Thursday, June 23, 2005


25 minutes into the conference and I'm doing fine. I'm thinking I'm going to make it through this.

My attention starts to drift... a yawn sneaks in, and my eyelids start to droop.


I open my eyes wide to let in some light and try to focus back on the lecture.
But that monotone voice is... so... soothing.

My eyelids are malfunctioning. They're heavy. I try to recruit my eyebrows to help lift my eyelids, but they're worthless. I try using my forehead muscles to raise my eyelids. That doesn't work either.

Must. Maintain. Focus.

Must. Stay. Awake.

I'm slipping. I feel sleepy tendrils dragging down my attention. I feel a strange and comforting sense of well being. I'm reaching zen.

WHOA! Was I asleep for a second?! My eyes spring open. I look around wildly and look up at the lecturer, who's looking back. I nod my head as if I have been following his lecture all along. "Yes, yes," I nod, "I see your point."

But meanwhile, halfway through my nodding, my eyelids are starting to fall again. The voice drones out into the background. I'm losing it.

I pinch my thigh. Ow! But I'm still sleepy.

Maybe I'll bite my tongue.

Ow. I shift my weight. I rub my eyes (inconspicuously). I try holding my breath. I'm not any more alert. I'm out of ideas on trying to stay awake.

I contemplate throwing in the towel and going into that sweet siren's song of slumber. But there's only three of us in the room. I. Must. Stay. Awake...