Mike Buzzelli

Column Mike Buzzelli

Mike Buzzelli is a stand up comedian and published author. He is a theater and arts critic for 'Burgh Vivant, Pittsburgh's online cultural talk magazine, and an active board member of the Pittsburgh New Works Festival, the Carnegie Arts Initiative and the Carnegie Screenwriters. His book, "Below Average Genius" is a collection of essays culled from his weekly humor column here in the Observer-Reporter.

Nocturnal admissions

August 10, 2013

I know most people would disagree, but I think I am pretty normal. To be fair, no one insane thinks they’re insane. I would like to think that if I am crazy, I can, at the very least, pass for normal. I don’t wear a tin-foil hat. I don’t argue with myself on street corners. And I wouldn’t wear a superhero costume in my daily life, not even to get out of jury duty.

Lately, however, I have had recurring bouts of insomnia.

Now, I have friends who love scary movies and then tell me they have trouble sleeping. Big surprise! If you watch a show called “Wives with Knives,” I can understand if you have trouble sleeping. The entire true-crime show is about women who off their husbands with pointy objects. If you watch that show, you probably don’t want to hear your spouse in the kitchen rattling the cutlery late at night. I would have problems sleeping if I liked scary stuff, but I don’t. Yet, I still have insomnia.

I go to bed just fine. I fall asleep almost immediately. Friends and lovers have told me I am like a light switch. I just shut off, sometimes in mid-sentence. However, I have a relatively new-to-me sleeping disorder. Every night, I get up at some ungodly time and use the bathroom. Afterward, I have trouble going back to sleep.

My brain decides that 3 a.m. is a rational time to have a discussion. Some part of me decides that thinking and worrying in the middle of the night is cool. It’s not, kids.

Most of the time, I don’t worry at all. I love to not worry and be happy. I live a pretty Bobby McFerrin life. However, for some reason, my brain kicks in late at night. They’re not scary thoughts. They’re mundane thoughts. I will use an actual example in a sentence. “I need new ink for my printer.” Now, it doesn’t stop there. Instead I launch into, “I should get a black and white printer. I hardly use color, but I have to replace these cartridges a lot.

“I need magenta and cyan. Why don’t they just call them red and blue? Yet, yellow is yellow. That’s not fair.”

Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. Ad infinitum, a never-ending loop of monotony. Then, I got to this question: “How do they make all the colors from these four?”

It seems to me, even if it was an important question, I wasn’t going to answer it at 3:15 a.m. If you haven’t guessed by now, these were a far, far way from important questions.

I may just start going to bed earlier. That way, if I get up in the middle of the night, I’ll have a few good hours of sleep. I may have to go to “Farmer Time” and start getting up at 2 a.m. If you see me buying a rooster, stop me. I might just be a little bit crazy after all.



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