? And got any suggestions for compromises?


  1. I'm going to have to side with Alex hardcore on the napping issue. Napping a waste of time?! More like the most luxurious, delicious use of time ever. Mmmmm. Your compromise should involve a hammock.

  2. I think napping is okay as long as there's a time limit. A nap should generally only last 10 minutes, 20 tops.

    As for the blinds, I used to prefer total darkness for the same reasons as Alex, but I also like the light in the morning for the same reason as you. My solution to this is to close the blinds half-way. It's dark, but not too dark, and just enough light comes through in the morning to wake me up.

    Failing any resolutions, I say dump him and go back to the wheat bag. (Just kidding Alex)

  3. lol jess.

    1. Maybe you could invest in one of those 'light' alarm clocks. They get brighter like the sun is rising so that you have light in the morning.

    Darkness is the best way to sleep..according to the sleep doctors...if he's an insomniac, then I would sacrifice here.

    2. napping...if you give up on the light at night, and force him to exercise, then he shouldn't need to nap so badly. I personally love to nap. You could do something else during that time. Plus, a good nap shouldn't be longer than 30 minutes (also according to sleep doctors)
    Either way, he shouldn't force you to nap to make up for his own sleep difficulties.

    3. i think you should alternate between lights on and off during dinner (and subsequent movies) based on who cooked.

  4. Anonymous4:22 AM

    you should have the lights on while watching a movie. It is easier on the eyes. Because the light levels on a tv set are always changing the eye has to keep re-adjusting to compensate and this creates the strain. A low light level should be maintaned to help your eye keep the focal length it needs.

  5. You know we had an e-mail thread argument going at work today abiout 30 messages long about whether or not it was better to turn the overhead flourescents in the office on or off. It's quite the retarded argument.

    But apparently it's "a well-known fact" that using a monitor (or watching TV/movies) in dim lighting is better for your eyes somehow. I think the guy who said that is on crack.

  6. I'm just having fun picturing the Alex Dodd in one of those silky eye masks. Make him do that - for sure.

    Random aside: check out Amy Winehouse she fucking rocks!!!

  7. Placate was the key word in this post.

    I like how you're making it sound like I make you nap. "NAP, Damnit!"

    I really like indiazi's compromise. Let me sleep in the dark and I'll a)let you open the blinds first thing in the morning and b)stop trying to convince you to take naps. As for movie's let just go with dim, or watch more movie's with subtitles.

    And for the record, I will always take epic naps in the middle of the day just because I can and because I enjoy them. I'm talking like 2, 3, even 4 hour naps. Talk about refreshing. That's more sleep than a student gets per night. I may even take one today.

  8. Argument 1 - The comprimise is simple. Use a night light and have Alex facing away from it.

    Argument 2 - Cuddle with him while he naps.

    Argument 3 - Dimmer switch is the best thing here. Or watch the movies in your own room while on a speaker phone. However this does mean that there will be no cuddling or groping the movie.

  9. I can't stand when other people nap around me, so him napping and you not napping is sort of already a compromise. I see the two extremes as you both nap or you both stay up.

  10. I think Ralph Wiggam said it best -- "Oh boy, sleep! That's where I'm a viking!"

    Here is a link to a good clinic that will help the two of you resolve these and other future disagreements.

    Those eye things are called "Bucky Shades". My father-in-law swears by both those and the Bose noise cancelling headphones.

    "Whatever gets you through the night is alright, is alright..."

  11. I just have to say, that is quite possibly one of my favourite Monty Python sketches of all time.