Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Go The @#$% To Sleep

Dylan called only minutes after receiving the text.

"OK, first of all my fishing stories aren't boring, and second of all; why are you awake at 12:45 a.m.?"

I sighed and tossed my ponytail back over my shoulder.  "Insomnia,"  I groaned.  "I haven't slept for shit in three nights.  Why are you up?"

"We just got back from a call."  he said, stifling a yawn.

"Ooh!"  I squealed, sitting upright on the couch "Something exciting?  A house fire?  Family of orphans trapped under a bus?  Hostage situation?"

"If you find water damage from a faulty smoke alarm to be exciting then yes. . .yes it was."  Dylan replied.  "Trust me, Jen; my job is a lot less 'Rescue 911' and a lot more 'Reno 911'.  C'mon, try to get some sleep."

"Pfft! Sleep is for the weak."  I snorted contemptuously, wrapping my Snuggi tightly around myself.*

*Yes, I own a Snuggi. . .OK, I own two. . .shut up.

"No,"  Dylan continued patiently "sleep is for normal, functioning human beings who would like to be able to get through the day without paralyzing hallucinations and homicidal thoughts."

"Yes, well," I countered, tapping absently at my laptop "I think we've established that I am neither normal, nor a functional adult.  Let's face it, sleep is nothing more than lying motionless in week-old laundry for six to eight hours.  That's a total waste of quality TV viewing and web-surfing time."

Dylan chuckled.   "I can hear you clicking away over there.  So, either you're actively transcribing this conversation for your blog or you're surfing the 'net for eCards about Jeremy Renner.  Which is it?"

"Neither!"  I cried indignantly.*

*And by 'neither' I of course mean 'both'.

"Actually,"  I continued, "I was looking at this email Holly forwarded to me the other day.  It's like a goddamned Rubik's Cube: I can't figure it out but also can't seem to stop playing with it."

I listened to the sound of Dylan's locker slamming as he stored his coat and boots.  "Well, it's evident that I'm not getting any sleep tonight either, so you might as well  forward it to me."   

I grinned happily and forwarded the email to Dylan's phone. This was a missive my sister Holly had forwarded to me at the Farmer's Market last weekend as we went trawling for fresh produce and scented candles.  Apparently, it was an email that had been mysteriously sent to a male coworker of hers and I haven't seen such awkward translation since the interview portion of the Miss Universe pageant.  I submit the mystery email to you in its entirety:


            Good evening! I'm Aaliyah Sims and I'm searching for plait man to have free-hearted nexus for permanent time and maybe getting affianced. Well here is what I can to let you know about me: unsophisticated mistress.
            You are probably curious what do I look? I¹m lofty blonde with smooth hair, medium chest rate, slab sided body type and svelte legs, something else that interesting you about me, you can ask me at the date. I going to choose nice and upright macho. If you are dreaming for free-hearted relations and you are romantic, compose me a message here, who knows?
                     May be you are my pair. Best regards! Mary

Dylan was silent for a moment.  "Wait. . .is her name Aaliyah or Mary?"

"I don't know,"  I shrugged, knocking my Snuggi to the floor.  "Maybe she forgot her new 'American' name; this email has Ukrainian Mail Order Bride written aaaaaaalllll over it."

"Well, you have to admire her concerted effort."  Dylan countered affably, "Although I find it shocking that a woman with a medium chest rate and slab-sided body has trouble  finding a fella."

I laughed.  "Well, it's not easy to find a plait man in this day and age.  And if you want a free-hearted nexus with someone nice and upright macho then you really need to step up your game."

"That's true."  Dylan intoned seriously, "Especially if it is your dream to become affianced.  Seriously, do they NOT have Google Translate in the Eastern Bloc countries?"

I laughed.  "This has Babelfish written all over it.  That site spews out more garbage than a bulimic with giardia."

"And thanks to that visual I won't be eating this evening."  Dylan drawled with disgust.*

*Oh, man up, Nancy Boy!

I stretched and retrieved my Snuggi from the floor.  "Well,  I'll let you get some sleep.  I'm going to play some Mario Kart until there's something on TV besides infomercials and porn."

"Won't it wake up the boys?"  Dylan asked.

"They're spending the night with Grandpa and Grandma tonight."  I said, picking up the Wii remote.  "That's why I can't sleep. . .I can never sleep when they're not here.  It's like my whole dynamic is. . .off."

Dylan thought for a moment.  "But you sleep fine when I'm there.  And I'm never there at night when the boys are home."

"No,"  I agreed, "and it's going to stay that way.  The short people don't need that whole level of weirdness." 

"I agree,"  he replied "and you know I feel the same way.  So, if you don't sleep when they aren't home, why can you when I'm there?"

"I don't know."  I pondered for a moment, choosing my words.  "I guess. . .I guess. . .it seems safer.  Like I can let my guard down a little.   I don't even sleep all that well when the boys ARE home to be honest.  It's like. . .I'm it.  I'm the only line of defense in case of an emergency.  There's this little part of me; that Mother Lion thing that always keeps one eye open to defend her cubs and that lioness voice keeps whispering in my ear to stay alert, to always be on the lookout for danger."

"And having me there drowns out the voice?"  Dylan queried with mild confusion.

I paused.  "Well. . .yeah. . .it does.  I feel like someone else has my back.  Like, in case there's a fire, or a break-in, or my drunk neighbor starts singing Adele outside of my window at 3:00 a.m. there's someone there to defend us."

He chuckled softly.  "So, basically, I'm just your human shield?"

"Pretty much."  I agreed.  "C'mon, someone's gotta lean into the strike zone and take one for the team."

"Duly noted."  Dylan replied sagely.  "Well, the only thing I'm going to lean into is the shower.  I smell like a steaming cafeteria tray full of ass."  

"Lovely."  I drawled.  "Thanks for keeping me momentarily entertained.  Now, if you'll excuse me I have a hot date with Luigi and Princess Peach."  We said our goodbyes, and I hung up the phone, settling in for a glorious five hours of uninterrupted wakefulness, pausing just long enough to google the results of the sleep deprivation studies they did on American G.I.'s in the 1950's.  Hallucinations, hysteria, and binge-eating. . .hmmm, pretty much a typical day at Casa de Jen, so I should be good to go.  Huzzah.

An hour later I had abandoned Mario Kart for a rerun of "Roseanne" when I heard a light tapping at the door.  Knowing full well that the only visitors dropping by at 2:00 a.m. would either be wielding a sawed-off shotgun or a copy of the Book of Mormon,  I armed myself with the first available weapon at hand and peered through the side window.  Seconds later I flung open the door to see Dylan standing on the porch in his sweatpants and a Portland Fire Department T-shirt; hair still damp from the shower.  He grinned in amusement at the blunt-ended child safety scissors in my upraised hand.

"Were you planning to go all Miley Cyrus stalker on me?"  he asked, while slowly peeling the scissors from my grasp.

"Whaa. . .?  What are you DOING here?"  I gaped incredulously.  Dylan gently took my shoulders and turned me around, guiding me back into the apartment and then locking the door behind him.  He kicked off his shoes as he led me down the hall, turning off the lights and TV on his way.

"Sleep."  he said, softly but firmly as we reached the bedroom.  "You need to sleep."

"B-but. . .but. . ."  I stammered as he pulled down the blankets and carefully sat me down on the bed.  "But aren't you on call tonight?"

"I was."  he replied  "And now I'm not.  There's only about five hours left on my shift anyway and you need me here."  I continued to stare at him in amazement as he lay me down and tucked the blankets around me snugly.  Turning off the lamp, he lay down on top of the covers and wrapped one arm around me tightly, resting his head against mine.

"Are you going to get in trouble for this?"  I worried, fiddling with his sleeve.  I felt him smile against the back of my head.

"Nope."  he replied "It's the Portland Fire and Rescue motto: 'Always Ready, Always There'.  I got a report that a citizen needed a human shield and I would be shirking my duties if I didn't step up."

I smiled and let my eyes drift shut as I snuggled closer to him.  "Thanks, but I warn you. . .I probably still won't be able to sleep.  My insomnia is pretty badass."

"I'll keep my expectations low."  he murmured, pressing a kiss into my hair.  That's the last thing I remember before falling into the best sleep I'd had in days.




Leauxra said...

Sorry, all I can say is, "Awwwwww.". That story left me with all kinds of warm fuzzies.

Tiffany said...

Awesome. I'm so jealous.

Jen said...

LEAUXRA- He is pretty AWWWWW-inspiring, that's for sure. :)

TIFFANY - There are a few good ones still out there...who knew?

Erica Burns said...

awww :) he seems pretty great to do that

Dean said...

"See, Azra? There are still heroes in the universe."


Jen said...

ERICA - I'm still not used to a guy treating me nicely...its a little surreal.

DEAN - Indeed there are, my good man. Indeed there are.

HeatherRose said...

You're going to have to transition from writing a snarky, rage-induced blog to romance novels. I sense a Rita Award in your future...

Monika said...

Awwww...that is SO sweet! Warm fuzzies all around! <3

BTW, that email is priceless.

Frances Gronlier said...

**le sigh**

Jennifer Clark said...

I never sleep well when my man is gone. The dark seems darker, creaking noises freak me out, I worry about home invasions here in Mayberry, etc.

Very sweet of Dylan. I'm glad it worked. Sleep is pretty important, Jen.

Jen said...

HEATHER - Oh shit...if I ever get THAT cheesy, please punch me in the face.

MONIKA - I am still googling words from that email and do you know what? It STILL doesn't make any fucking sense.

FRANCES - He's always DOING things like that! It kinda freaks me out...I still don't trust "nice". No one's ever been nice to me without some pretty scary shit coming right after.

JENNIFER - My doc wants to put me on Ambien or Lunesta or something but I keep hearing stories about people who binge eat, shoplift, or watch 'Jersey Shore' while on those meds and oh HELL no!

Jennifer Clark said...

It doesn't have to be that complicated, Jen Try Benedryl. Non-habit forming, safe as mother's milk. When that fails, I reach for the meletonin. 2 of those babies and I sleep like a hibernating woodchuck. In a good way.

Anonymous said...

That email was obviously written by an alien looking to harvest your sister's co-worker's organs. Beware.

As to the Dylan part . . . I second the Awww, but totally saw that coming from a mile away. I always sleep better when I know the hubs is there as well. And he travels. A lot. But yeah, I get it. Gotta protect the baby cubs at all times. Even with safety scissors. :)

Valerie said...

I used to own a skull print snuggie. It was my best friend. Until my jerk dog destroyed it in a fit of jealous rage. It never fit her properly.

Now I'm cold all the time. I envy your warmth...



Jen said...

MISTY - You should see me cut a bitch with washable markers, yo.

VALERIE - Sometimes I like to "double Snuggi" and put one in front and one in back. HOLLA!

Andrea said...

Grabbing pom poms to cheer for that story!

Leslie said...

One more Awwwww and more warm fuzziness here. I totally approve of him! (aren't you relieved to have the approval of some total stranger? Whew!). He's a good one. Enjoy it!

Jen said...

ANDREA- I was shocked, no lie. I've never EVER have a man be kind to me without MAJOR strings attached...I'm still not sure how to process it.

LESLIE- Strangers are the most honest because they have nothing to lose. Your opinion means everything.

Brett Minor said...

It sounds like he's a great guy.

I keep the same rules in my house. Red does not stay if Kirsten is home.

No worries, no explanations.

Mandy said...

He does sound pretty awesome, Jen. I has the fuzzies too. :)

Kelly said...

Well played, Dylan. Well played. I have yet to compute the points scored from this latest example of sweet (honestly, I might have had to supress both an "aww" and an "urp"... where does he come up with this perfection, does he teach, and can we set up some sort of boot camp for husbands?) but I'm pretty sure he's solidly in the "He's A Keeper" category.

And seriously, we need to connect our Wii systems - Mario Kart challenge?

Jen said...

BRETT - Yeah, Dylan and I are both pretty Old School about no PDA in front of the short people. They just know that he's Mommy's "friend".

MANDY - Fuzzies for everyone! Huzzah!

KELLY - You can link game systems? Yeah, I'm terribly tech-savvy as you can tell. You'll need to talk me through it.

Anonymous said...

This reads like some of my favorite Castle fan fics (yes, I actually wrote that. Wow.)

He's a keeper for sure.

Bobbie of PDX said...

WOW. Really? WOW. Men like this exist in Portland?! I think I need to set something aflame asap.

Erica Burns said...

He sounds like a guy I'd be rooting for in a romance book... like the one I just finished...
With that said I own a Rainbow Brite snuggie.. My husband shakes his head everytime I get it out b/c I get cold easily.. but it's totally okay when HE wants to use it. lol

Jen said...

JEN W - Yeah, except I can't imagine Beckett coming after Castle with safety scissors...I can, however, see it being the other way around!

BOBBIE - Just make sure you set a fire near the PSU campus. And if your firefighter on call has Dylan McDermott's face and Jeremy Renner's arms, tell him Jen says hi. :)

ERICA - I have an OSU Snuggi ("Go, Beavs!") and a hot pink one. They're rad.

Erica Burns said...

lol... your comment about Beckett with safety scissors.. is the funniest thing I've imagined in a while... I agree Castle would totally do it though

tbunni said...

Kelly - that whole "boot camp for husbands" thing, my friends have been after my husband to start one for years. And we live just down the freeway from Jen & Dylan... If the economy doesn't pick up soon, might be a good source of income - wives/girlfriends would absolutely pay!

Jen said...

TBUNNI - I think you're on to something. We could make millions...MILLIONS, I TELL YOU!!!

Laura said...

Awww. He sounds wonderful. Though the friend we have in common said... oh no way he let her sleep... that was totally a booty call. and no I am not jaded. LOL

Jen said...

LAURA - Ha! That totally sounds like Jami! Believe it or not, he was a perfect gentleman and let me sleep through the night. . .the next morning, however. . . ;)