When I was but a wee struggle my darling mother,( who deserves some kind of award just in general, I mean, the woman took me to the Renaissance fair like 50 times, I mean, no she didn't, that never happened, kidding!) would tuck my brother and I into bed nightly, intoning that famous line from Hamlet that inspired tenth grade essays the world over and one terrible film. Now, I am quite sure that my mother was not attempting to introduce us to the concept of suicide at such an early age, and in fact I didn't really understand the reference until later in my life. However, recently, as sleep has become more and more of a vanishing commodity in my life, that line torn from the mouth of the melancholy dane has began to haunt me.
Now, I have never been one to experience sleepless nights. With the rare exception I can usually sleep like a log and have through tempests and clear skies alike. When I was younger and my neighborhood was less gentrified and more crack den, I would snooze blissfully, happily unaware of gunshots and police sirens blaring through the night. I had a gift, a rare talent to sleep on regardless of the circumstances, and I don't know what sin I committed, but I think it's gone. Something about the combination of summer heat and attention hungry kittens has wrecked havoc on my ability to sleep, and I find myself waking up at 7am every morning with a start and fitfully tossing and turning until I can no longer pretend that Mr. Sandman is coming back. Then, staring at the expectant furry face of a small demon disguised as a cat, I throw off the covers and head towards the computer for a breakfast date with my boyfriend hulu as light begins to fill my house.
I can't just blame the gatitos, however. The truth is, when you consider the world the way it is today, how can anybody be sleeping that soundly? I swear, sometimes it's like the thought of the new season of Mad Men is the only thing that keeps the world moving. I couldn't say whether I'm waking up every morning because of everything I read in the newspapers or because my back is sometimes mistaken for a scratching post, but I do know this: My waking life may be something of a struggle lately, but it's beating my time asleep hands down. For example, the hole in the ozone layer is shrinking. People seem to have finally stopped talking about Twilight. They recently opened up a new ice cream place a block from my office. The silver lining, my friends. It's out there. Trust me, I wake up early enough in the morning to catch it.
It's been a while since I found a song I loved enough to recommend to anyone, but the creepy sweetness of Joanna Newsome's The Book of Right ON has me hooked.
Leah Franqui is a fairly interesting person/director/writer/reader/eater/drinker. She likes ugly dogs and dislikes her hair in the morning. She's a sucker for environmental causes and plays hardball with deals on chewing gum. She is a struggle.