It's after midnight. Unfortunately so. I am so tired. But as it often happens when I am just so tired, I fall asleep and then am awakened by something or other (I have four of those something or others, all asleep right now) and then I can't fall back asleep.
All those sleep advice columnists (they do exist right? Yes, if only as someone doing some side writing job for several beauty magazines) suggest that when you can't sleep you get up and do something for awhile, until you think you can go to sleep.
It's a nice idea. And here I am trying it, because the alternatives were either a) lay in bed trying to count sheep, but feel slightly overwhelmed instead, or b) fall asleep. Well, b) was taking it's own sweet time in getting here and a), while nice and all, was getting me nowhere.
The phrase that kept going through my head was "whistling in the dark." And attached to that was someone saying "Oh, that's just Charles Wallace's way of whistling in the dark." That someone would of course be Charles Wallace's sister, Meg. And Meg and Charles were the fabulous creation of Madeleine L'Engle, who passed away a few years ago, and whom I have never met, but am quite fond of.
There's just one thing. I have never been quite sure what whistling in the dark means. Although I am typing it out many times now, in this post.
And so, as that phrase whistling in the dark went through my head, along with the voice of my mother-in-law singing a song with the same phrase in it, I thought it would be a good, productive idea to get up in the middle of the night, turn on the computer, and look up the meaning of whistling in the dark. And so I did.
Do you want to know what it means?
Of course you do.
A definition appeared after googling it (ah. google as a verb) that I liked: To attempt to summon up one's courage or optimism in a difficult situation.
And I thought to myself, well what do you know. I may just be whistling in the dark after all.
There are worse ways to pass one's time.