Pillow Talk

There are many downsides to working away from home, most of which are tradeoffs against making good money, or indeed any money. You put up with them because it’s better than being unemployed and broke. If you’re really lucky, you’ll be paid well and enjoy the work. Occasionally, fortune smiles on you and provides you with a glimpse of what makes living worthwhile.

Isn’t that pretty?

The last couple of weeks have been hectic. I’ve had the usual work committments that take me away from home for extended periods, followed by the frantic activity of fulfilling social obligations of varying kinds, as well as finding time to do all those domestic chores that seem to pile up if you don’t keep a close eye on them. Yet with all this activity, until last week I hadn’t felt that I’d accomplished much for several months. Getting the new website started was a step in the right direction, but somehow nothing else was getting done. It’s been immensely frustrating, which has been coupled with occasional bouts of melancholy that seemed to strike without warning.

Now there’s nothing wrong with a good mope or a cry now and then, in fact, I think it’s probably quite healthy. Perhaps the doctors of 17th century Christendom were onto something with their lancets and the venting of bodily humours, which would be why one is said to vent one’s spleen. However, much as those selfsame doctors would occasionally go too far in their enthusiasm for enforced blood loss and induced vomiting, I was getting a bit concerned by these periods of sadness in that I thought I’d moved beyond that point in my grieving process over some recent personal events. Apparently not.

The last week has seen a remarkable turnaround, however. Some minor wins at work have helped with that area of my life. Some website related coding issues have also been resolved and so some additional content is well underway. I’ve also finally been able to spend a bit of time at home without being interrupted by social committments. I like being social, don’t get me wrong, but I also need some time to myself to recharge, veg out, do housework, and sleep. What a difference a good nights sleep makes!

See, when I’m working away from home, I tend to have to live in a hotel. Living a jetset lifestyle has its upsides and downsides but something I consider a major downside is hotel beds and, in particular, hotel pillows. Not to put too fine a point on it: they suck. When I’m away from home for a long time, I start missing my bed before I start missing anything else. Several girlfriends have been confused by this, but my bed has been around a lot longer than they have, and is still here long after they’ve left. We have shared many intimate moments, and some of them have included the aforementioned girlfriends. These are fond memories that comfort me when I am forced to endure the one-size-fits-none concept of hotel sleeping arrangements.

There must be someone, somewhere, who likes hotel pillows. I have yet to meet them. Every single person I have discussed this with has said that they also dislike hotel pillows. They are too thin. A single pillow does not provide enough support for my head and so I must squash it together to achieve the correct height-above-mattress for a good night’s rest. As soon as I stop concentrating on the squashing, i.e.: fall asleep, gravity does its work and the pillow is once again too thin. Two hotel pillows together is too thick, and I can feel the chiropractor bills ratcheting up during even a brief attempt at this technique. To help remedy this situation, I have a brilliant business idea that I am willing to share with the world: the eigenPillow(tm). All I ask in return is that all the hotels I stay at buy and use eigenPillows.

The eigenPillow comes in three sizes: 1/4, 1/3 and 1/2. With these three sizes you can stack pillows together to achieve pretty much any desirable pillow-thickness you desire. I figure the current hotel pillow comes in somewhere between a 1/3 and a 1/2 eigenPillow. I seem to like either a 1/2 or a 2/3 eigenPillow depending on my mood, phase of moon or if I have to share. There will be different materials for eigenPillows to cater for those who prefer different stuffability(tm) styles. The eidereigenPillow is a pure goosedown pillow that can be compressed into all sorts of funky shapes for those who like that sort of thing, like me. There is the polyeigenPillow which is made of a synthetic stuffing that is highly elastic for those people who like that sort of thing, like hotels. Freaks. Then there is the latexeigenPillow that is the current fad style. Lots of people swear by them, and I’ve yet to meet someone who swears at them, so I figure I may as well jump on the bandwagon. Custom eigenPillows could be created for the right price or if I think the concept is funny enough for me to do it for the giggle-factor.

As you may be able to tell, my mood has been dramatically improved after a couple of good nights sleep in my own bed. I am seriously considering packing my own pillow for my next trip so that I can attempt to get a decent night’s sleep while I’m away. If I can get it to fit without having to forego taking clothing, then I will, baggage allowances be damned. They won’t let me take my bed, so I’ll take what I can get away with. Life is too short for bad coffee, cask wine or hotel pillows.

So tonight when you’re curling up all snug and warm in your bed, give your pillow a hug and be thankful that you can spend the night sleeping together.

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