I have a sleep disorder. It’s called Mrs Grump. My sleep is regularly disrupted because of Mrs Grump. This is because Mrs Grump has a snoring problem. A snoring problem because the snore comes from me, which wakes her up and sometimes, understandably out of frustration, she lashes out. The other day she kicked me somewhere that’s never seen daylight. I nearly ended up through the headboard.
I have written about my unusual snore previously, which can be read here.
I don’t snore in the conventional way. You know me, I like to go against the grain. It’s more of a click than a snore. Clicking like a broken clock followed by the swift thud of an impact, a groan and some remnants of a half asleep apology from me.
I thought I had found a solution in the form of nasal strips. Little sticky strips that are supposed to work by pulling your nostrils slightly wider than usual, to increase the airflow and alleviate the snore.
I’m not convinced it works. I’ve got bruises to prove it. Although the size and number of bruises increased when I stopped wearing nasal strips for a week. So they obviously mitigate personal injury.
But I thought I needed to take more action. There must be something more. Removing the little punchbag at the back of my throat seemed a little excessive so I searched the net. There I found the cure.
A snore strap.
A snore strap is advertised as a strap you wrap around your face so it keeps your jaw shut. If your jaw is shut, you can’t snore or click. This would allow my bruises to heal. I bought one off the Internet.
Now when it came, I admit it didn’t seem to be as enjoyable to wear as the guy in the sales photo who looked like he was the happiest sleeping man in the world. But then again, maybe he was. Who knows what kind of sudden beatings he’d endured from his lady. After all, I’ve found that for the petite loveliness that she is (Yes she reads these posts), Mrs Grump’s got quite a shove on her.
I tried it on. I took a picture. I look like I’ve had some sort of accident.
As you can see, I’ve blanked out my eyes so you don’t recognise me in the street. It’s exactly the same thing they do to SAS operatives in books to maintain their anonymity.
I’m sure you will agree, it’s not exactly going to get Mrs Grump in the mood for love. But on the bright side, with a mouth held shut, you can’t breathe any “Morning Breath” onto your loved one can you?
I tried it for one night. I think it lasted an hour before I threw it across the room. I was too hot and it was pulling my jaw slightly forward. Although credit where it’s due, I didn’t open my mouth and snore or click but I wasn’t keen on waking up in the morning with a severe underbite.
I tried it for a second time and I think it lasted a bit longer before I was too hot and again threw it across the room.
But I’d spent money on this thing and I wanted to be sure that I hadn’t wasted it. Damn it, I was going to give it one more try. So in a third attempt, I wrapped my snore strap across my face and went to sleep.
I slept all night. Like a baby. A baby with a ginger beard.
I woke up the following morning feeling great. No sudden awakenings in the night. Mrs Grump had enjoyed a peaceful night’s sleep.
If anything I had slept too well. So well, that I was finding it really difficult to get out of bed and was running a bit behind schedule. Surprising really because the call of the insurance industry is so strong.
I got out of bed and removed my snore trap and as I rubbed my face to try to wake myself up, I felt deep indentations in my skin. I traced these depressions and followed them in a continuous line around my entire head. BOTH of them. I now had two deep lines indented not only into my face but also around the top of my head.
Sometimes you get the odd little crease in your face from a pillow. In half an hour it’s gone. But not these. These were so deep that you could have ran a bobsleigh down them. These would not return to normal in half an hour.
I’m not wearing sunglasses. I’m protecting my anonymity, the SAS way.
What to do? I was already running behind schedule. I had to get a wriggle on and hope for the best. But then it occurred to me. What do I look like? Well of course I look like a man who had been wearing a snore strap too tightly. But if you talk to someone about a snore strap, the chances are that they’re going to question what it is. It’s not something that you see regularly whilst picking up your shopping from Tesco or Morrisons.
But thanks to a popular Quentin Tarantino film from the 90’s something was brought to the forefront of society’s consciousness. Something that is worn in a similar fashion to the snore strap.
Thanks to Pulp Fiction, a film seen literally by millions of people, I could easily be mistook for wearing a Gimp Ball.
I’m not the kind of guy to wear a Gimp Ball. Really not my thing. I’m old school. It’s not experimenting unless there’s an initial hypothesis and a Bunsen burner. Maybe even some litmus paper.
So I’m on the train, enjoying my usual commute to work and trying not to get coughed on. I’m sitting there with cap on, collars as high up as they can go and my eyes darting from left to right to see if any other passengers had noticed the lines on my face. I probably looked very shifty. I’m surprised I wasn’t arrested under suspicion of something. If anyone were to give me a curious look, I was ready. Ready to shout, “This is not from a Gimp Ball! Please avert your eyes for I am not a hideous perverted creature like a BBC TV presenter from the 70’s! I click in my sleep!”
I don’t think any commuters noticed. When I arrived at work, I had to act as if everything was normal. Even though my head had to become fully exposed. But luckily it had started to fade a bit. If there’s one thing I do not need at work, it’s some rumour that I like to while away the evening hours partaking in a bit of gimping.