Never Apologize! – Ask the Scientist //1

Welcome to the inaugural edition of “Ask the Scientist,” an experimental new column-style series of posts where a mostly un-qualified science “professional” fields general advice or lifestyle questions in an attempt to bolster readership and/or avoid feeling his own feelings! I hope you enjoy, and I’d love to answer your queries; just use the form below.  It’s as anonymous as you want it to be! (But, note that the Russians are always watching, and that cannot be helped by me, a guy who barely knows how to activate a WordPress template.) 

Exhausted RN writes:

“Is it wrong to take a 2-hour nap immediately after arriving home from work prior to making dinner? May or may not happen daily.”

First of all, Exhausted RN, kudos on the construction of the question itself. This is not your first figurative rodeo! (Although, as a total side-note, I would be interested to know if you’ve ever participated in an ACTUAL rodeo.) You’ve used the very most of the question-asking format to tell me about yourself, both in your chosen pseudonym AND your semi-confessional ending, which I’m choosing to read, “Happens daily.”

As to the heart of your question, I say this: Never apologize for taking a nap.


I have very few hard and fast rules for life, but the right of every man, woman, and child to get some shut-eye whenever they can is a right that I will fight for until the day I die (likely, of exhaustion)! How many times does medical science have to publish a super-boring study proving the importance of sleep before we realize that we need to stop apologizing for snoozing?

Sleep is a right. Sleep is a virtue. Heck, the apostle Peter was made a saint for many reasons, but I count among the highest of those reasons the fact that he was once in prison, possibly about to be tried and killed for preaching the gospel, and the angel who came to break him out had to hit him to wake him up! Why? Because the future St. Pete knew the importance of a good nap!

We could end the answer there, but I will add a couple of observational tidbits, which might enhance the quality of your home life. Firstly, part of the practicality of this situation you seem to find yourself in depends on when you get home from work. If you’re rolling in from work, say, at 8 AM and you take a 2-hour our nap before preparing dinner, that means that you’re hitting the kitchen at around 10 am and thus spending seven or eight hours preparing dinner. Unless you’re fixing a 12-course meal for a 17th-century European monarch, complete with roasted hare and truffle soup, smoked eel, and gold-encrusted Morel soufflé, 8-hours might be overkill.

Also, although I don’t work in the medical field myself, I’m aware that there is always free food provided for the doctors and other medical staff SOMEWHERE on the premises. Never be ashamed to sneak into kitchens and conference rooms and fill as many Rubbermaids as you can carry home for dinner. Let’s not dance around this: doctors don’t need free food. What they need are well-rested nurses, content and confident because their families are thriving (even if it’s on leftover taco bar and party subs).

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