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St. James Plaindealer - St. James, MN
  • Hot Chocolate and a siesta

  • I want you to imagine I'm former President Richard Nixon telling you something I'm desperately hoping you'll believe: I am not a coffee drinker.

    So, I know that's not a huge confession – it pales in comparison to Nixon telling the press that he was innocent of any wrongdoing in the Watergate incident – but there aren't too many of us out there.
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  • I want you to imagine I'm former President Richard Nixon telling you something I'm desperately hoping you'll believe: I am not a coffee drinker.
    So, I know that's not a huge confession – it pales in comparison to Nixon telling the press that he was innocent of any wrongdoing in the Watergate incident – but there aren't too many of us out there.
    I don't really like the bitter taste and I'm not dedicated enough to being an adult that I'm willing to acquire a taste for coffee. When I go out for a hot beverage, nine times out of ten it's a hot chocolate. Even that is rare for me. My body reacts poorly to caffeine so I do my best to avoid it as much as possible.
    This does make for an occasional long day at the office. It is a regular occurrence that at about 1 or 2 p.m. I'm in desperate need of a nap.
    There is actually plenty of biological support for humans needing an early afternoon nap. In Spain and other warm temperature countries, the siesta – as it's known – is a normal mid-afternoon activity.
    This is what Wikipedia had to say about the event: The homeostatic pressure to sleep starts growing upon awakening. The circadian signal for wakefulness starts building in the (late) afternoon. As Harvard professor of sleep medicine Charles A. Czeisler notes, "The circadian system is set up in a beautiful way to override the homeostatic drive for sleep."
    In between this homeostatic and wakeful period is a lull where many people get tired and would benefit from a nap. If you're like me that time is 1 or 2 p.m.
    I usually reserve my more mindless tasks for this period of the day, but I am petitioning for a couch in the back room, where the Plaindealer hides its writers. It would be a great place for those people who make it into the office to sit while I interview them. Ok, I might be stretching a bit – but you get the point.
    If you're tired in the mid-afternoon, there is no need to be ashamed of yourself. You are not alone and it is perfectly normal. A lot of us fight the drowsies with some caffeine, but since that isn't an option for me I'll just fight through the afternoon lull with yawns and head scratching until the day sleeping under my desk in the middle of the day isn't considered 'strange'.

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