Tuesday, July 04, 2006

An Open Letter

Dearest Netherlands,

There are so many wonderful things about you: your English-speaking people, fascinating architecture, quiet canals, and superb public transportation. You do so many things well, it seems petty to focus so relentlessly on your flaws.

That said, your comprehensive assault on my ability to sleep cannot continue. I may be merely a visitor here, but I deserve a decent night's sleep. This may require painful changes, as your national strategies for reducing sleep are so multi-faceted and effective, like your salespeople and your military. (Ha ha, just kidding there.) But you seem so sincere in making visitors happy and profitable, so you probably have no idea what you are doing. Here are a few notes on sleep to serve both you and your people.

Beds. Despite all evidence from here, it is quite reasonable to spend more than 40 euros on a bed. Beds should not creak like a haunted house staircase every time you roll onto your back. It is also legal for beds to be higher than three inches from the ground. Some people even prefer not to have to crawl into their beds on their hands and knees.

A note on size: Adult people generally graduate from a twin bed after the age of 10 or so. Pushing two twin beds together does not constitute a "king-size" bed, as the king is likely to slide between them and flop helplessly onto the floor. This does not improve his sleep.

Mattresses. I'm sure you are unaware of this, but mattresses can, in fact, be thicker than two inches. I'm not sure what you're putting in there, but it should not be hay or anything that is hay-like in texture. In general, laying down on a mattress should not cause your partner to roll into you uncontrollably, and the mattress itself should be firmer than your average marshmellow.

Sheets and Fabrics. I must emphatically stress that linens which touch the human body should not be made from recycled sandpaper or any other industrial by-product. We find them itchy and uncomfortable, even if they are excellent for removing dead skin and lice.

Pillows. Your scheme to replace pillows with cheap sacks of flour is not fooling anyone.

. We wholeheartedly approve of your decision to keep the sun aloft until 11pm. This is a welcome addition for night owls such as myself. Having the sun rise at 5am is significantly less desirable, though. Have you considered moving further south or east?

As with my previous letters on train schedules and plumbing, these are all merely suggestions. But with a few simple changes, life can be happier for everyone, visitors and natives alike.



At 9:43 AM, Blogger Mike said...

May I be permitted to add a request to your open letter?

Dear Europe People,

If you are going to insist on having no paper towels in your bathroom, could you please then ensure that more than ten percent of your automated hand dryers actually function?

At 10:05 PM, Blogger Mike said...

Don't get me started about the plumbing.

I saw your blog... looking forward to reading it.


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