what’s behind the mask


Last night, after months of delays, and in the aftermath of a snowpocalypse of historic proportions, I tried out a continuous positive airway pressure machine, or CPAP. Some of my best friends swore their praises and curses of the machine, which either sung them into a device-assisted date with sandman, or made them to claw at their faces and sleep unadorned.

I didn’t claw. As uncomfortable as this looks, I had a much better night’s sleep than the last time I was so nocturnally wired. Because this time I was masked. Thanks to this Darth Vader-like apparatus I breathed in not only positive air pressure but clean and more or less allergen-free air, with the added benefit of a humidifier. The sleep center had moved to a new facility just weeks before, and the mattress – which turned out to be simply a big cushion on top of the standard hospital-issue slab – was more comfortable by far than the hospital sleep lab. I did miss the Soylent Green-flavored relaxation videos piped into the hospital sleep lab, replaced this time with the Charlie Brown Christmas special and a news report on adopted children finding their birth parents. But the bedroom was decked with artwork that reminded me of the big sleep of Edward G. Robinson.
when it's sleepytime down south
I woke wanting more sleep, but feeling like I actually slept.
that's me!
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