Are you one of those people who wake up in the morning, fully refreshed and singing with happiness at the start of a bright new day?
Well, most of us aren't. And frankly, we'd rather those of you who are would knock off the racket. We're trying to get a little last minute sleep before staggering off to get our morning coffee.
Those final minutes in bed are golden.
You know the ones I mean, the last precious moments, still snug and warm under the covers, fully awake and knowing you have to get up. But not just yet. No, just a few minutes more.
This is why the snooze button is so popular on the alarm clock. People just do not want to get out of bed in the morning. Especially kids. Anyone who has tried to drag a 9 year old out of bed at 7:30 AM to prepare for an 8:30 AM school day knows exactly what I mean.
But even for adults, overcoming the morning inertia can be an exercise (and I use that word with its loosest possible meaning) of insidious procrastination.
Luckily for my family, we have an almost infallible system for overcoming this daily problem. We call our system "The Dogs."
The way this works is that Doug, our larger, main dog, will wake up promptly at 6:30, sit by my side of the bed and place his paw on my back. We call this, "Giving The Paw."
The process works something like this:
Me: "Ok Doug, good boy."
Ten seconds go by.
Me: "Ok, Doug. Ok."
Another ten seconds go by.
Me: "Coming Doug, Coming."
At this point there is an air of frantic insistence in Doug's pawing. The message is clear, either I get up to take him out or suffer the consequences.
Now, Doug is an 85 pound Labrador Retriever, and he is capable of producing some pretty hefty consequences.
Rather than face the prospect of scraping a 3 pound consequence off the living room carpet, I haul myself out of bed to take him out.
An astute reader may recall that I used the term "Dogs" to describe our automatic wake up system.
The astute reader may further assume that there is a second dog involved in this process in the unlikely event that Doug fails to produce the desired result.
The astute reader is quite correct. Zippy, our second dog, is nowhere near as subtle and restrained as Doug when it comes to announcing his morning needs.
While Doug may sit demurely by the side of the bed and indicate his desires with a considerate paw, Zippy will climb onto the bed, stick his wet nose in your face, ear or eye, whichever is most conveniently exposed, and sneeze.
This method has never failed to elicit the desired response. And has some obvious advantages over Doug's method, although for obvious reasons, I prefer Doug's system to Zippy's.
In either case, we are now up and ready to begin our day.
The following poem was written after commiserating with another family member who wanted to lie in bed for just a few more of those precious minutes this morning.
I'll Get Up In Just A Minute
Each morning when I slowly wake
I like to lie in bed,
Ignoring all the thoughts that skip
And clamor in my head.
The daily deeds that must be done,
The tasks which will not keep,
The many errands I must run
All drag me from my sleep.
I try to close my eyes once more,
And repossess my dreams,
But give up, rising to the chore
Of facing life's regimes.