INDIGNITY VOL. 3, NO. 98: Early to rise.


INDIGNITY VOL. 3, NO. 98: Early to rise.

MR WRONG: 4 a.m. Is the Worst Time to Be Awake

I DON’T KNOW about you—and how could I—but I’m not what people would call a Morning Person. I mean, the only reason I ever see the Sun rise is because I’ve been up all night howling at the moon. Arroo!

Today, for instance, I drove my wife to the airport so she could travel and go hang out with friends on a lake in one of those squareish-shaped states. It was a 6 a.m. flight, so we had to get to the goddamn airport by no later than 5 fuckin’ a.m. o’clock in the morning, which meant I hadda get up at Zero-Four-Hundred hours, plus tax, urfh!

I think 4 o’clock in the morning is the worst time. Because I live in it, it is particularly terrible, I think, here in the Eastern Time Zone, which right now is in the Standard or Daylight, I can never fucking remember. Anyway, give or take that Saved hour, it’s crappy! It’s still fucking dark! I guess it is the cliché before the Dawn? Why am I Rising and Shining? I’m supposed to be in The Arms of Morpheus! I swear it makes me sick to have to experience Life this fucking early in the morning. I should be down deep, with no promises to keep, and hours to go, full of sleep!

My eyeballs and brain don’t even line up for proper communication that early in the morning! It’s double-dark, on account of it is dark outside and also dark inside my castle, where all light sources have been suppressed to create an environment conducive to slumber, so when I need to become Awake at 4 a.m., I go into the bathroom to splash water on my face and clean my teeth so I can snap outta Sleep Mode, there’s that moment when I hit the light switch and AIEEE! MY EYES! IT BURNS!!! All the Rods in my peepers are melting away!!! My Night Vision is gone! Aaaagh!

However, once all the Pain of rejoining Consciousness has faded, I gotta admit there are some pleasant aspects of 4 o’clock in the fuckin’ morning. Don’t get it twisted, overall it’s unacceptable, Do Not Want, but it’s a very calm world at 4 fucking a.m. Sometimes there are a few worm-getting Early Birds out there, singing in the dark. Driving around, there’s practically no traffic, so you get from point A to point B in a weirdly short amount of time, and the streets in my city, Baltimore, MD, are serene, mostly, and look like a movie set ready for action.

None of that shit makes being awake at 4 o’clock in the morning worth it, though. If I had a job—disclosure: I do not have a Job—that required me to be awake at 4 a.m. in the morning, well then of course I would get acclimated to the schedule, but I wouldn’t like it! I’d try real hard to get a different job, unless it was my Lifestyle, like being a Farmer, or a Morning Television presenter.

Personally, my Ideal schedule would be to go to bed at 2 a.m. and rise at 10 a.m., but nobody in the Eastern Time Zone seems to agree with me. Anyway, I got up early this morning and I got a column out of it. Time for a nap!

SHAMELESS SELF-PROMOTION DEP’T.: This cuts into my nap time, and I am totally slipping this into today’s Mr. Wrongspace to fluff my Word Count, but Gentle Reader, if you are any kind of aficionado of the Mr. Wrong Column, kindly consider visiting SHOPULA and purchasing a copy or three of HMM WEEKLY MINI-ZINE, Subject: GAME SHOW. It is my account of the Total Experience of a Journey Into Television, specifically the game show Who Wants to Be A Millionaire, question mark! This account is expanded from the original published account found here and features other viewpoints of the Experience, plus previously unreleased images. The Double-Sawbuck you drop on this offering will help fund The Brick House collective, a Publishing Concern featuring a globally diverse set of publishers that does not want their Existence to depend on advertising and scuzzo-greedball billionaires. There are also many other publications and products you may find of interest, and again, this all goes to help the Brick House collective be an independent thing and not take no shit from nobody. Thank you.


New York City, June 14, 2023

★★★★ The forgotten water bottle sweated in the hand all the way to the subway platform, where the uptown train carrying the sixth-grader to Field Day was just pulling out, and all the way back home. The high cirrus at quarter to eight became a white and lumpy overcast by 10. A short train ride later, it had smoothed out and darkened to gray. By one o'clock, the radar showed big storms moving south to north just west of Manhattan, with smaller storms bracketing the island just to the east. The brackets finally closed, but it all passed quickly and full sun came back, even as the radar showed another line of storms creeping in. Those second storms came pouring down a few hours later, through clear sunshine, so that drops glittered coming off the scaffolding. Crisp white cumulus reared up behind the already retreating gray. It was over too fast to hunt down any rainbows.


Indignity Morning Podcast No. 89: One more difference.

Tom Scocca • Jun 15, 2023

Listen now (3 min) | The Indignity Morning Podcast is also available via the Apple and Spotify platforms.

Read full story →


WE PRESENT INSTRUCTIONS for the assembly of select sandwiches from Recipes Tried and True, compiled by Freda R. Lavine, Yonkers, NY, published in 1922, found in the public domain and available at for the delectation of all.

Remove bones of one dozen anchovies, cream three hardboiled eggs with two tablespoonfuls sweet butter; add a few grains of cayenne pepper, mix all together. Use on very thin slices of buttered white bread.

Cream two tablespoonfuls butter, add one-fourth cup grated American cheese, one teaspoonful vinegar, salt, paprika, mustard, and anchovy essence. Spread between thin slices of bread.

Stone and chop olives fine and mix with cream cheese, adding sweet cream to moisten. Salt and pepper to taste.

Take equal quantities of egg yolks and sardines, the latter drained, skinned and boned. Season with salt, cayenne pepper and mustard. Rub until smooth and add lemon juice or olive oil to make a paste. Spread between slices of buttered bread or on fresh wafers, or use mayonnaise in place of lemon juice and other seasoning.

Chop chicken through chopper, mix with plenty mayonnaise, pepper, and salt and spread on bread. Smoked tongue may be used the same way.

If you decide to prepare and attempt to enjoy a sandwich inspired by this offering, kindly send a picture to us at


Thanks for reading INDIGNITY, a general-interest publication for a discerning and self-selected audience. We depend on your support!