Interesting question. I have several friends who like to read before they go to sleep at night. It helps them relax.
I don’t get that at all, anymore than “The West Wing”‘s alcoholic Chief of Staff Leo McGarry understands how people can leave half a glass of wine on a restaurant table. (Come to think of it, he and I think an awful lot alike, oenophilially (and Scotchily, Jim Beamily, etc))
There is no earthly way I could read a book, and then go to sleep. My imagination reels too much, because when I read, my mind is completely engaged with the book. Say I’m watching a movie on Netflix–“The Avengers,” for example. I’ll watch the screen and listen to the dialogue. Then the cat will jump on the bed, and I’ll look away from the screen, or maybe end up half-concentrating on brushing him. My phone might bleat or burble, and I’ll check a Twitter or FB Message or text when it does–if I’m reading, I’ll only check the message during a chapter break. If I have to go grab a fresh beverage or a snack, half the time I won’t even pause the movie before I go; not so while I’m reading. The cat is on his own.
It is far easier for me to watch an action-intensive film like “The Avengers,” then roll over and go to sleep, than it is for me to sleep after putting down even an unexciting book. (note: I really like “The Avengers”)
One of the benefits I get from writing this book blog is that there is so much post-reading work to do. I like to write reviews as soon as I finish a book, so I get to work. I open Word, write my review, edit it, re-edit it, and re-re-edit it–I have a propensity to write annoyingly long reviews, ergo all the editing. Thus edited, I then copy-and-paste my review to Goodreads. Half the time, I’ll re-re-re-edit the thing on Goodreads. While at Goodreads, I’ll download the book cover. Then I come here to Books and Movies and Crap. I enter the title, add the cover image, and paste the updated review here. Then, I’ll copy the review from here, and upload it to any publisher’s site I need to, and post the review on Amazon.com (if the title is already published).
Once I’m done with all the post-reading work, I can usually put on some music and go to sleep. Without that buffer? Not a damn chance, even if I could drain all those half-glasses of wine people leave on restaurant tables.
(Hey, you gotta love that I worked that in at the end. 😉 )
I am COMPLETELY the guy that needs to read before I go to sleep! I find that it focuses my mind on one thing not the 37 things my increasingly pointer-like brain has going on normally. There are times when I don’t — just too tired, but I’d say 80% of my nights end up with 20-30 minutes in a book.
If I’m tired (or overly medicated), I will never fail to plop out during a movie. I’ve never fallen asleep in an optional book (e.g., in college, I used to wake up with my face in a Calculus book quite often (it didn’t soak in any better or worse than when I was awake 😉 ))
Also, 20 pts to Penny House for use of “increasingly pointer-like brain.”
I guess she’s contagious in more than her smiles.
I fall asleep during TV commercials. Two minutes of blah-blah that I’ve spent my life filtering out and I won’t be awake by the time we welcome our next guest. Praise Ghu for the “Sleep” button on the remote lest I awaken to perky morning shows. Shudder.
I fall asleep while reading unless the book is really exceptional. I save the really cool ones for wide-awake hours and read more formulaic ones at bedtime. I only read paperbacks or my Nook in bed to save myself from being thwomped by a hardcover. And I must commend the Nook folks for building a device that survives regularly plummeting to the floor even without a cover. And can stand having my faceprints cleared off it.
Depending on what combination of meds I’m on, there could be a risk of drool-assisted electrocution. 😉 I tend to read on my laptop–either on the Kindle app or Adobe Digital Editions–but I do like to have one decent book on the DorkFone 9000, in case I have to wait to have my tires rotated or something. So some days, I’ll read two whole books, and then there’s the Fone book (har!), which will take me a year of doctor appointments, waiting on late dates, slow periods at work, etc.
Oddly, I could never fall asleep with the TV on, because every channel ends up running infomercials. Those are dreadful. However, there are a couple movies I can put on and go to sleep with. One is “Judgment at Nuremberg,” and the other is about some American guy who runs a bar, and this beautiful woman comes in with her husband…I can’t think of the name. (haha)
The units are well-sealed and I’ve had no drool-related problems there (It doesn’t matter what I’m on, There Will Be Drool). I don’t read horror in bed, though; that would be worse than infomercials.