Saturday, January 19, 2008

Power nap

"Post-industrial society has an ambivalent attitude to sleep....[N]apping has been proved by scientisrts to have a revitalizing effect, but has so far failed to become part of the standard working day in Britain, where sleeping at work is still viewed as a sign of laziness. The Japanese have no such difficulty with the contradiction....There is a formalized napping ritual in Japan, which avoids the taint of indolence altogether by giving this form of sleep a different name, which may not mean the same thing as real sleep: 'inemura' is practised anywhere at any time, even during meetings. 'The Office Pillow' for sleeping at your desk has a spry and purposeful design. The brilliant inflatable mouse-pad for dream-surfing remains only a mouse-pad. In this way, 'inemura,' or power-napping, turns out to be the opposite of powerless napping, even though that is what it is." —Hugo Williams, "Freelance," TLS, January 18, 2008

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