We've all done embarrassing things while sleeping. Maybe you drank too much Tang and wet the bed. Maybe you had to share a sleeping bag with grandma and she woke you up because you had a boner--we've all been there.
But trust us, it can get way, way worse than that. There are records of people who, in their sleep...
One night, London police were called about a possible suicide attempt on the counterweight of a crane at a construction project, where a young girl was perched precariously 130 feet in the air. So while helpful passersby probably shouted words of encouragement or took bets on how big the splat would be, a fireman climbed the crane to try to talk her down, only to find her sleeping.
That's right, the 15-year-old girl was sleepwalking so hard she climbed a fucking crane. Anyone who's ever had a flying dream knows that your unconscious mind sometimes gets sick of being trapped on this shithole your waking mind calls the ground. Her mind just decided to do something about it. Unfortunately, when the firefighter found her, she'd sleepwalked out onto a narrow beam and was in danger of having history's most realistic "falling dream" followed immediately by the much less common "having your body collected with a huge cartoon spatula dream."
Not wanting to alarm her and make her fall, the fireman did what any responsible public servant would and went through her personal belongings. He found her cell phone and gave her folks a call. Together, they hatched a plan to get the girl to safety. The fire fighter hung up and the parents called back, waking her up.
The only recorded instance of positive parental nagging.
Apparently the girl was unlike most teenagers, and did not have an indignation-seizure at the sight of a call from her parents. Two and a half hours later, she'd safely ridden a hydraulic lift back to the ground. Her parents noted to the press that she had a long history of sleepwalking and in their dry British wit wondered aloud what she'd climb up next. At which point some crude public servant nearby probably quipped, "Probably up some strange gentleman's dick, old chap!"
He of course would be referring to actual cases where sleepwalkers...
In Australia, a middle-aged woman had a quirky habit. She would wake up in the middle of the night, leave her house and fuck various strangers. This proved once again that a woman doesn't even have to be conscious to pick up dudes.
After months of her husband waking up to find their home littered with used condoms (and once finding his snoring spouse being actively nailed by a stranger) the wife and the world's most trusting spouse decided to get medical help.
Doctors were no doubt reluctant to believe the story, most likely thinking instead that the husband was suffering from one of the world's worst cases of gullible retardation. But the couple's anxiety over the incidents paired with a detailed examination proved that, sure enough, her actions were completely involuntary and a strange mixture of hot and creepy.
Hot and creepy, just like Fairuza Balk.
The condition, called Sleep Sex because doctors aren't the most creative people in the world, is caused by an REM behavioral disorder. The part of your mind that is supposed to stop you from moving when you're dreaming doesn't kick in, thus allowing you to actually act out your dreams.
Why that seems to only manifest itself in the form of porking strangers is anyone's guess. Though it presumably is easier to act out that kind of dream as opposed to the one where you and Urkel team up for a kung fu battle with Satan.
On a frigid Denver night in 2003, a quiet and unassuming nurse took an Ambien and went to bed. And then, shit got real.While still asleep, she got up, slugged down half a bottle of wine and got into her car only wearing a nightshirt in 20 degree weather. Drunken, sleep driving nurses are hardcore.
Because traffic rules are different when you're both drunk and asleep, she wrecked her car at an intersection, figured this was now the bathroom and popped a squat on the road. Two fully awake police officers, unaware of the finer points of drunken sleep pissing, came to arrest her, so she assaulted them because fuck those guys.
Prosecutors let her plead to just a reckless driving charge, though even that seems unfair if she was unconscious the whole time. It's almost like they were unclear as to exactly what parts of the ordeal the woman was asleep for, versus the parts where she was awake and just decided to go with the flow.
Less pissy but equally angry at the waking world was British house painter Sean Joyce, who, by the way, also took an Ambien before snoozing on a flight from Charlotte, NC to London.
Drowning his sorrows for being British, Joyce then drank two glasses of wine before falling asleep. This is the point in the story where you can assume things turned out poorly. Joyce jumped out of his seat, tore off his shirt like The Hulk and stormed around the plane cabin threatening to kill himself and other passengers. Joyce claimed he remembered none of it, and got off with five days time served.
When Anna Ryan inexplicably gained 60 pounds, she sought medical help. Her doctor presumably checked to make sure she hadn't taken up competitive eating--or had maybe been substituting bacon for water in most of her recipes--before finally getting the idea to set up a sleep study.
A disorder presumably responsible for Kevin Federline's current condition.
Ryan was surprised to learn she was eating while asleep, but not in the midnight snack sort of way. She actually got up in the middle of the night, grabbed a box of Little Debbies and, one by one, ate every single chocolaty, cream-filled snack cake right there in her bed, all while still asleep. If her dreams involved hot dogs on a conveyor belt we'll never know.
The condition is cleverly called "sleep eating" and it's more common in women than men--presumably because if a guy subconsciously wants to eat a whole box of Little Debbies during the day, he doesn't repress it. He just shrugs and starts unwrapping that shit.
Luckily for those who unknowingly whip up a fondue at 3am and then promptly consume it while muttering about how they're at work without pants, medication is available to sleep eaters. There are also nutritional exercises which, without looking into it any further, we figure involve squat thrusts while making sandwiches.
Though it seems like all of that is a lot of trouble when a simple refrigerator alarm would do the trick.