Dec 1, 2011
Lorna Gravoso

It Is The Early Worm That Gets Caught

I have a little problem with the popular saying regarding the early bird getting the worm. My girl friend rephrased it as, it’s the early worm that gets caught. First and foremost, is that baiting enough to encourage one to make do with less sleep? Is it sufficient reward as you wake up bleary-eyed, wondering if it was worth the effort of hauling yourself out of bed merely to win some dubious brownie points?

More often than not you find yourself shortchanged. However much I may disagree over the advantages of being an early bird, I think I was born with a premature sense of timing, always ready well before time and then having to endure the long wait for others who are time-challenged. I have tried my best to cure myself of this habit but it’s too deeply ingrained. My body clock insists on never letting me down.

One hears about the virtues of early to bed and early to rise which supposedly inculcate wisdom and good health. I beg to differ. The only quality I have seen emerge from indulging in such behavior is grumpiness and a disinclination to converse in anything but grunts. Waking up bright-eyed and bushy-tailed is obviously too much to ask for.

So, you get up early and try to convince yourself that the long day stretching before you is rich with diverse possibilities.

From my long years of experience in this regard, I can assure you that contemplation of all that is in store for you the unwelcome chores that lie ahead, the bumper to bumper traffic is like viewing a bleak landscape. And what can be more irritating than being wide awake while everyone else is in deep slumber, with no intention of sharing their precious waking hours with you?

This habit also robbed me of a chance of making easy money. Arriving at Heathrow airport in the early hours one day last year I was met by an apologetic man at the check-in counter who informed me that they were overbooked and would I mind taking the next flight the following day. About to burst a blood vessel at the thought of the mad dash to the airport after approximately two hours of sleep, my outburst was stopped short by his next words. They were music to my ears.

He told me that if I were willing, the airline would pay me a handsome sum to compensate for the inconvenience.

My friend who had driven me there was waiting still. She told me to grab the offer. So that’s what I did.

As I walked away, he told me not to leave just yet but to wait till 9am and check just in case there was a no-show. Flushed with success, I told my friend that I would treat her to dinner and she could name the restaurant.

In this expansive mood, we made our way to the coffee shop where I insisted on paying.

As we talked and laughed, I was aware of the clock ticking away.
As the hour neared nine, I told my companion it was time to go back to check. She told me not to be in such a hurry. But was I going to listen to sage advice?

Oh, no. That cursed sense of punctuality reared its ugly head and off I rushed to the counter.

Where I was told I could proceed to board the flight and that they would fast-track me!



  • i am not an early riser!! but when i have a commitment in the day i will wake up even if i want to sleep…..

  • It’s the early worm that gets caught.

    Not only is that true but it is also a great little saying. I will have to remember it.

    I like your stories.

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