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Published January 14, 2020


How I met the New Year’s Eve challenge of staying awake

By John Toth / The Bulletin

As promised, here is the account of how I managed to celebrate New Year’s Eve rather than snoozing away on my couch with the built-in sleeping potion.

It was hard, and I cheated some because I made the mistake of watching a magician show on Netflix while lying on one of the living room couches. This couch has the same effect on me as 10 milligrams of Melatonin, so it didn’t take long before I was fighting off being pulled into dreamland.

It was New Year’s Eve, after all. The least I could do is ring in the New Year awake and celebrate with some sparkling water, or something like that.

I tried my hardest to keep my eyes open, but the couch got the best of me, and I was out for the count while the magician show was rolling on the screen. It was actually really interesting, but the sleeping-potion couch has greater powers.

I wrote earlier that falling asleep on New Year’s Eve is cheating, like jumping into a marathon right before the finish line and finishing first – or at least finishing. That’s the only way I would finish a marathon.

Well, I take it back.

I woke up in plenty of time to watch the clock wind down to midnight. To make sure that I would not return into dream world, we watched the last three episodes of “The Man in the High Castle” on Amazon Prime.

That did the trick. On that show, in an alternate universe, the Nazis and Japanese win WWII and divide the U.S.A amongst each other. But there is a resistance that keeps both of them busy. If you are going to watch this, start at the very beginning, Season 1, and try not to binge-watch it too late into the night.

It’s an amazing ending, and the last thing I would do is give it away here. I was hoping that the dystopian alt-history series would go on, but it ended with its fourth season.

I was wide awake as the last segment concluded at 12:15 a.m. on New Year’s Day. We missed midnight. That was about the time the resistance was trying to blow up the train. That’s all I am going to say, though. Happy viewing.

I didn’t even hear fireworks as the clock approached midnight. My overactive Yorkie appreciated that. One New Year’s Eve we went out to celebrate, and upon returning, found that one of our dogs that was hypersensitive to fireworks tore up my office trying to get out. Inside city limits we shouldn’t have this problem, and this time we didn’t.

Anyway, after the show the problem was going back to sleep, so I stayed up until 2 a.m. before finally getting some shut-eye. Not even the sleeping potion couch helped.

Lesson learned: Don’t watch a magic show no matter how interesting while lying on the sleeping potion couch, especially not on New Year’s Eve.

I’ll try not to cheat next New Year’s Eve. There is plenty of time left to practice.

(John looks forward to hearing from you on this subject. Send me a note at john.bulletin@gmail.com. You can even send an old-fashioned letter to: The Bulletin, P.O. Box 2426, Angleton, TX. 77516.)