Saturday, August 6, 2011

Sleep On It

The other day, for some reason, i was fearfully sleepy all day. Woke up yawning, and couldn't stop all day. Of course, i also couldn't stop the work all day, either. From before dawn until my night owl husband decides to go to bed, the fun around here never stops.

It made me think about naps, and our culture.

Naps are for slackers, at least according to corporate culture.


Naps, or siestas in the middle of the day, have been around for centuries in many cultures. These people know what science is now proving, that napping is good for you, health-wise and productivity-wise.

How good?

Pilots on long flights that take a 30 minute nap have a 16 percent average increase in reaction time. Without it, their time declines 34%.

Sara Mednick, a sleep researcher, gave test subjects a memory challenge, allowing half to nap.
Those who napped dramatically outperformed those who didn't.

Encouraging employees to take 30 minute naps every day would increase productivity in the afternoons by double or even triple.

So why the slacker image?

Do we really think only weaklings need to rest?

Is it the "tough it out" spirit?

Well, whatever it is, i'm going to try to remember to give myself a nap next time i feel that wiped out.

Today is:

Accession Day -- United Arab Emirates (accession of H.H. Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan)

Best Elf Awards -- Fairy Calendar

Cowes Week begins -- Cowes, Isle of Wight (through the 13th, the largest, longest-running, and most prestigious international sailing regatta)

Cranham Feast -- Cranham, Gloucestershire, England (through the 8th, a traditional feast and fair that dates back to the 1700's)

Fancy Farm Picnic -- Fancy Farm, KY, US (with a name like this, you know you'll have Southern hospitality at its best!)

Feast of Everything Green Except Money -- Hooray for veggies! You'll need them before you have that root beer float.

Feast of Transfiguration -- Orthodox Christian

Ferry Fair -- South Queensferry, Edinburgh, Scotland (centuries old fair, around the time of the Burry Man Parade, originally for farmers to find labour for harvest, now for fun, through the 10th)

Festival of Nut and Ra; Chief Festival of Thoth -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar

Hiroshima Day

Independence Day -- Bolivia; Jamaica

National Fresh Breath (Halitosis) Day (Shouldn't that read, anti-halitosis?)

National Mustard Day (Sweetie had an uncle who would have loved this. Ate mustard on everything, including his apple pie. Bigger Girl also eats lots of mustard.)

National Root Beer Float Day

Peace Festival -- Peace Memorial Park, Hiroshima, Japan

Qi Xi -- China (Double Seven or Chinese Valentine's Day, the 7th day of the 7th moon, the day all the magpies in the world form a bridge so the cowherd and the weaver can meet across the Milky Way, which separates them.)

St.Hormisdas' Day (patron of grooms and stable boys)

Tall Timbers Day -- Grand Rapids, MN, US (through tomorrow, lumberjack shows, chainsaw carvers, and lots of fun)

Tanabata Festival -- Sendai, Japan (Japan's largest Tanabata 'Star Festival', through the 8th)

Tan Hill Festival -- Ancient Celtic Calendar (Teinne, the Celtic Holy Fire)

Wiggle Your Toes Day -- internet generated, and my suggestion is to celebrate it with a cool drink out by the pool!

Birthdays Today:

M. Night Shyamalan, 1970
Piers Anthony Dillingham Jacob, 1934
Andy Warhol, 1928
Robert Mitchum, 1817
Lucille Ball, 1911
Clara Bow, 1905
Hoot Gibson, 1892
Alexander Fleming, 1881
Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt, 1861
Alfred Lord Tennyson, 1809

Today in History:

Gonzalo Jimenez de Quesada founds the city of Bogota, Colombia, 1538
Holland (The Dutch Republic) sells Brazil to Portugal and the two
countries sign the Treaty of The Hague, 1661
The first private military school in the US, Norwich University, is
founded in Vermont, 1819
The Russian Geographical Society is founded in Saint Petersburg, 1845
William Kemmler becomes the first person to be executed by the electric chair, 1890
Alice Ramsey takes three friends (none of whom could drive) to become the first women to complete a transcontinental auto trip, 1909
Gertrude Ederle becomes the first woman to swim the English Channel, 1926
Prometheus, a bristlecone pine and the world's oldest tree, is cut down by the US National Forest Service, for reasons even they cannot explain, 1964
The Federal Voting Rights Act is signed, 1965
A low-pressure system that redeveloped off the New South Wales coast dumps a record 328 millimeters (13 inches) of rain in a day on Sydney, 1986
The United Nations Security Council orders a global trade embargo against Iraq in response to Iraq's invasion of Kuwait, 1990
NASA makes the still disputed announcement that the ALH 84001 meteorite, thought to originate from Mars, contains evidence of primitive life-forms, 1996
The incoming coalition government of the United Kingdom discontinues the use of the controversial ContactPoint database of all children in that country, 2010


  1. Hooray for naps!

    My only problem is they sometimes make me MORE sleepy afterwards. But they're still delicious.


  2. Napping proponent here. It works. Got it from my dad who learned--in the army--to nap after lunch. He also napped after supper.

  3. Crabby, keep them short enough, and that usually doesn't happen. 20-30 minutes is recommended.

    Good for you, and your dad, Leah. Although i think if i napped after supper i would be up all night.