I can’t resist.
The other day actors Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman conducted a live interview with Bill Wixey and Kaci Aitchison from Q13 Fox News right here in Seattle. The interview centered around their upcoming film, Now You See Me. But as you now see here in this abridged clip, Mr. Freeman was having a bit of a struggle staying awake while Mr. Caine spoke.
I like in particular how he arouses briefly, nods his head slowly, as if he’s been fully attentive the entire time, and drifts back off.
Here is an online article, which includes Bill Wixey’s post-interview reaction and also the full video interview with Caine and Freeman. It’s worth watching the entire interview here: there is much more sleep time than what is seen in the brief clip above.
Now, to be fair about this, this soporific faux pas is likely not Freeman’s “fault,” and is probably not due to boredom, as at least one journalist has suggested. It appears that Caine and Freeman were interviewed from a studio in New York. I’m guessing Freeman had flown from Los Angeles to New York shortly prior to the interview, and if this was the case he was probably recovering from jet lag.
Remember, there’s a 3-hour time difference between the west coast and the east coast. Sleepwise, it’s particularly tough to go from the west coast to the east coast, because upon arrival your brain is essentially asked suddenly to go to bed earlier and awaken earlier than usual, setting you up for insomnia and sleep deprivation. I know this from experience: I fell asleep at my table and virtually fell out of my chair once during a loud, boisterous classic rock awards banquet shortly upon arriving in London several years ago.
Additionally, in general, the older we get, the less tolerant our bodies become to insomnia, sleep deprivation, and shifts in our usual sleep scheduling. So I definitely empathize with our nearly 76 year-old Mr. Freeman, who was sitting in a comfortable, quiet environment during the interview, his uncooperative body clock begging for a snooze.
One final comment. I’m often asked if you fall asleep during the day just because you’re bored. The answer is no. However, if you are prone to becoming excessively sleepy during the day (due to sleep deprivation, an untreated sleep disorder, or the like), then your sleepy tendencies will be more likely to express themselves in the form of falling asleep by accident when you are sedentary as compared to when you’re active. When you’re bored you’re usually sedentary, so in that setting you’re therefore more likely to fall asleep. This is an important distinction to make; many people don’t get evaluated for their sleep disorders because they believe that falling asleep frequently during the day is normal because they’re bored.
Have a good, wakeful day, everyone!