Last night I was given a polysomnogram to see if I had sleep apnea. I’ve never slept particularly well (insert Proustian episode here, with, in place of a madeleine, perhaps the frosted cupcakes I used to get at Reeves Bakery downtown when as a child I went shopping with my mother). The rooms in the Sleep Lab were equipped with the latest advances in sleep-inducing technology, including a peaceful television channel that reminded me of the scene in Soylent Green where Edward G. Robinson goes gently into that good night:
In the days leading up to the test I consulted with several friends who were veteran polysomnogramniacs, and their litany of inconveniences ranged from a telephone ringing down the hall to test patients in the next room reacting badly and vocally to the unfamiliar surroundings. The biggest worry I took from this was the paste used to affix sensors to the hair and scalp. I was assured by all that I’d find traces of this stuff in my naturally curly hair for days:
But owing to a recent change in formula, or the silken sheen of my naturally curly hair, or both, the gel washed off with no apparent residue. Still, it was an uncomfortable night, and the thick hospital walls meant I couldn’t get a cellphone signal and was unable to live tweet the proceedings. But it went alright, and sometimes this week I will reward myself with a cupcake – if not the remembered cupcake of my youth, something from the aptly named Baked and Wired.