Dave, do you have any thoughts on the themes of Benjamin Button?"
I open my eyes, blink rapidly, and attempt to sit up in my chair.
"Ahh, yes," I reply. "I really feel that the underlying theme in the film is ‘love' and how it relates to time." While I stroke my beard and attempt to subtly wipe away some eye boogies, an awkward silence fills the air.
Was my answer wrong? No, not necessarily. But the answer had already been given five minutes ago when I was nodding off, dreaming of moving staircases in the gym that lead to a three-headed dog named Lilly.
We've all made fools of ourselves by repeating a response or simply not being awake when the question is asked. It's embarrassing and typically does not go over well with the professors. Here, in my new "How-To" section, we understand there is really no way to avoid that.
In-class napping can be broken down in ways similar to a Pokémon card, or a video game character. "Napping Points" represent the quality of the nap. "Recovery Time" indicates the amount of time it takes to react to a professor's question. "Risk Factor" measures the likelihood of the nap affecting your grade in the class. The following is a thorough compilation of proven sleeping techniques.
The Bathroom Stall:
Want to take a full, uninterrupted nap? Our senior sleep advisor, senior Mischa Serlin, provides inside information on what experts are calling "The Bathroom Stall," or simply "The Stall." The procedure is easy, Serlin insists, "Just get up and go to the bathroom." But here's the rub – do NOT actually go the bathroom (full bladder pending). Locate a cozy chair or couch and sleep to your heart's content… or until the janitor finds you.
Napping Points: 4.8/5
Recovery Time: N/A (You're not actually in the classroom unless you're doing it wrong).
Risk Factor: Very high — but often worth it.
Simple enough. Place your fist directly under your chin and elbow on the desk. Depending on your balancing skills, it can be quite comfortable.
Napping Points: 3/5
Recovery Time: 4.5 seconds
Risk Factor: Moderate. Though this method has been known to be completely undetectable to professors with bifocals.
The Moody Teenager/The Dementor:
They were plentiful in high school. Serlin also encourages this technique. "Just grow your hair out," he says, indicating his forehead where a nice crop of bangs used to sit. "They cover your eyes." If you do not wish to go full-on emo, Serlin advises a comfortable hoodie that covers the eyes.
Napping Points: 3.7/5
Recovery Time: Depending on experience level, 2 to 8 seconds.
Risk Factor: Mild. The teacher may just assume you have hit another round of puberty.
The Planner *:
A previously unheard of concept, the Planner actually gets an adequate amount of sleep the night before. Therefore, the Planner is able to use the extra sleep stored in what we'll call the "sleeping bank." With this, they possess the ability to sit with their eyes open throughout class.
Napping Points: 5/5
Recovery Time: 0 seconds
Risk Factor: None
Wear aviators, and a leather jacket to complement them. For full effect, refer to a classmate friend as "Goose." Yes, I just referenced "Top Gun."
Napping Points: 4/5
Recovery Time: 0. Because the professor may assume you're so focused, there's no reason to call on you.
Risk Factor: Negative, Ghost Rider
Jerk Factor: Remarkably High
Dear reader, I hope that you now understand the importance of learning in-class sleeping techniques. There's a different technique for every professor. And remember — practice, practice, practice. If you have any nap-time stories to share, feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Professors may also send hate mail (limit one e-mail per day) to the aforementioned address.
*Planners are non-nocturnal and incredibly rare. Because we know so little about these creatures, remember to keep a safe distance.
— Jorgenson is a sophomore from Shawnee, Kan., majoring in English writing and film studies.