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April 22, 2024

Ode to Midnight (or Breakfast at 3 a.m.)

By Tedi Trindle

Experts always seem to be dividing the world into two types of people. There are the A-types versus the B-types, those potty-trained too early versus the bottle feeders, the less fillings versus the taste greats. Now, I don't claim to be an expert at anything except my own opinion, but there are only two kinds of people in the world and they are none of the above. The world is divided into day people and night people.

I am a night person. I have always been one. When I was five, I used to pile all the covers at the end of the bed so my mother would think I was awake (and merely missing), then I'd crawl beneath them so I could sleep in. Most of the sunrises I have seen have been from the night side. There are few greater pleasures in life than watching the brightening horizon through sleepy eyes with an ice-cold bottle of beer.

Day people are sickening. They pop out of bed as if the sheets were on fire. They can smile and form coherent sentences without a single drop of coffee. Some of them actually sing in the morning. I know these things because someone once proposed to me before noon and, in my weakened condition, I said yes.

One of the grand ironies of the universe is that night people always marry day people. I think it's some kind of law. Being the law-abiding citizen that I am, I have dutifully complied. What's worse, I even produced a day person. It's frightening to think that somewhere, buried deep in my DNA, there lurks a gene for morning cheerfulness. If I were male, I could at least blame the milkman. Come to think of it, the hospital staff did take the baby to the nursery for a little while. So there was opportunity for a switch to be made. And I was really tired.

But, I digress. The world is set up for day people, so I must assume that they are in the majority. Either that, or all the voting took place in the morning and we night people missed it. Because of this discriminatory arrangement, I am often forced to try to pass for a day person. I hate it.

Day people wield all the power. They also look upon night people with great suspicion. They think there is something wrong with us. This is a misunderstanding I can easily clear up. Following is a list of night people facts for those day people who would like to be more openminded:

--if we're late for work, let us work later. You'll find we are more productive at five p.m. than at eight a.m. anyway.
--sleeping in means sleeping until you wake up, not seven a.m. sharp.
--noon is a happy time of day.
--there is something wonderful about coming home from work when everyone else is driving to work.
--sheets have a magnetic force of their own which is extremely powerful.
--life begins not at forty, but at midnight.
--we cannot be held responsible for anything we think, say or do until we've been awake at least four hours or had our first gallon of coffee.
--an alarm clock does not make a good present.
--the end of Daylight Savings Time should be a national holiday.
--breakfast tastes better at three a.m. than at seven a.m.
--"good morning" is a contradiction of terms.

We night people need to organize. We have nothing to lose but a few hours of daylight which we have not the slightest interest in anyway. And for those of you who may be wondering, not one word of these columns was ever conceived, let alone written, prior to mid-afternoon. Even if I could write in the morning, I wouldn't. I have more respect for you than that.
Article © Tedi Trindle. All rights reserved.
Published on 2003-05-19
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