This week I discovered TikTok’s 5-9 o’clock club. People who cram an inordinate amount of activity into their day before stepping into the corporate world. That time is sacred, I’ve learned, when the “real you” is most visible.
Most of the people who are part of this club stick to a well-worn pattern; enjoy yoga in the living room; watch the sunrise; drink green mud juice; meditate; cleaning the house from head to toe; Diary; engage in a tedious cleansing and makeup routine; and then go out the door.
I shrieked when I stumbled upon this fad because it turns out I’m already a fully paid up (involuntary) member. And for once, it’s refreshing to be part of a club instead of being kicked out of one.
See, I’m blessed with two young children who don’t sleep. The older one does not sleep in the evenings, and the younger one prefers to wake up all night and get up at 5 a.m.
This uniquely diametrically opposed sleep cycle means I’m, to use the technical term, “fucked.” I consider it a golden luxury when we have a continuous three-hour drive at night and are used to getting up before dawn.
But what I saw on the internet confused me. Those hyper productive shifts bore no resemblance to mine. So, to balance, here’s what the forced 5-9 o’clock club looks like.
You wake up confused. Why is someone yelling in your face? What is that smell? Why is it so dark outside? Didn’t you just climb into bed 30 seconds ago? Oh no, it’s 5am and you need to start your day now; at a time when all non-nocturnal animals are still asleep in their respective sets, nests, and burrows.
You go downstairs, it’s freezing, so you and your kid build a makeshift duvet fort on the floor. There’s nothing on TV so you have to watch Netflix but the wifi is gone so have your kid climb on top and poke your eyes.
You go to clean the kitchen but realize that cleaning is ultimately a pointless and Sisyphean task, so cut the dirt. You’re having an existential crisis over an email you forgot to reply to six months ago. You eat a whole pack of Jaffa Cakes. You drink a mug of tea.
You look at the clock, it’s 5:10 am. You cry. You miss the sunrise because you don’t care about the sunrise – you have to dress a kid who decided pants are the enemy.
The minutes pass and then there is hectic activity when the other child wakes up. You take her to school, come home and realize you haven’t brushed your teeth or showered and you have four minutes to start your work day. You eat another pack of Jaffa cakes to keep your energy levels up.
The only one, and I really mean that, the only The good thing about getting up so early is hearing rising time and knowing it’s your partner’s turn to get up tomorrow.
According to online site Bustle, the 5-9am trend has caught on online because “it combines several genres of viral videos — dinner inspiration, skincare routines, kitchen organization, etc., all in one compiled video clip.”
I think that’s partly because we live in a society that’s fixated on sleep, but at the same time distrusts it.
The sleep tech industry is a billion dollar industry; There are spooning robots, cuddle pillows, Jamie Dornan can read you bedtime stories while you lie under a weighted blanket. Obviously not the real Jamie Dornan – it’s an app, but you get the gist.
At the same time, it also means getting up and moving, every second counts. World leaders only need four hours of sleep, so what’s your excuse, lazy bastard? It’s 5:01 am! Be productive now!
But as a perpetually sleep-deprived parent, I’m here to tell you not to sign up for the 5 o’clock club. It’s huhu, it’s a scam. Nobody has to get up at this time.
If you accidentally wake up at 5am, thank your stars for not having to grope down the stairs into a freezing cold living room. No cocoa ceremony or journaling session gets better than snuggling into a cocoon of feathers and closing your eyes.
No more Mr Wife Guy
Looks like the golden age of the wife man may be drawing to a close. If you don’t know exactly what a wife guy is, let me enlighten you. It’s noisy New York Times, an ethnographic group of men who have married a woman and “this is now his personality – maybe even his job”. He is a mutation of the Instagram husband but is no longer behind the scenes, they are a brand in their own right.
You will have met this man. The archetypal Wife Guy posts videos on TikTok acknowledging he’s sexually attracted to his wife, like it’s exemplary behavior worthy of a standing ovation or a plaque to display on his mantelpiece. The problem with the Wife Guy is this – it hasn’t proven to be all that sustainable.
The US comedian John Mulaney was one of the most well-known Wife Guys. He once explained his reluctance to have children: “I love my wife and spend so much time with her… our relationship is so wonderful. It’s just something I don’t want to change.” But then he left his wife and had a baby with Olivia Munn.
Maroon 5 singer Adam Levine was devoted to his wife but has now been caught sending embarrassing sexts to models. In fact now vanity fair, Jezebel and Buzzfeed have all declared that it is no longer Mr Wife Guy. The era is over. Buzzfeed said the legacy Ms Guy left proves “no good comes from monetizing your role as a patriarchal monogamy maker — especially when you can’t even handle the monogamy part.”
Screaming is nothing to scream about
For years, screaming into a pillow was considered a healthy way to relieve the stress of the day. In fact, screamatoriums even popped up in Britain – a safe place to scream blue murder. It was based on the idea that repressed childhood trauma is at the root of all neurosis and that cat squeals can help ease the pain.
However, it has now been found that there is absolutely no scientific evidence for this. None at all. That might be discouraging if you were a fan, but it will likely be good news for your neighbors.
https://www.independent.ie/life/family/parenting/the-reality-of-the-tiktok-5am-9am-club-why-is-someone-screaming-in-my-face-42037140.html The reality of the 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. TikTok club: ‘Why is someone yelling in my face?’