The early bird gets the worm. The early worm… gets eaten.—Norman Ralph Augustine
Even by London standards, I am up way too early. You see, it’s not enough that we cover all the important fashion shows, I still have to keep up with my standard shooting schedule and this morning that includes doing some long exposure photography downtown. In order to pull off the look required, we need to be standing in the middle of the street by 5:00 AM. In order to be standing in the middle of the street by 5, I had to wake everyone up at 2. Being able to make coffee with my eyes still half shut is a very good thing.
Getting up early isn’t all that difficult for me on most mornings. I rather like London time, sort of. Our British friends tend to get things started around 9:00, which equates to 4:00 in Indianapolis. So, that’s typically the time I’m up and running. But we’re even beating that schedule today. As I type, Kat is doing hair and makeup on a lovely young model who is trying her best to be awake. My composition time is slow as I type a few words then have to reach for more coffee. More coffee. Always, more coffee.
Of course, you won’t be reading this until much later, will you? No, you have better sense than to be getting up this early. You’re almost certainly still lying in bed, totally oblivious to the fact that in order for your world to be ready for you at whatever time you decide to put your feet on the floor, someone else had to get up before you and prepare that Starbucks that you grab every morning, or the muffin that you eat while driving to work. You’re smart, letting someone else do the work like that.
I think of those poor chaps at the BBC who have to prepare the morning report, or the writers for Business Insider who have to not only write, but do research to be able to concatenate the most important news into a list of things I need to know before I start shooting off my big mouth. Of course, this is a Saturday, so there are no such lists. Not quite as many people are up at this unholy hour, which is why it is the perfect time for us to be taking pictures in the middle of the street.
The biggest danger in getting up so damned early is that the brain hasn’t had enough rest and recuperation time. I’m running on all of two hours sleep today. Yesterday, I splurged and had three hours. Some days I’m lucky and get a nap during the afternoon, but that won’t likely happen today as, being Saturday, there are children at home. All day. They don’t stop unless you’re throwing food at them, and even then it seems as though they just barely slow down. How can I be expected to exercise the level of intelligence of which I am capable if my brain is still half asleep?
Speaking of children, they seem to do early better than anyone. They hit the floor running the moment their little eyes pop open, especially on Saturdays when we would dearly like them to sleep a little later than 5:30. I’m convinced that they are able to get up so quickly and easily because their little brains are not yet full of enough information slowing their boot up every morning. They don’t care too much about the Chinese stock exchange, couldn’t care less what the price of oil is, and neither of the slackers are planning on voting, given they’re only 5 and 7. They care a little about the weather since that determines whether they can play outside. They care about what’s for breakfast and whether they can stream some mind-numbing drivel via Netflix. Their little brains boot up in .002 seconds because their operating system isn’t yet weighted down with garbage.
I remember my own father getting up this early, much to my mother’s frustration. He always said he enjoyed the peace and quiet and I can certainly appreciate that. The difference between he and I is that I can get up without disturbing anyone else in the house. Poppa had some difficulty with that quiet thing. Mother accused him of being too much like a bull in a china shop. By the time he finished making coffee, the rest of us had at least stirred.
If we are all very lucky, and it will take no small amount of good fortune, I will be able to share the results of today’s adventures with you. I expect you to feign appreciation if we do. After all, we’ve gone to all the trouble of getting up way too damn early in the morning; too early to be doing hair & makeup, too early to be having intelligent conversation, and too early to be taking pictures.
But here we are, the early birds. Those worms better be tasty.