Slumber party

Michael is having his first sleepover at our house tonight. As I type, he and his friend are trying to stay awake by watching "Phineas and Ferb" on Netflix.

As I type, Ben is at a friend's house for his first sleepover. The two friends are brothers, so we did a prisoner exchange with Ben at their house and Michael's friend here. I'm hoping that as I type, Ben is at least asleep.

I remember my first sleepover, which never made it past 10:30. It was at my neighbor George's house when I was maybe 7, and I got freaked out and went home. Days before I turned 9, I enjoyed my first successful sleepover at my friend Chris' house for his birthday. It was a Friday night, and we ate pizza and watched TV ("The Lords of Flatbush" on Ch. 2 was the late show). The deal was when one person wanted to go to bed, the rest of us had to, and my friends lobbied hard for me to stay awake. In 1979, before Chicagoans had cable, there wasn't much on after midnight, but my friends managed to find something on PBS -- a rock band all dressed as robots. It was weird, so I turned in while my friends defied the directive and stayed up. I didn't have a sleeping bag, so I was just on the carpet with a blanket near the desk in Chris' small bedroom. I can still remember the nightlight shining from under the desk as I tried to fall asleep and not think about that I wasn't at home.

Chris would invite us over for a sleepover a couple times a year, and they were always fun. No giddiness or Truth or Dare like a girls' slumber party, but mostly board games, video games and TV (much like Michael's was tonight). WGN began showing movies all night, and to our amazement, on consecutive sleepovers, months apart, we watched the same World War II movie on Ch. 9.

As I type this, Michael's friend just let me know he couldn't fall asleep (Michael was almost out). I put a movie on for him, told him to get comfortable, relax and watch the movie, and in no time he'll fall asleep. I guess sleepover anxiety hasn't changed in 30 years.


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