Nap Time: Why No Federal Mandate?

I know. There are some big policy fish in the skillet these days: health care, executive pay, mandated paid sick leave and so on. But hasn’t the time come when as a nation we need a federal law that would allow everyone to take a nap during the work or school day?

I’ll admit it. My schedule is such that most days I can enjoy a few zzzzzzzzzzs in the early to mid afternoon. I find that there is a napper’s high — mirroring the endorphin rush you get from a long run on the best day of the year, weatherwise. And even 30 minutes of snooze time will prepare me for my late afternoon Happy Hour get-together with John Jameson.

I was thinking about that yesterday during a work visit to DC — sans nap time. Whoa, that’s harsh. And I was cranky from late afternoon until I fell asleep watching TV at nine o’clock. (Full disclosure: I would have fallen asleep sooner but Dancing with the Stars wasn’t on last night.)

So simply put: Shouldn’t Congress enact a law requiring nap time?

I believe there would be national support for that — probably more so than for the so-called health care public option that appears to be causing so many members of the administration and Congress and Beltway lobbyists to lose sleep these days.

For instance, Paul Taylor wrote about a research study conducted by the Pew Research Center, “Nap Time.” He states that “on a typical day, a third of the adults (34%) in the United States take a nap.”

Now before you jump up and yell — “You, lie” — consider this from the study:

Napping thrives among all demographic groups, but it’s more widespread among some than others, according to a Pew Research Center Social & Demographic Trends survey of a nationally representative sample of 1,488 adults.

More men than women report that they caught a little snooze in the past 24 hours — 38% vs. 31%. This gender gap occurs almost entirely among older adults. More than four-in-ten ( 41%) men ages 50 and older say they napped in the past day, compared with just 28% of women of the same age. Below the age of 50, men and women are about equally likely to say they napped in the past day (35% vs. 34%).

Strikes me that there is the foundation here for bipartisan consensus and legislative support.

Yet I know getting a federal mandate for napping won’t be easy.

We need a champion in Congress.

Wonder if Olympia Snowe naps?

I’ll look into that this afternoon — after I get up from mine.


5 responses to “Nap Time: Why No Federal Mandate?

  1. I loved this post! I used to be so anti-naps, blabbering on and on about how I couldn’t relax or didn’t want to waste time with them, etc. Now that I live in Europe (and am an almost European–over one year residency and I can claim it, of course), I meet all kinds of people who nap. Good, solid sleep is very important to Europeans. Even at very top notch companies that I may or may not consult for ( šŸ˜‰ ), going to the work spa and taking a little sauna nap is downright encouraged. And if you say something like I would have said in America– I don’t really like to nap– people here will look at your like you’re a little nuts. Or they feel sorry for you šŸ™‚

  2. Hey, I’m telling you, if we can get Olympia Snowe on board we have a chance here. Otherwise, I’m a parade of one. As usual.

  3. I wish we could count on her for this one– but I read that in 657 votes, she didn’t even miss ONE vote. Not even to nap. So…

  4. I have long advocated ā€” and practiced ā€” this art. The universal appeal and need for a nap is self-evident. It is the lynchpin for “the pursuit of happiness.” No law needs enacting. Simply enforce the Constitution.

    Another problem solved. Pass me a beer

  5. Well, you’ve got a point there. And I wonder why the Founding Fathers didn’t incorporate napping into the Bill of Rights?

    Oh well. Your plea for a beer resonates — during any policy debate.

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