Dave Leggett | 1 October 2004
What time do you generally turn in of an evening? In my case it tends to be after midnight and I don't really give it a lot of thought. Do I get enough sleep? Maybe not, but the experts still don't seem to know a whole lot about why we sleep and how much we really need. It's slightly mysterious when you come to think of it, but there is a tendency to view people who need more than most as whimpy in some way. And there I was last night, hearing about that big televised 'debate' in Miami between the US President and his challenger when the commentator dropped into the report that George Dubya's bedtime is 9:30 pm. I couldn't believe it. The leader of the most powerful nation on the planet can afford to just say 'time to go up to Bedfordshire' (okay, or more likely 'I'm hitting the hay') at such an early hour. Margaret Thatcher was famous for only needing four hours, so what is this?
Shouldn't he be firing on all cylinders until the wee small hours, reading background papers and formulating grand strategies? And then I thought, well, fair play to the guy. He doesn't pretend to be an intellectual and is happy for the world to know that he likes his sleep. That's his style. The question I think the American electorate should probably ask, if he has a tendency to be hands off, is more about the people he surrounds himself with. Anyway, not really my business. At least he gets a good night's sleep and, presumably, doesn't fall asleep in meetings. Too many people misdirect their huge efforts and some people achieve much by just being smart about how they go about things. And we all know examples of people who max out on input, but whose output is highly questionable and the reverse is true also, of course. Are you feeling bright eyed and bushy-tailed this morning? Are your colleagues yawning? Me? After half a litre of fresh super-strength coffee, I'm just fine.
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