February 17th, 2006


A very silly book ...

O.K., so I should have guessed that this was primarily a humor book when I picked it up (the cartoons within should have been a give-away, but then again, many of the "new physics" books also use cartoons for illustrating difficult points), but I was, frankly, expecting more of a "psychology/physiology" of napping. This had been "knocking around" since Fathers Day 1997 ... when it was gifted to me by my Father-in-Law ... at that point Daughter #1 was about two and a half years old, and I was past the point of desperately needing naps (she had been colicky, and none of us slept much her first six months), so it got put up on the headboard, on the dresser, on a bedroom bookcase, etc. A few weeks ago, Daughter #2 had uncovered it and was waving it at me, and I figured I'd bring it back to my office/library. Looking it over (small format, 96 pages, many illustrations), I figured it would be a quick read, so I tossed it in the "now reading" pile. It actually took me quite a bit longer than I had anticipated, as (no doubt due to the suggestions of the topic) I kept nodding off while trying to read it!

Anyway, as noted above, William A. Anthony's The Art of Napping is a very silly book. He claims to have taken six years to write this slim volume, which I guess must be a testament of some sort to his expertise with naps. I found his "technical jargon" (nap-thisology, nap-thatism, etc.) as insufferable as it was inescapable, but there were some informational nuggets that were of interest (for instance, the days following Daylight Savings switch-overs have a statistical increase or decrease in traffic accidents, 7% more than normal on the days following "losing" an hour and 7% less than normal on the days following "gaining" and hour).

The author of The Art of Napping is a psychology professor at Boston University, and I found myself deeply hoping that his various "Nap crusades" pressed in the book were presented with tounge firmly in cheek. Sure, I like napping as much as the next guy, but I'd hate to see Government Departments enforcing "nap breaks" on businesses nationwide! If you really feel a need to read up on napping, this is both still in print, and available via Amazon's new/used for a few bucks. Personally, I don't seek out humor books, so this is "not my thing", but (in the words of Johnny Carson) "It takes all types to fill the freeway", so you might find this to be to your liking.

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Wow ... media coverage and we didn't even KNOW ...

I'm slightly miffed at this, although we're getting a lot of calls from it ... it seems that one of our suburban "sister franchises" has been very active in hitting up local media for coverage, and hit it big with a several-minute segment on the local FOX station last night (transcript here) that reads great. I'm still trying to run down a copy of the piece so we can see the details, but it certainly is nothing to sniff at!

The thing that bugs me, though, is that one would think that somebody along the line would have said "Hmm ... maybe we should check some other Club Z! folks!" when preparing the segment. Like us, the only Club Z! franchise actually in the city. Not that I'm complaining, mind you ... doing more PR stuff like this is on my extensive "to do" list, but is way below more targeted vehicles than local TV ... and this probably helps us more than the gal (in the western suburbs) who set it up!

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