How To Sleep Like a Pro


People keep telling me, "You need help!" I am a big Do-It-Yourself-er, so I browsed Amazon.com, looking for the perfect self-help book.


Did you know that there are, at any given moment, approximately 1,000,000 self-help books in print? Besides the classics like "Think and Grow Rich" and "The Power of Positive Thinking" there are now specialty niche books and tapes, thank goodness. I mean, they can't all say the same thing in the same way, without confusing the Copyright Office no end. I noticed that least one person got published by going against the grain of the common wisdom. -- At least, that was the idea behind, "Be a Contrarian; Do It All Wrong," which now lists at #1,000,001 on Amazon.com. Be sure to buy the first edition hardcover soon, if only as a collectors item, since its dust jacket blurb says that it is going out of print immediately.


Thanks to a recommendation from the Robert Benchley Society web site, I sent away for the Oscar-winning self-help video, "How To Sleep." I figure, if it won an Oscar, then the film must have put a lot of people to sleep, right? It seems that in the 1930s, a sleepy columnist created a how-to film years before Dr. Phil and Tony Robbins thunk up their now-famous video series, "You Can Sleep -- Now! -- Ask Me How!"


What a godsend Mr. Benchley's film is! I've become quite an expert, thanks to that short black-and-white film. I had been doing it all wrong. I think the key was in my pajamas. Removing that key from my pajamas made all the difference. Thanks, Mr. Benchley!


I admit those self-help books and tapes are addictive. Once I conquered those two above items, I sent away for more, to get a new perspective (a new lie?) on the subject. Below are the books and tapes I have bought thanks to recommendations from the web site of Bed Wetters Weekly:


 Zig Ziglar's "Sleep With Enthusiasm" caused me to change my mattress -- twice!


Stephen Covey's best-selling "The Seven Pillars of Rest" motivated me to install pillars in my bedroom. (It was only much, much later that I found the publisher's errata sheet, which said the word should have read, "pillows.")


Dr. Wayne Dyer's now-classic video, "You Won't Sleep Until You Help Another Person Nod Off" was insightful, especially the part where the negotiations turn violent.


 Lou Holtz, former head coach of Notre Dame, put out "Nap to Win," describing how special teams rest their eyes during the national anthem.


Mary Lou Retton's new DVD "Tippy-Toe Nappy-Bye Time" is oriented toward young girls who are too thin and too light to stay down on a bed.


Satisfaction at last! I can sleep with the best of them.


But I might have gone too far. I now have trouble waking up.