"Y ou're probably asleep."
Now, whether you count the contraction as one word or two, I want to assure you - promise you - that those are three - or four - words you don't want to hear at 1:00 AM.
Not unless you aren't asleep.
Especially not when you are not where you are supposed to be at 1:00 AM. When this is the third time someone has woken you up. I mean, how the fuck do you respond to that?
Especially not when you are me - because as soon as I heard those words, I heard myself say, "Damn, a tautology...."
If you don't know what a tautology is, well, simply put, it is something like "A is A." Philosophically, the argument is, a tautology says nothing. Well, in Falcon's world, the opposite is true. It says everything. So, as soon as I recognized those three or four words as a tautology, all kinds of thoughts about what those words meant tautologically spread like wildfire through my brain. I tried to stop them, I did.
But, rather like peeing in the ocean, every attempt to stop them was futile and vain. So, even before the very brief conversation ended, I had this deep sense of doom. But, hope springs eternal, or so the illusion claims and I decided I would - somehow - fall asleep again.
And, absolutely most of all, not when you have to get up and head back to the airport in three hours.
I don't know how it works for you, but for me, there is that moment, infinitesimal though it may be, when, before responding to whatever disturbed my sleep, I feel my systems power on, and then, much like a computer executing POST (power on self-test) they begin reporting in. It as though I can hear this rather strange internal dialogue. "Big toe, right foot, reporting in...." Until somewhere, deep in the darkness of my mind, someone or something says, "All systems on-line and fully functioning."
Once that happens, unless I can literally put each system back off line, my nyght is over. If you think that's easy, it isn't. No matter how tired I am, that process takes at least an hour. Assuming the last and most resistant part of my body, my brain, chooses to cooperate. If you have even a passing knowledge of who I am, then you know that shutting my brain down so I can sleep is rather like turning a CPU (the central processing unit - or processor - in a computer) off one transistor at a time. Given the complex causal relationship of the neuro-transistors in my brain, there is no sequential way to do that. I mean, I can't say, "You, neuron number 3,274,125, off. Now." It's more like, "What the fuck is going on in my head?" And then, one process at a time, I have to turn them off, or suspend them. In some cases, there are nested processes. So, before I can turn off or suspend Process, I have to get to Process 1 and work my way down. Assuming, of course, I can even find Process 1...."

Read the rest of this interview in Volume 7 #1 of NyghtVision.