TRX S3E15: SLEEP TIGHT
Ernest Hemingway once said, “I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I’m awake.” I’m your host, Leah. I’m Phil…and I’m Steve, today we’ll be talking about “hitting the hay,” “sawing logs,” “getting some shut eye” the very common--yet still mysterious--thing we call sleep.
INTRO In spite of all of humanity spending one third of their lives sleeping, scientists still don’t know the exact reason why we sleep. According to SleepFoundation.org sleep remains one of the most enduring and intriguing mysteries in health science.
Here are just a few interesting facts about the drowsy subject from dreams.co.uk
Sleep deprivation will kill you more quickly than going without food. The record for longest time anyone has remained awake is 11 days. We’ll talk more about sleep deprivation a bit later.
One job in England at the time of the industrial revolution was to go around and knock on people’s windows to wake them up for work. Just like the wake up call you can request from the front desk of a hotel.
Whales and dolphins literally fall half asleep. Only one side of their brain at a time will go to sleep. The other half remains awake so that they can continue to come up for air.
The dreams of people who were born blind and never had sight revolve around emotions, sound and smell. Deaf people often use sign language in their dreams.
And 12% of people dream entirely in black and white. Before color television was introduced, only 15% of people dreamt in color. It’s no surprise that older people dream in black and white more often than younger people.
Ideally falling asleep should only take 10 to 15 minutes. Never happens that way for me. But if it takes less than five minutes to fall asleep you are most likely sleep deprived.
One of our biggest sleep distractions is 24-hour internet access. If you are having trouble getting to sleep try to eliminate all screens for an hour or more before bed. I know that’s hard to do.
Sleep is universal. Everyone needs sleep. I’ve reached the age where an afternoon nap is something I look forward to! I’d like to begin with some interesting sleep quotes that I found on a website called laylasleep.com sponsored by the Layla Mattress Company.
“If you’re going to do something tonight that you’ll be sorry for in the morning, sleep late.” – Henny Youngman
“It is a common experience that a problem difficult at night is resolved in the morning after the committee of sleep has worked on it.” – John Steinbeck
“Never go to bed mad. Stay up and fight.” – Phyllis Diller
“You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.” – Dr. Seuss
“Without enough sleep, we all become tall two-year-olds.” – JoJo Jensen
“A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor’s book.” – Irish Proverb
“I want to be like a caterpillar: eat a lot, sleep for a while, wake up beautiful.” – Anonymous
Our thanks to Danielle Basak who is in charge of partnership management with Layla Mattress Company for sharing those quotes with us.
I have a quote to add…Groucho Marx once joked, “Anything that can’t be done in bed isn’t worth doing at all.”
Sleep disorders It’s really hard to function if you had just one sleepless night, not to mention having a disorder that makes it hard to ever get a good night’s sleep. According to healthline.com the 5 major sleep disorders are…
The first is insomnia which I think most people are aware of and have experienced at some point. It’s the inability to fall asleep or to remain asleep.
Then there’s Sleep Apnea like you have. This is a serious medical condition where you stop breathing in your sleep which causes the body to take in less oxygen. You also wake up many times during the night. There is a wide range of effects this has on the body during the day. It can affect the heart and your overall health.
I have experienced sleep apnea myself. Within the past year I have undergone a sleep study where I went to a facility and was hooked up to a spaghetti bowl full of leads and probes. I had them taped to my chest and legs and glued to my head. Then I was told, “Good night!” After a fitful night of trying to sleep with all those attachments I was told that I had sleep apnea. A combination of sinus treatments and a new invention called the Inspire probe were prescribed for me, and they have been remarkably helpful! I am very grateful for the treatments that I have received and I am sleeping a thousand percent better than before.
Sleep apnea is very common and my husband Paul has it as well. Paul started sleeping with his C-Pap machine which is a machine that provides positive pressure on someone’s airway assisting them to breath during sleep. He noticed an immediate improvement in his focus and energy throughout the day but was super amazed that he could see colors much more vibrantly. Maybe that had something to do with him being slightly colorblind but it was a totally unexpected side effect of being able to sleep.
Next is Narcolepsy which is defined as sudden “sleep attacks” that occur while awake. This means that you will suddenly feel extremely tired and fall asleep without warning. The disorder can also cause sleep paralysis, which may make you physically unable to move right after waking up. Although narcolepsy may occur on its own, it is also associated with certain neurological disorders, such as multiple sclerosis.
Restless Legs Syndrome--or RLS--is something I struggle with on occasion. It’s defined as an overwhelming need to move the legs. This urge is sometimes accompanied by a tingling sensation in the legs.
RLS is often associated with certain health conditions, including ADHD and Parkinson’s disease, but the exact cause isn’t always known. It does run in families and I have several family members that have RLS. For me it was worse whenever I was pregnant and when I take certain over the counter meds like the active ingredient in Benadryl which unsurprisingly also happens to be in a lot of medications that help you fall asleep. I learned that one the hard way. So annoying!!
And finally there’s REM Sleep Behavior Disorder which I think is the most interesting on the list. And probably the most debilitating. Steve, I think you have some stories for us about this particular disorder.
Yes, While I was visiting with the folks at the sleep study facility I asked them to share some of the stranger sleep stories that they have encountered. They were very informative concerning some bizarre sleep issues and so we are going to be discussing some of those today including REM Sleep Disorder.
REM Sleep Disorder
You are probably familiar with REM Sleep. REM stands for Rapid Eye Movement. According to the Mayo Clinic, REM sleep is when you are in your deepest sleep. It is usually associated with dreams and a very still body. You normally don’t move during REM sleep. REM sleep occurs usually during the second half of the night. However, there are rare cases when REM sleep goes bad.
REM Sleep Disorder is a sleep disorder in which you physically act out vivid, often unpleasant dreams with vocal sounds and sudden, often violent arm and leg movements during REM sleep — sometimes called dream-enacting behavior.
With REM sleep behavior disorder, instead of experiencing the normal temporary paralysis of your arms and legs during REM sleep, you physically act out your dreams. The onset can be gradual or sudden, and episodes may occur occasionally or several times a night. The disorder often worsens with time.
The Mayo Clinic website lists the following as symptoms of REM Disorder:
Movement, such as kicking, punching, arm flailing or jumping from bed, in response to action-filled or violent dreams, such as being chased or defending yourself from an attack
Noises, such as talking, laughing, shouting, emotional outcries or even cursing
Being able to recall the dream if you awaken during the episode
Their website also states that the condition is found most commonly in men over age 50, but cases involving women are increasing. It can also be associated with certain neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease as well as drug and alcohol use or withdrawal. And the website also notes that this condition can result in physical injury to the individual or to their bed partner.
Legal Cases involving REM Sleep disorder From abcnews.com we learn the story of just such a case. Early in the morning of February 20, 2010 in the Keizer, Oregon home of Adam Kearns and his wife Randi, the night silence was broken by the sound of their five year old son entering his parents’ bedroom screaming with night terrors from a bad dream. As Randi was getting out of bed to comfort her child, her husband Adam suddenly punched her in the face three times.
This was extremely out of character for Adam. As Randi explained to the 911 dispatcher, "He started yelling at me - I couldn't reason with him," she cried "It was like he was asleep. It was the weirdest thing - he's never hurt me in his life." "The next thing that I knew, Adam was back asleep snoring."
Randi Kearns said her husband, who works for the Oregon Department of Human Services, has always been a loving and caring husband and father. "He's not a violent man," she said. "He's never hurt me or even made me feel afraid." However, after this incident Adam was arrested and spent three days in jail. After his release the judge ordered him to stay away from his wife.
He sought out treatment at the Willamette Sleep Center in Salem, Oregon. Doctors there surmise that he had a primal reaction to his son’s screams. I was never able to locate a follow-up to this story.
Night terrors That’s such an incredible story. REM Sleep Disorder was to blame for Adam acting that way and I know you have more stories about that disorder but I wanted to talk for just a minute about night terrors. You mentioned that Adam’s son had night terrors and that was what triggered the entire situation. That is a subjectI know a little bit about. According to HopkinsMedicine.org Night terrors are defined as a sleep disorder in which a person quickly awakens from sleep in a terrified state. That’s not like waking up from a nightmare still feeling afraid, it’s like being trapped in a nightmare even while awake.
The cause is unknown but night terrors are often triggered by fever, lack of sleep or periods of emotional tension, stress or conflict. NIght terrors are often experienced by children for unknown reasons but it’s known that it Night terrors are inherited, meaning that the condition runs in families. They occur in 2% of children and usually are not caused by psychological stress but being overtired can be a trigger.
My middle son, Sam, experienced night terrors as an elementary school aged kid and I think I still have PTSD from it. He would “wake up” in the middle of the night screaming as if he were being murdered. I say “wake up” in quotations because while it seemed like Sam was awake he really wasn’t. It was as if he was caught in a nightmare even while conscious. We could interact with him but he would still be seeing what was in his nightmare, like his bed being on fire. One night I had caught a couple lightning bugs, placed them in a jar in the boys room so they could watch them as they fell asleep. In the middle of the night Sam woke up screaming that there was a bomb in his room. In his mind the blinking light was a bomb about to explode. Once he was terrified that his pillow was blue. It was blue, or at least the pillow case was blue. No idea of why it scared him but my husband ripped the pillowcase off and threw the pillow back in the bed and Sam immediately went back to sleep. After being awakened by a screaming child, it took us forever for the adrenaline rush to subside and get back to sleep.
Sam would never remember the episodes but they were terrifying and exhausting to me and my husband. I’m sure Sam’s brother Joe that he shared a room with wasn’t getting a good night’s sleep either. Finally we realized that the asthma medication Sam was taking at night was the cause of the night terrors. We switched his daily dose to the morning and it solved the problem. Unfortunately it’s not that easy to eliminate night terrors in most cases and the children just have to grow out of them.
REM Sleep Disorder Cases in Women. As noted earlier, REM Disorder most cases involve men, but increasing cases involving women are being noted. An article from the National Institute of Health details the story of a young woman who was having a very vivid dream of using a public restroom. She noticed a peeping Tom looking at her through the cracks in the partition wall and she yelled at him. Then as she saw him running away she decided to jump on him. She awoke to the sound of her body crashing through the glass top of her bedside table. She sustained several cuts and abrasions.
REM Murder From watermarksilverchair.com we find a study of a case in which a murder may have occurred during REM Sleep Disorder.
On December 26, 1993, the defendant, a 37-year old Pittsburgh male laborer, fatally shot his wife. The police were first notified of the incident after 2:15 a.m. on the night of the shooting from a 911 call made by the defendant. He claimed that he went to bed that night at 1:15 a.m. and the next thing that he remembered was being awakened by the sound of a gunshot. On awakening he realized that he had shot his wife. He stated that she had gone to bed over an hour earlier than he had.
Transcripts of the 911 call revealed that the defendant had clear senses at the time he made the call, giving complete information as to his name and address. He admitted during the call that he must have shot his wife. He claimed amnesia.
At first this appeared to be a case of REM Sleep Disorder. However, upon further investigation it was learned that the man had been abusive in the past to his wife and children as well as previous partners. He was also a heavy drinker consuming as much as a case of beer every two days. It was also learned that the wife had written a note to a friend claiming that she was planning to take the children and leave her husband after the holidays.
At the trial, the jury found the defendant guilty of first-degree murder with a mandatory sentence of life imprisonment without parole. Newspaper interviews with anonymous jury members after the trial suggested that, from the outset of the case, they did not seriously consider the defense that the defendant may have shot his wife accidentally during his sleep.
Exploding Head Syndrome One last sleep disorder that I feel like I have to mention is called Exploding Head Syndrome. I mean with a name like that there’s no way we could not talk about it.
According to ClevelandClinic.org Exploding Head Syndrome is a type of sleep disorder in which you hear a loud noise or explosive crashing sound in your head. The sound isn't real or heard by anyone else. The episode typically happens suddenly either when you're beginning to fall asleep or when you wake up during the night. Even though it has a name that sounds painful, Exploding Head Syndrome is painless and won’t kill you. we hope.
Most individuals who experience EHS describe it as an explosion in their head or hearing sounds like gunshots, thunder or another very loud noise. Some people even experience a bright light as well. Very scary if you wake up to that in the middle of the night but otherwise harmless. Well except for disturbing your sleep.
ODDITY DU JOUR: PHOTOGRAPHIC COINCIDENCE Michael Dick is a retired carpenter living in Bow, East London. Several years ago his first marriage disintegrated and he and his wife got a divorce. It was a very nasty divorce and so Michael had no further contact with his ex-wife after that. Unfortunately he lost contact with his daughter Lisa as well who was 21 years old at the time of the divorce.
Fast forward ten years to when Michael was semi-retired. He was happily married with two step daughters he very much loved but he started to really miss Lisa and decided he wanted to try and find her. The only thing he knew to do was to go to the house he used to live in with Lisa and his first wife, a house that they continued to live in after the divorce.
Michael along with his two step daughters, Shannon and Samantha, traveled to Sudbury. He pulled into the driveway leaving his step daughters in the car and he nervously knocked on the door. The person that answered the door however was not Michael’s first wife or his daughter. There was another family living in the house and they had no idea of how to help Michael but they wished him well.
Back in the car Michael talked with Shannon and Samantha and the three of them decided the only other thing they could do was to put an ad in the local paper in the hopes that Lisa would see it. And so they made their way to the local paper and spoke to a journalist there. The journalist convinced Michael to let him do a small story on the search for Lisa instead of just placing an ad. He had Michael and the two girls stepped outside onto the street where he took their picture together. In the next edition of the newspaper the picture and a story about Michael’s search for his long-lost daughter was printed several pages in. It was a long shot.
Now 31 years old, Lisa was married and had three kids of her own and had actually started thinking about the dad she hadn’t seen in so many years. She thought she might go looking for him so that she could have a relationship with her dad and her kids could meet their grandfather. She didn’t know where to start though. She looked on social media but her dad wasn’t on there. Lisa was at a loss of what to do next.
Then one day while at work Lisa went into the breakroom and saw a copy of the Suffolk Free Press newspaper. She began flipping through the pages and then she stopped when she saw a picture of herself. There was a candid shot where in the background Lisa and her mother were walking down a street in Sudbury during a recent trip Lisa had made to visit her mom to talk to her about trying to find her dad. Lisa didn’t recognize the other people in the photo but when she read the caption below the picture she couldn’t believe it. The photo was of her father and her two step-sisters along with a story of how her dad was looking for her!
So on the only day that Lisa had recently been in Sudbury talking to her mother about how to find her father, Lisa was just feet from her father and step-sisters as they were looking for her and it was all caught in that single photo the journalist had taken.
Lisa would read the article and reach out to her father Michael who, when he heard the story, first thought it was a scam. Eventually Lisa was able to convince her dad the unlikely story about being in his photo was true and Michael drove back to Sudbury to meet his grandkids for the first time. To this day he and Lisa are still in each other’s lives.
Dreams Let’s talk about dreams. WebMD.com says there are many theories about why we dream, but no one knows for sure. Some researchers say dreams have no purpose or meaning. Others say we need dreams for our mental, emotional, and physical health.
According to SleepHealthFoundation.org we do know that everyone dreams whether they remember the dreams or not. Most dreams happen during REM sleep which occurs in short episodes across each night each about 90 minutes apart. Our longer dreams are in the morning hours.
The meaning behind dreams--or even if they have meaning at all--is something no one can agree on. Freud had a lot to say about dreams. He thought all dream were sexual in some way. But some scientists say that dreams are nothing more than our brains playing around with the memories we’ve stored up, basically the brain taking a break while our bodies rest. They say that if you picture a person that is a stranger in your dream then you have actually met that person, or someone who looked like that person at some point in your life, that your brain never just invents someone you’ve never seen before.
At the other end of the spectrum a lot of people insist that dreams have helped them deal with and work out internal conflict. There’s an urban legend that says if you die in a dream then you actually die in real life. This has been proven wrong as plenty of people hav dreamt of their own death. While I’ve never dreamt I died I have had a dream of a loved one that had recently passed away and at some point in hanging out with them in my dream I realized that if I can see them then I must be dead too. I was very alarmed and immediately woke up.
The ancient Romans and Greeks put a lot of importance on dreams and believed that dreams could contain messages sent directly from the gods, or from deceased loved ones, and even that dreams could tell the future. They went to great lengths to cultivate those prophetic dreams.
Marc Liblin When researching about dreams, I came across the bizarre story of Marc Liblin. When Marc was six years old he lived with his family in the foothills of the Vosges (Vohj) mountains of Eastern France. He was a bright and intelligent boy which set him apart from the other kids so that he didn’t have a lot of friends. Over the course of several nights Marc had dreams in which he was taught a strange and unfamiliar language.
As an adult Marc still struggled to fit in and lived on the fringe of society. He had always been known around town as the boy that was fluent in a completely unknown language that he was taught in his dreams. A language that no one knew if it was truly a language or just gibberish. Marc probably should have kept his dreams to himself but it’s good that he didn’t.
Two researchers from the University of Rennes (ren) heard about Marc and became intrigued. They wanted to decipher and translate his language. For two years, they fed the strange sounds he made into computers but never could match it to a known language. Finally they got the idea to consult the various sailors on shore leave to see if they had ever heard anything like it. To the bars and taverns they went taking Marc with them.
In one particular bar Marc gave a monologue in his special language when the barkeeper recognized the tongue as something he had heard in his travels while in the Navy. He said it was spoken on one of the most remote Polynesian islands. And in a stroke of luck he knew a local elderly lady that speaks the language.
Marc and the researchers met with the Polynesian woman named Meretuini Make. It forever changed Marc’s life. Marc greeted her in his special language, and she answered straight away in the same language. All along the language that Marc had learned in his dreams as a young boy was an old Rapa dialect of the lady’s island homeland.
Marc finally found someone who understood him. He went on to marry the lady and in 1983 left with her to move back to her homeland where his language is spoken.
I got my information from WorldDreamBank.org in an article written by Judith Schalansky who also wrote a book containing this story. It is titled Atlas of Remote Islands: Fifty Islands I Have Never Set Foot On and Never Will
Lucid dreaming Did you know that you could control your dreams? Being able to recognize when you are dreaming is called lucid dreaming. It is to become aware that you are in a dream and then you can control the way the dream is playing out which seems like such a cool adventure!
According to MedicalNewsToday.com lucid dreaming has been used in a variety of ways to help people in a variety of ways. One of the most widely used applications of lucid dreaming is to help with nightmares. If you can recognize that what you are facing is just a dream, a figment of your own imagination, then you can choose to fight and conquer it. The possibilities in the dream world are endless. You can give yourself superpowers or the ability to fly. Being able to gain control in a nightmare situation usually puts an end to recurring nightmares.
People can also explore their phobias within a lucid dream. Being able to face a spider while you cannot be hurt helps a person to gain control over their fears. This all makes me think of Boggarts in the Harry Potter books where they take the form of a person’s worst fear. The way to fight a boggart is to imagine it as something absurd or funny. I wonder if J.K. Rowling was thinking of lucid dreams when she created the boggart.
Have either one of you experienced a lucid dream? There are a variety of ways you can train yourself to become lucid while you dream.
One of the ways is a reality check. Have you heard the phrase “pinch me to see if I’m dreaming”? Turns out that’s valid. You make it a habit to do a simple routine several times a day where you tell yourself “If i’m dreaming this will not hurt.” and then pinch yourself enough to cause discomfort. If you do this often enough you will eventually do it in your dreams where it will not hurt and alert you to the fact that you are dreaming.
There are other things you can do to induce a lucid dream like keeping a dream journal or setting an alarm to wake you up at a time when you are most likely in REM sleep. Then you are hopefully able to fall immediately back into REM sleep while keeping in mind that you are about to dream. You guys try it and let us know how it goes.
Salvador Dali Some people use lucid dreaming in order to induce creativity. Salvador Dali did something similar. Instead of lucid dreaming though he worked to take advantage of the hypnagogic state. That’s the place where you hover between being awake and being asleep floating at the very edge of consciousness. You know how it is when you’re falling asleep and your mind starts dreaming a little before you fall totally asleep. When in this state you may see visions and hallucinations, hear noises (including your own name or imagined speech), and feel almost physical sensations.
Salvador Dali was convinced that this was where his inspiration came from and looking at his surreal painting art it’s easy to see that it came from a dream.
The way Dali would induce this state was to wait until he felt like he needed to nap. He would sit upright in a chair with a bowl on his lap and hold a key in his hand. He was very specific on which chair, the type of bowl and even the type of key. The key was held over the bowl and as he fell asleep he would drop the key which would make a startling sound when it hit the bowl and would wake him up.
Dali would repeat this over and over slipping in and out of sleep and this prolonging his time spent in the hypnagogic state.
Dali called this “Slumber with a key,” and was convinced it was the source of his artistic inspirations. I can see it. He claimed to have learned this trick from Capuchin monks and recommended it to anyone who worked with ideas, claiming that the micro nap “revivified” the “physical and psychic being.”
But don’t think that the uniquely strange artist was the only one who did this. According to OpenCulture.com, where I got this information about Dali’s napping habits, many visionaries such as William Blake, John Keats, and Samuel Taylor Coleridge have made use of waking dream states as sources of inspiration. Both Beethoven and Wagner composed while half asleep. So there you go, if you want to be creative or innovative give this key method a try and video yourself doing it. Then send us the video!
Sleep Deprivation There have been a lot of studies on the effect Sleep deprivation has on a person’s focus, performance and overall health. From inc.com we find a terrific article by Melissa Chu about a sleep experiment. Back in December of 1963 a San Diego high school student named Randy Gardner decided to stay awake for eleven days. He wanted to break the previous record of 260 hours.
The experiment was originally for a high school science project, however a Stanford University researcher named William Dent learned about Randy’s experiment and offered to help out.
The first day, Randy woke up at 6:00 a.m. and had a relatively normal day. By the second day he had trouble focusing on his surroundings and recognizing objects. On day three he became grouchy and started slurring his speech. By day four he imagined that he was a professional football player.
The following days Randy was having a difficult time staying awake. The nights were the hardest. To make sure he didn’t fall asleep Dr. Dent and Randy’s friends stayed with him and kept him involved in board games, shooting baskets, and other activities. There were to be no drugs or stimulants involved, not even caffeine.
In order to make sure he was not harming himself Randy had regular hospital checkups. Physically he was doing OK. Mentally though he was getting more confused and forgetful. He even began having hallucinations where he imagined things that weren’t there.
On January 8 at 2 A.M., people cheered as Gardner broke the previous record of 260 hours. He spoke to journalists, had a checkup, and then went to sleep for fourteen hours and 40 minutes. Decades later, he is alive and well. Gardner says he sleeps on a reasonable sleep schedule and isn't the type to pull all-nighters.
The Russian Sleep Experiment Perhaps you have heard the story of the Russian Sleep Experiment.
According to menshealth.com the story goes that Soviet-era scientists created a stimulant which they believed would enable soldiers to not require sleep for up to 30 days. They decided to test their new gas on five prisoners, promising them their freedom upon completion of the experiment. They locked the five men in a hermetically sealed chamber and began pumping in the gas. Within a few days, the men were exhibiting the kind of paranoia and psychosis that is a typical symptom of sleep deprivation. But as time went on, they began to act even more strangely.
15 days into the experiment, when scientists could no longer see the men through the thick glass of the chamber, or hear them through the microphones, they filled the room with fresh air and unlocked it. There, they discovered that one of the men was dead, and the four surviving test subjects were all sporting horrendously violent injuries, some of which appeared to be self-inflicted.
Attempts to sedate the men were either unsuccessful or led to their deaths the moment they lost consciousness. Finally, when one of the researchers asked what exactly these men had become, the last surviving test subject told him that they represented the potential for evil that exists in all human beings, which is usually contained by sleep, but had been unleashed by their constant wakefulness.
Yes, a pretty frightening story, but it’s not true. It’s a complete urban legend that was promoted by a website (creepypasta) that is dedicated to telling creepy made up stories.
However it does pull from a bit of history.
Drugs and Sleep In 2020 a terrific book came out called Blitzed – Drugs in the Third Reich by Norman Ohler. It detailed the use of amphetamines by not only German soldiers, but by Hitler himself. Hitler believed that these drugs could free him and his soldiers from the need for sleep.
In May of 1940 French and British soldiers were entrenched along France’s common border with Germany. An invasion was expected and the Allies thought they were prepared. The invasion came, but not where it was expected. Hitler had his soldiers literally amped up on amphetamines and sent them through the Ardennes Forest through neighboring Luxembourg and Belgium and then pouring into France completely going around the French and British soldiers waiting at the common border. The German soldiers were so amped up that many reported they didn’t sleep for days as the invasion unfolded. They were in Paris before the French were even aware of the invasion. The German soldiers reported that for the first few days they felt great, but after a time the effects of sleeplessness set in and then they had trouble maintaining their focus. This fogginess appears to have allowed many of the now trapped British and French soldiers make their way to Dunkirk and escape to England.
Hitler was known himself as having very strange sleep patterns. His personal physician would freely prescribe him all the amphetamines he asked for. Thus amped up he would hold staff meetings until well after midnight and then insist that his officers and staff join him in watching movies until as late as 4:00 a.m. He would then sleep until around 9:00 a.m. or later. Strict orders were given not to wake him up. On the morning of June 6, 1944 Hitler was sleeping and no one dared to wake him up to inform him of the Normandy invasion. As the war dragged along, Hitler’s staff began to notice that his behavior became increasingly erratic. He would insist that his officers move regiments that did not exist into battle positions. He showed no regard for the well being of his soldiers. By the end of the war he was a mere shell of his former self.
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QUESTION: You know I love legend and lore. Do you remember the Sandman? The story goes that he would put sand in children’s eyes to help them fall asleep. One creepy version of the story is that he would steal the eyes of children who refused to go to sleep. Anything to get the kids to just go to bed already!
Our trivia challenge question is about some other mythical characters that were created by an American writer but with Dutch influence. According to my step-dad In west Berlin during the 50s and 60s these characters would appear on television around 7pm at night to signal that it was time for children to go to sleep. Who are they?
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Remnant Stew is created by me, Leah Lamp. Dr. Steven Meeker and I research, write and host each episode along with cringey commentary by our audio producer, Phillip Sinquefield. Theme music is by Kevin MacLeod with voiceover by Morgan Hughes. Special thanks goes out to Judy Meeker and Harbin Gould.
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