Five stupid things I’ve done while sleep deprived

A sleep deprived man holding his head in frustration at doing something stupid.

I’ve been sleep deprived for eight years and counting. I know I’ve mentioned that more than once, but us Brits like to point out minor hardships. On the whole, I’ve got used to getting by on a meagre amount of sleep.

The human ability to autopilot has carried me through plenty of times but, of course, there’s still human error every now and then. So, after a couple of recent acts of dopiness including slamming a gate on my own head, I thought it would be fun/harrowing to look at some of the stupid things I’ve done while sleep deprived.

Used the wrong toothpaste

I was particularly tired one day last week. So much so, that I ended up using the boys’ toothpaste. It tasted foul. It was like the moment in the film Amélie when the unpleasant greengrocer has his tube replaced by foot cream.

I was immediately struck by two thoughts. The first was that it may rejuvenate my teeth. It didn’t. The second was the realisation that I’ve probably used other family members’ bathroom products on numerous occasions and only noticed this once.

Moved jobs

Who would leave a well-paid job with a nice charity to join a results-driven digital agency? Me! I genuinely don’t know what I was thinking. I was getting two or three hours’ sleep a night tops at the time.

So learning the ropes in a new place was even harder. I instantly hated the job too. It just wasn’t me. Luckily, I ended up in another well-paid job with another nice charity soon afterwards. Phew!

Told off the wrong child

This obviously started once there were two kids on the scene. But it hasn’t stopped! I can tell all three of my children apart – except for when one of them has done something naughty.

Without fail, I always name one of the innocent parties. At least this shows that I don’t treat my sons and daughter differently though. Evidently, I view them as a non-gender-specific collective of mischief.

Estimated the size of a large domestic appliance

Only an idiot would order a large domestic appliance without checking measurements. To be fair, I checked that our fridge freezer would go through each individual door. I neglected to measure the crucial turning space outside one of them though.

To this day, I’m amazed both that we managed to get it down the narrow alley behind our house in under three hours and that my dad is still talking to me.

Turned up a day early

Remembering to go to parents evening is something we’re good at. Remembering the right day, however, is quite different. We once turned up a whole day early. We had even gone as far as organising for my parents to babysit.

The teacher in question was very understanding and saw us anyway. Plus I guess it’s better to be a day early than five minutes late.

Which stupid things have you done while sleep deprived?


  1. Nige

    Haha! This is brilliant mate, if I’m honest I have told off the wrong child constantly. Which I put down to age and losing my memory and possibly mind 🙂

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