Night / by Brian Beck

I can't help but stay up late.  My wife says I'm fortunate to be one of those people who can operate on very little sleep.  Maybe, but I don't think I have any special skill for it.  Rather, I think it's that I need the time to decompress more than I need the sleep.  It's a trade off I consciously make.  I'd like to get 8 hours of sleep and get all my stuff done AND have time to work on my little pet projects, but something's gotta give.  For the past few years, the night is when I would retire to my garage, put some Johnny Cash on quietly, and wrench. I've restored two cars in the hours between 9pm and midnight, or sometimes when I'm in the zone, 1 or 2am.  It's quiet and it gives me a much needed chance to reflect on my day, work out some of the mental kinks, and generally put things into perspective. I like to think I've had some of my best ideas in the quiet hours of the evening, when everyone else it seems is watching TV, shopping or reading Buzzfeed (or sleeping). 

I thought I might relinquish my territorial claim to the night once I recaptured the day. We'll see what happens after the kids are in school and I have a large expanse of the daytime to myself, but I don't think so. There's something special about it. If you can suffer your way through being tired, you can live a whole second lifetime in the night.  And it can be magical.