On sleep, being gruntled, and love of trivia

RIP Alex Trebek

Wellthy adjective - characterized by focusing on good habits to make it easier to make healthy choices to have a balanced, healthy life that includes enjoying simple pleasures without guilt.

According to the Oura Ring blog The Pulse, Election Night 2020 was a terrible night for the collective sleep of the United States. According to anonymized data from tens of thousands of users across the US, the number of total hours of sleep lost was staggering.

138,833,045 hours of sleep lost

In the month prior to Election Night 2020, the average total sleep time was between 7 and 7.5 hours. On Election Night, the average total sleep time dropped to 6.5 hours.

Leading up to Election Day, I heard people mention canceling morning meetings the day after the election “since most people are going to be up very late.” Some people even took the day after Election Day off.

My question to the people who stayed up late, was it worth it?

How did I sleep on Election Night? Here are my numbers from the Oura Ring. By the way, a sleep score of 85 or above is considered a great night of sleep.

AZ did not change time on Sunday like the rest of the country, so effectively I lost an hour due to the adjustment to my client’s time. Despite that adjustment, I slept rather well.

There might be events or activities where losing sleep is worth it to you but choose these wisely. Sleep is valuable and should be protected. Good sleep is a required component to be wellthy.

“How are you?”

It’s a question that most of the time serves as mere polite conversation. In fact, some people who ask the question don’t even listen to the answer. I tested this theory with responses such as “Not good,” and “Could be better” and the response was as if I had said I was good.

I have a new response anytime someone asks me how I am.

“I’m gruntled.”

I’ve said that on a few conference calls and received some puzzled reactions and a few chuckles.

You may have heard the word disgruntled, which is usually used in the context of a disgruntled employee who is not happy or satisfied.

According to the Barnhart Concise Dictionary of Etymology, disgruntle showed up in 1682 from dis- entirely, very + gruntle (obsolete form to grunt, grumble). The word grunt dates back before 1250 to grunten, from the Old English grunnettan, from grunian to grunt and possibly a cognate with Old High German grunnizōn to grunt (modern German grunzen).

According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the prefix dis- often means “to do the opposite of”, so people might naturally assume that if there is a disgruntle, there must have first been a gruntle with exactly the opposite meaning. But dis- doesn’t always work that way; in some rare cases, it functions as an intensifier. In the 1920s, a writer humorously used gruntle to mean “to make happy” as an antonym of disgruntle and it stuck.

The official definition of gruntled, which is considered informal and often humorous, is in good humor, happy, or content.

Use the word gruntled the next time someone asks how you are, but only if you mean it.

A few weeks ago, I added a trivia contest to provide a break for our team to have some fun. Every Monday, the hardest task of the day is coming up with trivia questions for my weekly team meeting.

Finding the best trivia questions is not as easy as it seems. You have to consider the audience as well as the format. We are all on a conference call, and it’s not easy to hear everyone clearly so answers must be typed in a Teams chat. Initially, I only accepted the first correct answer, but I thought this was unfair to people who were a millisecond slow with correct answers. I now accept the first 2 or 3 correct answers, but there also needs to be a time limit. After all, this is a trivia contest and not a “how-fast-can-you-Google contest.”

I’ve loved trivia ever since I was a kid, and I can credit one show—Jeopardy! This show is famous for answers in the form of questions, and of course, the longstanding host Alex Trebek. Alex started hosting Jeopardy! in 1984. I have a distinct memory of watching Jeopardy! while I was loosening one of my primary teeth, which eventually popped out during Wheel of Fortune that same evening.

In March of 2019, Alex announced that he was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer. He was upbeat and demonstrated a fighting spirit and some humor.

On November 11, 2019, during a final Jeopardy round of the Tournament of Champions, a contestant responded with “What is we ❤️ you, Alex!” Alex read the response and clearly got emotional, but ever the pro, he finished out the episode.

In March of 2020, Alex provided an update one year after his diagnosis. He said that the one-year survival rate for Stage 4 pancreatic cancer is 18%, and he was happy to announce that he made it one year. “If we take it one day at a time, with a positive attitude, anything is possible.”

Alex continued taping Jeopardy! through 2020. Sadly, yesterday it was announced that Alex finally lost his 18-month battle with cancer at the age of 80. Alex’s final episode hosting Jeopardy! is scheduled to air Christmas Day 2020.

On behalf of trivia buffs everywhere, thank you to Alex for so many years of questions asked and answered. Alex Trebek was a true professional who showed us what courage and faith look like in the face of adversity. You’ll be missed!

On Good Morning America when asked if Alex is prepared for his final show: “I would tell the director, time the show down to leave me 30 seconds at the end. That’s all I want. I will say my goodbyes. I will tell people don’t ask me who’s gonna replace me because I have no say in that whatsoever. But I’m sure that if you give them the same love and attention and respect that you have shown me for the past 30 however-many years, then they will be a success and the show will continue being a success. Until we meet again, God bless you and goodbye.

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