Sleep experts now contend that the main reason we need to get our quota of shut-eye is that it helps us absorb, digest and learn from what we've experienced in the preceeding day.
On this basis, I would like to set aside a week's sleep to really thoroughly digest what the preceding 52 weeks of my life have taught me. (Note: I mean seven consecutive days and nights, not just nights.)
Given there is fat chance of this happening, I will instead to resort to an old method of adding up the gains and losses of this year in terms of my wisdom, wealth and happiness:
Being 38 in Review
+Gained: 54,531 airmiles en route to, and coming back from, Vancouver, Chicago, London, Seattle, Tuscany and Budapest. (Hey, that's not a bad year!)
-Lost: One tree in the back yard due to a mysterious leaf-wilting disease...after which I cut it down.
+Gained: A few more pounds, and few more dollars: neither in sufficient amounts to either medically or financially retire.
-Lost: Touch with contemporary music. Ever heard of Crank Dat by Soulja Boy? No. Me either. But apparently 487 million people have watched it on YouTube.
+Gained: More appreciation for simply being a dad and a husband. Playing with trucks is cool; assembling ingenious train tracks layouts in the garage is even cooler: being a strong family unit is the best!
-Lost: Countless hours watching "Commodities Corner" on CNBC in the early mornings. Oh, the lengths I go to to stay up-to-date with the financial markets. Pork bellies, anyone?
+Gained: A newfound appreciation for my modest sleep quota...because from December onwards, when our second little offspring arrives, I know I will be getting even less!
-Lost: My last chance to fly in a Space Shuttle. Okay, so the chances were always slim that I was going to get invited to join the crew of Atlantis on the launch pad on July 6th, but I can now confirm that now invitation has been forthcoming with my birthday cards.
+Gained: Many good times with close friends and dear family. There are never enough hours, of course, but keep the invites coming for those weddings, kids' parties, birthday parties, stag dos....just get them in before December!
Last but not least...
Neither gained nor lost: any sense of an impending mid-life crisis! Roll-on 40!