I am not what you might call an early riser.
You might not even call me a late riser because left to my own devices, I'll sleep past noon.
This after going to bed at around 10:00 pm.
I'm a marathon sleeper and suffer greatly when I don't get a good 10 hours solid, and really only start to feel like myself after I've had twelve. Back in the day, I'd indulge myself and put in a good 24, this before I had anything resembling responsibility.
In fact, it may be true that for many years I avoided responsibility at all costs in terror that I might not be able to sleep as much as I'd like.
Obviously, this had it's repercussions.
These days, I have to get up in the morning and it's something that I've never gotten used to, no matter how many years it has been going on.
My body has never adjusted, my mind has always retaliated, and it generally takes me at least a good hour to go from awake to actually coherent.
I have to set my alarm well before I can expect to do anything, let alone get in a car.
I've found that coffee helps the situation, and I've found that with a really strong cup or two (we're talking mud black personally ground stuff here), I can cut that response time to maybe a half hour, even though it does little to stem the nausea and dizziness that occur every time I wake up early.
But not so long ago I received a gift from my mother that made everything marginally better.
This was the gift that measurably changed my life.
Every morning now when I wake up, I have a cup of coffee in my Honolulu blue wide-rimmed Lions mug, featuring the old school profile of the Detroit Lion in attack position.
And for some reason, every morning, this makes me smile.
I guess the difference between the gear you wear and the tool you use is that the gear you wear is really designed for other people to see.
When I wear my Lions hat, I know I'm wearing it, but I don't see it and therefore forget that it's even on my head shortly after I've put it on.
The Lions mug, on the other hand, is always there looking at me every morning, coaxing me through what amounts to my daily hell.
Sure you could say that it would be an omnipresent reminder of the team's futility, but that's not how fandom works with me. I may complain from time to time, but really I'm more proud to be a Lions fan than any of the other Detroit teams I root for, and it's that pride that makes me smile every morning when I take a sip of my wake-up elixir.
It's the Detroit Lions mug I see through blurry eyes, half still dreaming about a Super Bowl victory.
It's the Detroit Lions mug I see when I'm cursing the world for not stepping to the ticks of my internal clock.
It's the Detroit Lions mug I see when I finally become cognizant of the golden sun peaking up behind the shroud of darkness, and it's the Detroit Lions mug that feeds me my morning sustenance, like a baby's bottle nursing me into the conscious world.
Am I losing my mind?
Have the years of perpetual losing finally cracked what was left of my marginal sanity?
Does the emergence of the Lions mug as a pivotal part of my daily routine speak more about my fandom or my pathos?
At this point I don't really care, and for those of you out there that loathe getting up in the morning like me, I would highly recommend the Lions mug.
It'll make your life better, too.