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All Nighter

June 21, 2012

Today is still yesterday and tomorrow didn’t happen yet. It’s true. See, I got to work about 24 hours ago. I’ve been up all night, working on a video presentation that my boss is going to give in a few hours.

There isn’t even enough time to burn a DVD, so we are going to screen the hour-long piece from a Quicktime file on a laptop hooked up to a television. That’s the idea, anyway. I am keeping myself ready for a last–minute catastrophe, as well as crossing my fingers that nothing will go wrong. Though this seems like the kind of situation where technical meltdowns are most likely to occur.

I slept about an hour waiting for something to export, curled up on the carpet with a down vest as a pillow and a towel as a blanket. It sounds a lot more depressing than it is: the towel was clean, the down vest soft and it was actually quite comfortable.

It’s been about a week and a half of this. Not staying up all night, but hitting it pretty hard with a very real deadline in sight. I actually prefer it this way. When I get over the lack of sleep, missing my girlfriend, a bed and a shower, it’s great to be working toward something. Racing the finish again, time moves much faster this way.

It’s been quite some time since I’ve had a deadline as intense as this; college comes to mind, but even in those four years I probably only pulled about a dozen all-nighters. Almost all of them could have been avoided with a little bit of time management. But alas—I usually wait until the last minute.

Not surprisingly, there is so much more time in the day when you cut out sleep. And depending on what you are doing, you can maintain a fairly high level of productivity. Thankfully, I have laid out my tasks (with the exception of writing this column) in order of descending brain activity as it gets later/earlier. Now I’m blurring people’s names and depending on basic muscle memory.

Good thing, too, because at this point my eyes are doing that thing where it feels really great to close them. My posture is slumping and slumping deeper into this chair. It seems like maybe I should just doze for a second...

I used to be able to bounce right back from these things. Now, alas, I fear I may sleep through the next day or so. Maybe into next week. Actually, maybe today is now yesterday. The end of this column will fulfill the last of my responsibilities for the day—and it’s coming up soon. I see it down there at the bottom of the page.

Oh, I just remembered... I have dinner plans tonight so I really shouldn’t sleep until next week. Later today, I will have slept for a few hours so I guess it’ll be tomorrow by then.