Friday, January 07, 2011

Please! No more texts between 9pm and 9am.
(No calls, either!)

Most days, I'm in bed by 10pm.

I'm up by 4:30am.

Most people who have my phone number know this.

Yet the other night a dear friend decided to send me a chatty text after 11pm.

It immediately woke me up. I immediately sent a reply:

"Plz no txts after 9pm!!! I get up at 4:30am!!!"

The next day the friend sent a text wanting to know why I didn't want her to text late at night: Because she wouldn't get a quick reply? Or because the phone alerts me to every text and wakes me up?

It's the latter - as I stated in my text.


Like many people, I use the cell phone as a backup alarm.

It sits on the nightstand, next to the bed.

I keep the volume on "high," because I must wear earplugs to sleep. (If I didn't wear earplugs, I'd be up all night with the upstairs neighbors - insomniacs who are awake and pacing on the very creaky wood floors and banging stuff around directly over my head every 90 minutes all night every night without fail).

So please! No texts between 9pm and 9am.

* * *

A couple of weeks ago I was enjoying a blissful late-morning slumber on the only day I get to sleep in. I was thrilled to finally catch up on much-needed sleep.

That is, until I heard the phone chime at 7:15am - when a friend who had been learning ashtanga from me texted me to let me know he'd just done a self-practice (he'd been scolded earlier in the week for not practicing between lessons).

I wrote back and asked him to stop sending early-morning text messages.

A week later, I had another opportunity to sleep in. The mind and body were in a state of deep, dreamless sleep.

That is, until I heard the phone chime, letting me know I had a new text message.

It was the same fellow, letting me know he'd practiced again. At 7am

Again, he'd awakened me on the only day I could sleep in.

Again, he'd sent me information I did not request.

I asked him what part of "Plz no txts b4 9am!!!" he didn't understand.

"But you've written e-mails to me at 5am - I checked."

Um, yes, - on a day when I teach yoga at 6am. NOT on a day off.

And I asked you, nicely, not to text early in the morning!

The mind was so incensed, the fingers could not reply.

And there have been no lessons since.

* * *

Lest you think this is just me, my friend J - who keeps similar hours and also uses his phone as a backup alarm - has had the exact same thing happen to him, again and again.

Only his friends are a lot younger.

They text him from bars, at 3am.

They send him funny pictures.

And they're certainly not texting him about yoga.

* * *

I propose we return to the rules that applied during the days of the rotary-dial landline telephones.

In those days, there were two phones in the house. One was affixed to the kitchen wall and the other was on your mother's nightstand - and you couldn't turn down the ringer on either one.

In those days, people simply didn't call between 9pm and 9am, because they knew it would disturb the peace.

They knew it was impolite and uncouth to call too early or too late.

And when someone did call between 9pm and 9am, it meant there was a real emergency.

Not that someone had finally done their ashtanga practice.

So please! No more texts (or calls) between 9pm and 9am.