The Joy of Napping

The Joy of Napping

Tom Hodgkinson

There is little doubt that a nap is a natural part of our daily cycle, or ‘circadian rhythms.’ All our cycles are different. Yet, from schooldays on, the nap is frowned on as ineffective use of time….

I have heard of a technique for covert dozing, from a lowly office worker who had perfected the art of napping in the lavatory cubicle. He sat across the seat, leaned his head back on the toilet roll holder, the toilet roll making a comfy pillow, and jammed his feet up against the opposite wall. In this position, he said, he could doze happily for fifteen or twenty minutes.

It is a terrible state of affairs when we have become ashamed of napping. Shouldn’t all offices provide day beds for their workers? The day bed is one of the few positive legacies of the Victorian age….

In China recently, the widespread custom of hsiuhsi, or afternoon nap, has taken a bashing from Western-style work schedules. “Our businessmen are being told by people in your country that sleeping in the afternoon is a sign of laziness,” a traveler recently heard. “We are not lazy and do not wish to appear that way, so most people have given up hsiuhsi.”

Source: How to Be Idle

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