stories

How to Sleep - Chapter (all)

When you sleep, at first, you must stand with your back to the side of a bed, bend your knees slowly and put your buttocks on the bed. At such times, the imaginary line drawn vertically from the end of the buttocks that is the coccyx must cross a point on the bed at least 25 cm away from the edge. If possible, you should sit down deeply enough so that not only your buttocks but also some portion of the rear side of your thighs will rest on the bed. Due to the fact that ther e usually is sleeping equipment such as a mattress, a sheet and a blanket on the bed, generally unfixed (except for the case when two persons try to lie down simultaneously from both sides of a bed), the action of putting one's buttocks on the edge of a bed makes the upper half of the individual's body extremely unstable. Especially seeing as a mattress is a product whose value is argued or decided upon almost entirely by its elasticity, it is easily compressed by the weight of the upper half of the indiv idual's body, inducing a sudden sinking of its surface, and, moreover, augmenting the already sharp inclination of slippery cloth products such as a sheet or a blanket.
This inclination, augmented at the edge of the bed, may throw the person down to the floor, the strength of the impact the human body receiving from the fall proportional to the height of the bed. Namely, if the height of the bed is less than 30 cm above the floor, though there are differences among individuals, the impact is attenuated by the elasticity of the buttocks themselves, injury to the human body can usually be avoided. If the height of the bed is approximately 50 cm, then bilateral ischii lying at the lowermost part of the pelvis receive a mild impact; and if you fall from the height of 1 m, the impact upon the coccyx and the pubic symphysis is transferred to the spine and you experience some difficulties in standing and walking for several minutes. If the height of the bed is 2 m, the pelvis is seriously injured: the impact travels along the spinal cord and reaches the brain,bringing temporary anopsia, dyspnea, dysarthria, or deafness. Likewise, the seriousness of the injury to the human body grows larger in proportion to the height of the bed, and if it is higher than 15 m, a fall from it almost certainly results in death.
As mentioned before, when you sit down at the edge of a bed, you must be mindful to bend your knees slowly. Since the bed or the mattress is sleeping furniture or equipment which of necessity has elasticity and usually contain coils or springs, it is the action of putting down the upper half of your body forcefully that causes the springs, whose major purpose is the absorption of the energy of the impact, to release their second characteristic, i.e. recoiling, popping, as it were, the human body up on the bed, and exposing it to danger. As you put your buttocks down more@forcefully, the value p in the equation p=kx increases, where k is a constant and p is proportional to x, resulting in more bending. Because the energy retained by this bending is given by the equation E=1/2kx^2=1/2px, in rough calculation, assuming that the energy of recoiling when you sit down in normal action pops the human body up 20 cm, when you put your buttocks down three times faster, the bed will pop the human body up 60 cm. Since the velocity doubles during the fall, which indicates six times more energy, the bed pops it up 1 m 20 cm; in the third instance, 2 m 40 cm; and the forth instance, to a height of 4 m 80 cm. This will cause the body to crash against the ceiling, breaking the lighting fixtures, bringing out a more vigorous fall to the floor, causing the destruction of materials forming the floor,depression in the floor by the human body, and so on and so forth.
Once you have rested your buttocks on the edge of a bed uneventfully, then, at first you must slowly raise one of your legs that is lying near the foot end of the bed. To raise a leg, in the first instance, you need to put force into the femoral portion and the knee in the ratio of eight to two; then, leaning the upper half of your body slightly in the opposite direction to the leg almost automa tically raise it. After the leg has risen to the angle of 45 degrees, then contrarily putting a force into the femoral portion and the knee in the ratio of two to eight, you must begin to stretch your leg. At the same time (this is, as it were, an skillful and important point of this part), you must start to turn around your leg-in-the-stretching-process slowly in the direction to the foot end of the bed. Meanwhile, the upper half of your body has already started to turn to the foot end involuntarily, and when this upper part turns 45 degrees, the leg must be kept straight, and at the same time, must have descended onto the bed, which is a difficult task requiring considerable training. However, this is by no means a Herculean task, nor is it impossible.
To put another leg on the bed is relatively easier. Because one leg is already on the bed, the crotch of the human body or the thighs are open on an angle of about 90 degrees, which is an unnatural posture, causing a pain in the femoral muscles and the femoral portion that is to be put on the bed. As if it possessed a will of its own, the femoral portion already on the bed will begin to move by itself, sensing the approaching force. If you want to abet this movement, you only have to put the upper half of your body down on the bed supinely. If you lay yourself down so that your occiput lands on the pillow, successive motions will become easier.
You should carefully avoid such a motion as putting your legs down violently together and, at the same time, putting down the upper half of your body on the bed. The force exerted by the legs may bounce the mattress, cause your whole body to turn around and fall down from the other side of the bed, or in the case of a bed that is attached to the wall, produce various incidents such as a crash against the wall, destruction of the wall by the human body, or a breakthrough of the wall by the human body. It may be all right if you are in your own home, but if you are in the hotel or some other place, it will be interpreted as an intrusion into the next room and may lead to the police intervention.
Next, you must slip your legs and body between the sheet and the blanket to maintain your body temperature during sleep. You do not need the following motions if the blanket has already been pulled back at your feet or half-turned; and if you should lie down supinely on a blanket not yet pulled back, the following rather acrobatic motions will be required. First you draw your knees up while lying on your back, then you pull the ankles up to the buttocks, and by a peristaltic movement of the gluteal muscles, and simultaneously by a slight shift of the upper half of your body right and left, you move the lower half of your body to a place near the head of the bed. You must maintain this motion until your buttocks slide up virtually onto the pillow. This motion will bring the parietal portion, or top of your head, to the bottom, turning your head completely upside down, floating your back 30 to 40 cm above the bed, raising your abdomen in a half circle, drawing your head, buttocks and feet ever closer. During this motion, you must pay attention to the position of your arms, that is to say, the arms should be extended sideways and lying on the bed, supporting and keeping the balance of the unstable upper half of your body so that it does not fall to the right or to the left.
After slipping your legs up to the head of the bed, you lift the edge of the blanket that is by your toes and insert your legs gently beneath the blanket, toes first. Not until the ankles are in, the shins mostly in, and the upper half of your body achieves some stablity you should insert your hands beneath the blanket. These motions must be carried out with extreme gentility and care, especially in the case of the hands. They should not be inserted simply: it is essential to check the surface of the sheet with your palms. Also for the legs, it is desirable to stretch them slowly,feeling as broadly as possible the surroundings with your toes. Due to the fact that the bed is a piece of furniture left unused in the daytime, all sorts of dangerous things can stray into it, jump in it, or grow under the blanket or over the sheet, and the human body just going to sleep may get injured by these things on the odd occasion.
First of all, the most dangerous and common objects are needles, thumbtacks, pins, safety pins, nails, and so on. You must pay great care with these metallic products, which tend to stray into the bed on the very day when you clean, rearrange, or change the wallpaper of the room, since, in contrast to other things, they have pointed parts with an apparent intention to injure the human body and, what is worse, are small. Of these, needles have an evil tendency to break at the point after becoming stuck deeply in the human body and require most attention. Other things are also troublesome if they are rusted, the treatment of the wound requiring a longer period.
Other things which have sharp parts with an intention to injure the human body include arthropods such as bees, gnats, centipedes, scorpions, or reptiles such as rattlesnakes. However, since these creatures sometimes invade after you sleep, it is almost impossible to completely prevent their invasion.
In case of a home with children, the toys left after playing in the daytime have formidable dangerousness and destructivity. Even just one piece of block or toy can produce not a negligible effect if it strikes the vertebral bone directly. Among toys, you should pay special attention to: solid objects that have acute angles such as a trigonal block, a toy gun loaded with BBs, a battery-powered power shovel, etc. In a house where there are children who are interested in handicrafts such as plastic models, you must pay attention to various tools: a gimlet, scissors, a cutter, a power drill, and so on. Although essentially harmless to a human body, there are some things veryunsanitary if they are crushed by a human body. Mice breeding baby mice, cats breeding kittens, dogs kept in-house breeding puppies are examples. In addition, when you are keeping squirrels, hamsters, guinea pigs, rabbits or something in-house, you need special care. Sometimes they creep into your bed not for breeding but only to warm themselves. If you happen to crush these animals, they may bite you to avoid being killed, even if you are their keeper.
For extremely rare examples of objects found in a bed, one can list an alligator, a lion, a corpse of a human baby, a lower half of a woman's body, a head of a horse, a stick of dynamite or a time bomb. But these should be kept in mind only for reference.
After safely extending your extremities in the blanket, you must try to make a few seemingly meaningless motions in the process of entering the sleeping state. First is the yawn, which is usually performed in parallel to the action called stretching. This is said to be performed automatically by the body despite one's will, yet it can be induced at will by opening your mouth widely. To open your mouth, though there are differences among in dividuals, usually you pull your upper and lower jaws apart wide, its distance being 5 to 6 cm in an adult male. It can reach 7 or 8 cm by opening your mouth unnaturally wide; and according to the size of the entire mouth, 9 to 10 cm may be possible in a few cases; however, your jaw is generally dislocated if it exceeds 10 cm, and when it is beyond 20 cm, you should appreciate that your jaw has been detached from your face and fallen on the bed.
Stretching should be started immediately before the beginning of the yawning. First you stretch your arms behind your head; putting strength into the muscles of the chest, abdomen, and the legs, bend your body backward. It is impossible to explain to what extent you should exert your strength, however. If you put in too much strength, you may experience such an excruciating phenomenon as dislocation of the joint or a torn muscle.
Before or after the stretching or yawning (though it is regarded as a relatively unrefined act), most people perform a motion of scratching themselves, especially on the abdomen. The motion of scratching is usually concentrated only on the place which experiences an itchy sensation. However, this scratching before sleeping is not performed because there is an itchy place, but, without apparent reason, simply because getting undressed, you can easily scratch any part of the body, and since you know by experience that you can feel pleasure whenever you scratch, you are thus tempted to scratch.
When you scratch, first fasten the fingernails. Tightening the muscles around the root of the fingernails and curbing one's fingers like talons naturally advance the nails just slightly before the fingertips: when the fingernails of this state applied to the part to be scratched, only then it is called "fastening." In contrast to Felis or Panthera, who can retreat or extend the nails at will, it is impossible for a human to fasten one's fingernails without objects to scratch. The body parts most frequently scratched are, in order of frequency: the abdomen, flank, waist, thigh,chest, buttocks, back, and shoulders, but almost any part could be included. However, if one scratches between the toes or the region being thick with pubic hair, it is because there is true itchiness due to skin disease or vermin, so usually you don't have to scratch these parts.
You should scratch three or four times per part, and it is desirable to scratch the whole body evenly, without partiality. If you have a part itchier or more pleasant upon scratching than others, then you may scratch five or six times putting in a little more strength; however, if you scratch ten or twenty times, the act should be called "scraping" rather than scratching. If you scratch thirty or forty times, the superficial layer of the skin or the epidermis is injured, by fifty or sixty times the epidermis is broken and the nails cut into the dermis. If you scratch seventy or eighty times, the subcutaneous fatty layer will appear, by ninety or a hundred times the capillaries are broken and the blood begins to ooze. By two or three hundred times the torn skin will be scattered over the bed; by two or three thousand times the nails will cut into the muscles. If you scratch twenty or thirty thousand times, the fat will be dug out and the bed will be soaked in blood; by two or three hundred thousand times, the muscles will be tattered and the ribs will begin to appear.
The other method is, on the contrary, to think of extremely simple matters, some representative ideas known since long ago and in general practice. Among these, an effective method is to count the number of sheep jumping over the fence of a pasture. As for the pasture, you simply have to imagine a green plain. Detailed background is unnecessary. It gets too complicated with a mountain or a river, and a waterfall or an iceberg only makes it worse. You only need to imagine a plain around Australia. Even if you don't know the place, you need not to go to see it. The simplest image is a streak of fence lying in the middle of a view, parting the right from the left.
Then the sheep will appear, black or white as you like, but only the sheep of the same colour must be cast. You should never mix various colours together, or for a change, never cast a humpbacked or limping sheep. If such sheep should appear, you should try either to accept or neglect them, convincing yourself that they were normal sheep, calming yourself down to count the next sheep. For these sheep, the best direction of appearance is to enter simply from the right, jump over the fence in a step, then exit to the left without any greeting; and you should never let them make unnecessary performances such as forward double somersaults or backward taking-off and somersault with double twist over the fence. Ordinarily you can fall into a sleep by the time you have counted fifty or at most a hundred sheep which appear one after another. However, if you can not, you may count further on. But when you reach the state of half-sleep and half-wakefulness by counting many sheep, sometimes an animal quite different from a sheep may appear. It may be, say, a giraffe with a crooked neck or an elephant without a trunk; and when you encounter such a strange animal, it is quite important to regard it as a kind of sheep and to let it go at that. On occasion, a deformed elephant may staggeringly enter, hop but be unable to jump over the fence, stumble at its feet and fall down with a thud. Even in such instances you should reg ard it as having jumped over the fence uneventfully and should perish the thought from your mind.
In the case of the person going to sleep being a man, according to his physiological status, a naked woman may suddenly appear in place of a sheep. In that case also, you should regard her as a sheep and press on. If stimulated by her nudity you take off your clothes and run after her, you will achieve not sleep but only fatigue.
The woman may come up and stand by the bed. Of course, if you jump out of the bed and reach for her, she will run away. It is a woman's nature to run away at least once even if she likes you. You will run after her but never catch up. It is a woman's nature to keep running and keep you hanging forever. Since you are wide awake by this time, you should run after her exhaustively and get exhausted. While you climb a mountain, go across a valley, cross a desert or run through a metropolis in the night naked, you will be dead tired. When you get sleepy through fatigue, the woman or your partner usually begins to transform itself into something weird. Or so many women would appear that you cannot tell who's who. You may catch them one by one, but you may turn out with an old woman wrinkled with age, or a cyclops. Soon you will get irritated and begin to transform your body. On many occasions you wi ll become a huge monster and start to destroy your surroundings with a roar. If you become a monster, then in the end you will be killed by man, either burned, or fall from the rooftop of a building. In this way the monster will breathe its last breath and lose consciousness. By this time you, too, are already fast asleep, or truly dead.