4:30 AM – First alarm. Woke me from a dream about a meeting of everyone I’ve ever known, discussing the possible next things President Bush is going to do to stay in power. Damn all this political thinking is getting to me. Sleep without rest, too tired to get up (the first alarm is set to the time I’d need to get up to go running before work) so I shut off the first alarm and slide down the slope to sleep again.

5:03 AM – Wake up again before the alarm. Hate it when that happens. As my consciousness gathers itself I realize that I was awakened by Smacky meowing and scratching at the door. My bladder is full but I judge that it can wait until the actual alarm goes off. I roll over, find a cool spot in the bed, yank the covers up over my shoulders, and sleep again finds me.

5:35 AM – This time the dream is about being caught by my mom in bed masturbating. Which never actually happened. I suppose this is better than the political dreams… but maybe not. The shame of it has awakened me 10 minutes before the alarm will go off. I hate that. I feel even more sleepy than an hour before, and I start to seriously consider calling in sick to work. I mean, I always think about it, every single morning, but this time I give it a serious rundown of the drawbacks and advantages. Or at least, I start to before I remember that I’ve got 10 more minutes of sleep I could be getting. Nighty-night (sorta).

5:45 AM – Second alarm. My heart explodes into action, my entire body spasms at the noise, but my eyes stay curiously clenched shut. I pry them open to confirm, that, yes, I am still in bed and not, say, plastered to the ceiling. Also the bed’s in my own bedroom, and not, say, in Abu Ghraib. Yay. My first thought upon being able to think again is to calculate how much sick time I should have, which turns out to be exactly one day, 8 hours, since last Friday was the start of a pay period and I should have earned another half-day. Damn, I really could call in sick. And what would I do? I would sleep all day, then regret taking the day off but not doing anything constructive. It’s not like my job is that difficult. Heck, with my new boss it’s much less stressful than before. I know! Maybe I’ll just call in late.

5:55 AM – I drag myself out of bed, carefully step over the meowing Smacky in the hallway, who has prostrated himself at my feet begging for attention, and stumble down the hall to the computer. Still suspended between sleep and not-sleep, I log in to my work email. I’m looking for an option to delay sending an email until a specified time. Outlook has this feature but since I’m at home all I have is the web-based version.

5:56 AM – Smacky is stretching himself out and up, reaching for my shoulders. With a twitch he jumps up on my shoulders, purring, as I sit in front of the computer, and settles himself in. I have my answer about the email option: nope. What to do? Back to bed, set the alarm for later, get up and send the email saying I’m going to be late, then back to bed for a while? Or… groan… now that I’m up I might as well stay up. Smacky starts biting my shoulder through the thin t-shirt, prompting a yelp from me. I twist and shake him off, shouting “Nononono! No biting!” He scampers off, now in a playful mood, since I’m too sleepy to pet him, and attacks the chair in the living room. I hear the skritching sounds of him tearing at the fabric.

5:07 AM – Until I glance at the clock in the bathroom I was unaware of two things: a) that after shaking Smacky off I had sat, barely conscious, in front of the computer for at least 10 minutes, and b) I had missed the bathroom clock during my Daylight Savings Time Reset “Spring ahead, Fall back!” Extravaganza. Luckily, all the important clocks in my house set themselves (cell phone, computer, laptop, VCR). I’ll deal with it later. I start up the shower, which always prompts Smacky to attack my feet, which always prompts me to jump into the shower before it’s entirely hot water. I reflect on having gone from “too tired to go to work” through “too tired to go to work on time” to “too tired but going to work anyway”.

Pretty normal for Monday.