Useless When I’m Tired

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It’s true, I am useless when I’m tired.  The thing is, I’m a morning person.  Beth isn’t.  This means if I’m to spend any time with my wife, I need to stay up late.  I’ve tried to get her to get up early, but it’s impossible.  I sometimes fall asleep on the couch.  When I’m awoken, I’m super grumpy and manage only mutterings and mumblings on my way upstairs to bed.  That being established, here’s my story:

I had to attend a course in Portland this past weekend. 

On the plus side, I was able to get an Olivia-approved wardrobe into my duffel bag, and did not, to my knowledge, embarrass myself in that way. 

I did, however have to leave by 4:30 in the morning on Saturday, drive the 3 hours to Portland, and then sit through an 8 1/2 hr class.  I need more sleep than that.  I’m usually pretty early to rise, but I hadn’t been sleeping well since Wednesday.  I get my best sleep early in the night, and then when I inevitably wake up around 3 a.m., my mind starts working, and I doze fitfully for the remainder of the night.  This being said, I forced myself into bed just after 10 p.m. on Friday, and slept with one eye open, fearful of having mis-set my alarm, or that I’d be late, etc.

I jumped out of bed when the alarm went off, stealthily grabbed my things under cover of darkness (I had showered and shaved the night before, so as not to wake the children).  I made it to Portland without incident, and the class dragged, as Saturday classes always do. 

When class was out, I contacted my good buddy Steve, who was to join me for dinner.  He was busy, and was going to be for another hour or so, so I used that time to check into my hotel.  I had just done a google maps search of hotels near the college.  I thought for sure I had booked a place called Fireside Inn, but had in fact booked my room at the Ramada.  Picture the scene:  I boldly stride across the lobby of the Fireside and exclaim,

“Checking in – Whitehouse.”

Lady: “Last name?”

Me: “Whitehouse!”

Lady: “Could it be under another name?”

Me: “It’s the only one I’ve got.  Try W-H-I-T-E-H-O-U-S-E”

Lady: “Nope.  Do you have a confirmation number?”

Me: “Of course, it’s (pulling out my iphone -) 748573636”

Lady: “That’s not a number from our system.  Ours don’t start with 7.  Are you sure it’s here?”

Me: “Yeah, says here 155 Riverside.” 

Lady: “That’s the Ramada.  We’re Fireside Inn at 81 Riverside.  You’re two blocks away.” 

Me: “Thank you for your time.  Sorry for the confusion (sheepishly duck out of the lobby).”

Anyway, feeling pretty stupid about that, I make my way down the road to the Ramada.  Checking in, my rather Spartan room is the one just above the giant spotlight that highlights the sign.  So, I’ve got that going for me.  Also, there are three police cruisers flashing their blues in the street, so I’m feeling pretty good about the neighborhood I’ve chosen.  Upon further inspection, I discover that I’m directly across from the strip club in Portland.  I had forgotten that was even over there.  The exciting news was that they were featuring midget wrestling (joking – I would never), but the bad news is it isn’t until next weekend (still joking!).


Anyway, Steve calls and says he’s in the parking lot, and asks if I’m ready to go.  I was, and he suggested Buffalo Wild Wings.  There was some college ball on and we could do trivia.  While we were getting set-up, he asks me, “Which movie stars both Arnold Schwarzenegger and James Earl Jones.  I couldn’t think of a single movie.  I mean, I love James Earl Jones.  He was great in the Fugitive, Men In Black, JFK, the list goes on.  I guessed Running Man.  I was wrong.  Then it hit me – I had the wrong Jones.  I was thinking Tommy Lee.  The answer, of course, after a bit of head scratching, is Conan the Barbarian.  I had been watching it the night before on IFC.  So had Steve.  Stupid.  You can see my mistake:

jones boys

The Jones boys – clearly cousins.

After I lost trivia (surprise, surprise), Steve brought me back to my hotel, because I wasn’t any fun.  I did my best, and nearly stayed up until 8:30.  I called Beth to say goodnight, then crashed.  When I woke again, I was convinced I had been sleeping for DAYS.  It was 11 p.m.  I was in for a long night. 

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