Tuesday, April 20, 2010


The alarm rings once. Then twice. Then three times. On the third ring a sleep bloated hand lumbers to the bedside table, leaving a path of destruction on the bedside table with pencils and floss sticks flying in a desperate attempt to hit the snooze. The alarm turns off and a contented sigh rumbles from the bed. In 5 minutes time please return to sentence one and repeat.
Why did we even bother to call this little beeping menace an alarm? The inventor, ironically enough, was most certainly an aging 37 year old who loved his sleep and 9:30 mornings, which goes a great deal in explaining why according to Oxford American alarm means ' a warning of danger.' Perhaps Tony the Tiger is a little too terrifying to handle at 6 AM.
This conception is not the essence of snooze buttons however. I admit that I too have often looked at my alarm as a gong of doom, tolling out a last minute call to arms as the nefarious forces of the dawn, school, and homework march across the field of battle. What is amazing is that this alarm bell has an off switch.
Let us imagine for a moment that every alarm in the world has a snooze button. Forget about the fire, it can wait 5 minutes. Nah, the brownies will be fine. Tornado? No biggie, we can hold on a few minutes longer. Now of course this is an exaggeration, but surely this attitude has affected far more areas of our life than we would like to admit. The 'snooze affect', as I like to call it, is becoming far more popular in American culture, among teenagers and adults alike. Homework, or I suppose all types of work, is one of the most glaring examples, and the hallway of the high school half an hour before the first bell is strewn with dozens of students scribbling out essays and reading chapters they should have easily completed the night before. The snooze affect has seemed also to influence our disciplinary actions. It is disturbing to me to watch scores of youngsters, young enough to hide beneath the average chair when being chased, but certainly old enough to understand right, wrong, and the expectations of others. Still, when they cross the line, they are snoozed. They don't have to be perfect NOW, we'll fix it LATER. Apparently this is how the leading officials in our government were also raised. Let us forget about debt now, we need the money. Let us continue to fight a war where the alarm bells of irresponsibility have been tolling for years, and pull the troops out later. Lets keep funding massive gas companies now, cause we still have the gas, and when we run dry then, maybe then, we'll put our money into alternate sources of energy.
The time for then is over my fellow Americans. A society based on the then cannot prosper. We are doomed to be caught snoozing in the bed as our country crumbles around us.
I'm up, are you?

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