Sleep Number bed: When did people go soft?

So … you’ve gone soft. Or you’re not getting enough sleep. There are reasons for that. Lo and behold: I have some suggestions for you … the first of which is stop being such a wimp.


We went soft long ago. A long, long time ago.

I can’t put my finger on where, exactly. It’s not possible to pinpoint any specific moment for the event. The best I can figure, it happened at some time in the 1950s with modern conveniences and blossomed from there. The amenities grew, slowly and methodically, and then the 90s really kicked things into gear and softness took off and began growing exponentially. I’ll chalk up a big chunk of the reason people went soft to the massive leaps and bounds of digital technology. That’s as good a place as any.

Understand, it wasn’t the technology in and of itself that caused people to go soft … but our ever-growing reliance on that technology.

And no one you know is immune to it. Not even me. Let me give you an example:

… I used to be a walking encyclopedia of information. That went out the window when I got a cell phone.

Before cell phones (yeah, I know … they’re called “mobile” phones … get off me) I used to be a walking encyclopedia of information when it came to names, numbers, address and personal information such as birthdays and anniversaries. That went out the window when I finally got one. (Side Note: I fought a massive battle in an effort to prevent myself from ever getting a cell phone. That confrontation lasted a good year; yes, I eventually lost the battle.) Now? I have but a dearth of the know-it-all-ness I once had. Ask me someone’s phone number and I’ll probably have to look it up. When a birthday comes up in casual conversation, there’s a 1 in 10 chance I’ll know the date. Address? Yeah, right … good luck. Today? Virtually everything is in my phone, conveniently accessible via touch pad and easily forgotten. All that information was once comfortably tucked away in the recesses of my mind. But now? I no longer need to remember it.

So, on that front, I’ve gone soft.

But … I’m proud to admit there are many areas where I’ve drawn a line in the sand where technology is concerned. Utilization of them will ultimately doom me into becoming soft before my time … and I simply won’t stand for it. I’m completely (some will say obstinately) content not only with my old fogey-ness (call it what you will) but with my effortless ability to swing a cane above my head threateningly while shouting at those damned kids to keep off my lawn.

Which brings me to the heart of this post, a theme I touch on often: The Decline Of Western Civilization.

The culprit this time? The Sleep Number bed, an instrument of technology created to lull people into a false sense of calm when what it’s really there to do is extract you from your nest egg.

… too many people want instant gratification. In everything. Quick meals, rapid responses, easy access. No one is content to hold tight for anything any more.

You see, too many people want instant gratification. In everything. Quick meals, rapid responses, easy access. No one is content to hold tight for anything any more. They’re fooled into thinking there is a need to know or to have — and right now — when there isn’t. No wonder most folks can’t take time to read a book or even sit through a television commercial without getting antsy. MP3 adaptations of novels and DVR recordings of our favorite shows are the norm. People have conditioned themselves into the falsehood their lives are better when they can “get it and just go” or when it’s made easier out of convenience. They don’t take the time to brew their own coffee (Keurig), vacuum their own houses (Roomba) or do anything they know they should do themselves. Someone else can do it. Someone else can do it better. It’s easier to pay someone to do it than do it yourself.

When did this cavalcade of entitled slackers begin parading through the streets? Oh, that’s right. In the 1950s … and during the explosion of the 1990s.

Of late? Gratification is all about sleep. And let me tell you, there’s a bevy of commercials and ads and more about acquiring a better night’s sleep. One of the most annoying of which is the Sleep Number Bed commercials.

You don’t get a good night’s sleep? Here are a few thoughts … and I’ll start off with a novel one, a common sense one: Go to bed tired.

Listen: You don’t need a Sleep Number bed. And you certainly don’t need to know what your freakin’ sleep number is.

“He’s a softy. You’re the rock.” Come on. You don’t need a bed to do that for you. Figure it out for yourself. Work some sort of deal that will accommodate you both if you sleep together. Spending $1,900 on a bed isn’t a solution — that’s putting you in hock, not getting you a better night’s slumber. You’re going to sleep eventually anyway (especially if you follow a few simple rules detailed below) whether or not you spend a boatload of moolah. So … why shell out the dough?

You don’t get a good night’s sleep? Here are a few thoughts. And I’ll start off with a novel one, a common sense one:

Go to bed tired. If you’re not tired you’re not going to sleep. Simple as that. What’s the point trying to doze off if you’re not ready for slumber?

Are you exercising before bed? Even if it’s hours before you turn in, you need to stop it. No good comes from exercising at night. Exercise gets the heart pumping and the mind active and the adrenaline flowing. Your mind going a mile a minute? Adrenaline coursing through your veins? Guess what? Neither are conducive to sleep.

Are you worrying about stuff when you go to bed? Stop that, too. Let me ask you something: Worrying about crap — how’s that working out for you at night-night time? Is it solving the problems, worrying yourself into a dither while staring at the ceiling trying to figure stuff out? You making inroads that way? No … I didn’t think so. It’s keeping you up at night, that’s what it’s doing. Stop it already.

There’s a reason you’re not getting a good night’s sleep. You hear a noise or a drip or a scratch? Don’t lie there wondering what it is. Drag your ass out of bed and find out. *yeesh* Stop being so lazy. If you don’t it’s going to roll around in your mind nine ways to Sunday and — yep, you got it — you’re not getting to sleep.

Worrying about crap — how’s that working out for you at night-night time? It’s keeping you up at night, that’s what it’s doing. Stop it already.

Partner snoring? Poke him/her with a stick. Give him/her a taste of their own medicine. Turnabout is fair play.

What … you’re bored? “I might as well go to bed … I’m bored.” Here’s a solution: Get your carcass up and clean out that box or drawer overflowing with junk. Every house has got one. You might as well go to bed feeling like you accomplished something rather than thinking “You know … I really should clean out that drawer overflowing with junk.”

Pillow bugging you? Get a different pillow. Buy a new pillow. Trust me on this one: Purchasing a new pillow is infinitely less expensive than purchasing a Sleep Number bed for thousands of dollars you don’t have.

Insomnia keeping you up? News Flash: Everyone experiences it on occasion. Some have chronic conditions requiring medical consultation but that’s a whole different ball of wax. The occasional bout of insomnia is nothing more than an annoyance. Yes … it’s an annoyance that can affect your work and attitude and more, but it’s going to happen to you sooner or later. You have insomnia? Get the hell out of bed and stop laying there bemoaning the fact you have insomnia. Want to get rid of it? Sit up straight and listen to music. Hand write a letter? (Remember what that is?) Is your insomnia caused by something you ate? Well … that’s your own damned fault. You should know better. With a little luck, your better judgment will kick in next time you over-indulge or when you eat something you know you shouldn’t. (Probably not. But it’s a nice thought … isn’t it? Old habits, hard to break.)

My point is this: There’s one hundred three different things (probably a few more) you can do to get to sleep. Understand life is often full of road blocks and detours, some of which will prevent you from getting sleep. Things will come up to prevent you from a restful slumber every once in a while. Shelling out your hard-earned cash isn’t a solution, however. Stop fooling yourself into a false mindset of “want” when you simply don’t need.

You’re not that soft. You could just be wimpy. Or your body just requires a good night’s sleep. And if you don’t get the sleep you need you’ll make a rash decision you’ll regret … like purchasing a Sleep Number bed.

One Comment on “Sleep Number bed: When did people go soft?

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