In which I could never sleep face down on the floor of a Metro train, but I could fall asleep listening to Glassjaw

Listening to: The album “Clumsy” by Samiam


Samiam posted a song yesterday from their new album that’s due to come out this fall, which I learned about from the every trusty Punknews.  In the past, Samiam has never disappointed; if this track is representative of the new album it sounds like they’re about to continue that trend.  So chances are you’ve already heard this if you like Samiam as much as me.  If you have, here’s an easy link to listen to it again.  If not, try out these amazing sounds:


I have some weird music choices when it comes to what I like to have on as I’m falling asleep.  Glassjaw, Bear Vs. Shark, Jawbreaker, and A Perfect Circle (I admit it!) have all been past selections.  I know many people who can’t fall asleep with any sounds in the room, let alone music that emotes and surrounds as much as these.  But for whatever reason, this is the kind of thing that soothes me into the REM cycle.


You can see some weird things on the DC Metro.  In fact, there are blogs and Twitter accounts that devote plenty of time highlighting some of the absurdity.  In the nation’s capital, people often do three things while on the Metro: listen to something playing through headphones, read, and/or sleep.

Here’s a photo of a girl doing two of those:

it was probably a long day. hope those are some good tunes in there

You get the idea. Some people have strange takes on the combo, though.

This morning I Metro’d to work, which happens every now and then when I’m feeling too lazy to walk up the giant hill that stands between me and my usual bus.  I did the reading/dozing combo whilst on the train, which is probably why I didn’t see the man with the strange take on these common Metro-riding options.

The man I’m speaking of was wearing a white t-shirt, khaki shorts, sneakers, a baseball cap, and was lying face down on the Metro train floor.  He was halfway under a set of seats at the front end of the car.  I didn’t see him until I stood up for my stop, but there he was, full sprawl.  Others on the train were eyeing him curiously as well, some with looks of disgust, others with amusement.  A moment of concern took over first–is he hurt? Unconscious? But as the train slowed for my stop, he lifted his head to look around and check which station we were pulling into.  He looked perfectly awake and healthy.

I’m kicking myself for not having enough time to take a photo.  If I hadn’t been so engrossed in my zoned out/reading state, I surely would’ve seen him soon enough to photograph, post on Facebook, and tweet at @unsuckdcmetro while shamelessly hoping for a retweet.

Then leaving the station, I rode the elevator up with a guy, probably early thirties, who was dressed such that he was in the ambiguous state where it’s impossible to tell if he was a tourist.  He had on a plaid, button-down, short-sleeve shirt, a backpack that bulged slightly as though packed for at least a day away from home/hotel, and headphones blasting.  Blasting so much that I could clearly hear the music he was listening to, though I didn’t recognize it.


It got me thinking.  I rarely if ever have on a pair of headphones while walking around anymore, even with the volume turned low.  I’ve certainly never slept face-down on the floor of a Metro train (though I’m sure, if that ever does happen, it’ll be safe to call it the low point in my life).  But what’s so different between these two men appearing so comfortably engrossed in their sleep/music and my odd choices for music to which I fall asleep?

It may seem like a stretch, but the connection formed fairly clearly in my mind.  I’d never be comfortable sleeping on the floor of a Metro train (for what I hope would be obvious reasons), just as I wouldn’t be okay with blasting headphones so loudly on the street that I couldn’t hear what was going on around me.  And yet, I’m completely okay with loud, vibrant, adrenaline-inducing music for when I fall asleep.  More than that, I feel like I need it; I have a difficult time falling asleep in silence.

This blog certainly follows in the same vein of the one that precedes it.  It seems this has been what’s on my mind while forming direction for the entries.  Next week, a stray from this path is in order.  Feel free to comment with whether or not you agree.  And I think a future challenge I will pose for myself in this blog will be not to start any sentences with “I.”


– Picking it up and putting it down and picking it up again (I’m getting there, I swear)

– Tunes for the economic drama-rama

– “Mature” music tastes (yeah, right)

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