I hate waking to an alarm. I think I'd rather climb over a pile of burning tires than be startled out of sleep by an alarm clock.
Alarm: a sudden fear or distressing suspense caused by an awareness of danger; apprehension; fright.
An awareness of danger. It's called "being awake." While I sleep, perchance to dream I am recharging, restoring. My heart is pumping blood hither and yon, my lungs are drawing in oxygen to fuel the machine and each of my billions of little cells are doing whatever they do to continue this thing called Life. It's a grand time, sleep. The little death (not THAT little death, the other little death, the one that's less sticky.) But since we only need to spend 1/3 of our lives asleep, there's the matter of waking up.
My wake-up preference? Many. Smelling something good cooking in the kitchen. Being awoken by a bedmate in a variety of interesting and enticing ways. Letting my mind decide that the recharge/recycle process is done and having it slowly start the turbines, ease the throttle up confidently and lift me gently out of the sleeping world into the waking one like an airplane flying up through a thick cloud, suddenly emerging into the dawn's light. I hate, HATE being forced awake by, oh, an alarm clock for instance.
Yeah, I hate alarm clocks with a passion. Never liked the damned things, doubt I ever will. Raucous, shrill and vile in the extreme. And I'm not one of those folk who love the snooze bar, or who have to put the alarm across the room so as to make me get up and go over to it to turn it off, thereby assuring that I don't return to bed. No, the alarm goes off next to the bed, I reach over and hit the little button to stop it, my brain pumps the gas pedal a few times and turns the key in the ignition, and I listen to the grinding coughing noises my body makes until the engine turns over and starts to idle, albeit roughly, and then I'm up and at 'em. Slowly. And usually with clouds of blue smoke billowing. Not my preference to waking, but I have to do it five days a week. And I still hate alarms.
Years ago someone finally realised that not everyone likes to wake to that shrill "beep beep beep" electronic noise alarm and decided that with the miracle of microchips and digital storage they'd record natural sounds--brooks babbling, songbirds singing, oceans roaring and the like, and they'd program THAT into an alarm clock. I'd like to move that the man (or woman) who put that in motion be sainted. I immediately ponied up for one of these wonders of modern technology when I discovered them, brought it home and set it for "Ocean Waves."
It's still an alarm clock. It's soft, it's not nearly as brain=-splitting as that blinking, red-eyed demon "BEEPBEEPBEEP" but it's still an alarm. And I still hate it. But not as much. I much prefer it to the old noise, and those Baby Bens with the huge brass bells on top? I'd sooner be woken by a chain saw, or a doctor's voice saying "I'm sorry Mr. Irrelephant, the test is positive." And waking to music just doesn't do it for me. If I had the alarm set to music I'd just lie there with a soundtrack for my dreams, and trust me on this, the LAST thing my dreams need is the Universe assigning songs to them. Oooooh no, not this boy.
There is one time I love alarm clocks, and that's Friday mornings. I love waking on Friday mornings to the sound of a brook babbling. Brook? I turned off the Ocean setting because my brain began to confuse it with the white noise of the A/C unit and I stopped waking up after three years exposure to that certain five second loop, but I digress. Friday mornings I wake up and knowing the next day is Saturday and does not require a wakeup, I can stop up the waters and then TURN IT OFF for the weekend. That's got to be one of the top fifteen best feelings in the world.
Of course Sunday nights suck on ice because I have to turn the blasted thing back on for Monday morning, but that's just the cost of living, I guess.
So tell me--how do you wake up in the morning?