I’ve always been prejudiced against the morning. I inherited it legitimately from my father, who would stay up (he was a midnight shift cop) and watch the trash movies on USA’s UP! ALL NIGHT with me, a show hosted, in quite bipolar fashion, alternatively by Gilbert Gottfried, who you could tell would just rather be ordering a medium soup somewhere as soon as his commission arrived, or Rhonda Shear, the busty model/comedian you’ll recognize from the leggy dame scenes with Mel Brooks in SPACEBALLS.
I would carry this habit of weird movies in the middle of the night into college, when I was part of a motley band of misfits. We always thought we had pulled one over on the morning when we managed to party so late that the sun came up, and we were drinking and shouting off of some porch or window sill, mocking the seven am jogger and chanting our personal parody of the Kiss song “I want to rock’n’roll all ni-ight, and part of the next day!” At the time it was snarky and charming. You could imagine Audrey Plaza there, if she hadn’t probably been eleven years old at the time. I have employed this strategy less and less as my life has been populated increasingly by day jobs and coffee and less by bartered klonopin and combat boots.
There are three ways to get yourself up early in the morning. Don’t let anyone tell you different.
One, just do it. Set yourself a reasonable bed time, somehow achieve something in the proximity of this bed time, then wakeup on time, I guess. Snore.
Slightly less popular is to set an alarm or three, and completely disregard the impending reality of the early rise. This has never agreed with me, but some folks either don’t believe in the future, or are those kindsa sonsabitches that can just wake up all Bill Nye the Science Guy in the morning, snap their bow tie on and get cracking. This is the worst kind of human being, and probably the same guy at which we shook our seven am beers. He owns one of those fleece earmuff/headband monstrosities. HIs wife also has one. They match. I’m getting kind of angry writing this.
The third method is to line up a chain of debauchery and laziness in a morbidly organized fashion, like Harpo Marx playing croquet, with the final wicket being an inevitable, sensible bed time. The most basic version of this is to party all night, and power through the following day until you switch to caffeine and tv and short brisk walks, the sunlight bleaching your bloodshot, Daywalker eyes, convincing you from here on out that Depeche Mode was right and you’re going to spend the rest of your life after sunset, preferably in the back of a limousine with a Austrian lady-of-leisure named Gretchen who never wears colors, but whosebag is somehow constantly replenished with cocaine, weed, and valium.
If you already kill at the piano, I think would easily evolve into a career of being Warren Zevon. I’m surprised “macabre troubadour” isn’t a more popular a career path.
In an effort to be more “productive”, I’ve been flirting with this “waking up early” idea. It’s pretty abhorrent, but it could be a necessary evil. This year instead of one or two new years resolutions, which I’m not a big fan of anyway, I’ve created a list of fifty very finite goals of various sizes, from big, structural things (publish a graphic novel), to little cookie-bite accomplishments, like acquiring an upgraded projector for my house, to interpersonal things like “send more letters home”.
Accordingly, I’ve committed myself to writing thirty blogs. It’s a lot less than once a week, but I plan on getting very busy with BRANDI: QUEEN OF SKULLS, the aforementioned graphic novel project (more on this later), and I do better with flexibility than rigidity.
For now, though, I’m taking my incredible desire to cross things off of lists and finally putting it to broader use.
At times, I have anxiety that I’m going to soften up, to allow myself to normalize, and that someday I may too own a fleece ear warmer.
But then I think, “No I won’t, I listen to AC-fucking-DC and drink miller high life out of 16 oz. cans. You morning jogging fuckers will never take me alive!”
So, let the gods be with me. I’ll be updating my progress on all these fronts here. Aren’t you excited?