Friday, June 27, 2008

26 Years Lost Out of 78 Allowed Us

So we live to about 78, the insurance people tell us. Yeah, I know: Your grandmother cashed in her chips at 96 and your grandfather made it to 93. Doesn’t matter; the average lifespan is about 78, combining men and women.

26 of those years being spent unconscious, asleep. One-third of our life is spent horizontal, eyes closed, out like a light. So your grandfather spent 31 years sleeping, granny, 32.

What could you do with those extra 25-30 years? Learn more? Do more? Or waste the time?

One of the queens of England, possibly Elizabeth I, was to have said, as her last words: “All my possessions for a moment of time.”

Sleep, however, is a necessity. From the giraffe’s half-hour per day to the cat’s fourteen hours, we need it even if we haven’t figured out why. And, no, we have no idea why it is we need to conk out on a nightly basis. All we can be sure of is the effects of sleep deprivation, which include hallucinations and, I have found out, for cats death.

So we really have not wasted that time; it’s part of life. Still, I’d rather not need to be unconscious for one-third of my life. It’s like paying for a six-day vacation but only enjoying four of them. What a scam!


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