0784: "Falling Asleep"

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby gunnar » Wed Aug 25, 2010 1:02 pm UTC

Am I the only one that interprets it like this:
He is happy to go to sleep because that's the only time he is away from her?

Makes most of the comments of "get out of my life Randall" kinda weird ;-)

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Ferahgo » Wed Aug 25, 2010 1:09 pm UTC

Mazuku wrote:There is no spooning.


It's comments like this that make me love this forum.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Sprocket » Wed Aug 25, 2010 1:12 pm UTC

.cheeseofdoom. wrote:Randall went "A Softer World" on us.
This.

Man, whatever happened to "I hope you're not afraid, wherever you are. You don't need to be. I'm not. I will find you."?
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Karilyn » Wed Aug 25, 2010 1:13 pm UTC

gunnar wrote:Am I the only one that interprets it like this:
He is happy to go to sleep because that's the only time he is away from her?

Makes most of the comments of "get out of my life Randall" kinda weird ;-)

I thought that was what Randall meant. And I assumed the "get out of my life people" in this case were just joking around.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby RogueCynic » Wed Aug 25, 2010 1:54 pm UTC

richardr wrote:
I notice that the man is sleeping on the left hand side of the bed, which is relatively unusual. Is Randall by any chance left handed?


Do you have the references to support this - or is personal research as yet unpublished?
If the latter, then I'll add a data point that I'm right handed, but sleep on the left side. :-)
I'm ambidextrous. Does that explain why I sleep in the middle of the bed? I didn't get the joke.
[edit:]I just reread the alt-text. For some reason I thought it said uninteresting dreams. I still don't get the comic but I think it would be creepy if they had intersecting dreams. Didn't Randall do a lack of sleep comic last week? Maybe the lack of sleep was due to intersecting dreams and they finally disconnected the psychic link.
Last edited by RogueCynic on Wed Aug 25, 2010 8:09 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Majuba » Wed Aug 25, 2010 2:02 pm UTC

Interesting - I took the whole thing as "you let me relax and let go of all the anxiousness in life". A peaceful sentiment.

After reading all this, I've no idea now, and have no clue about the alt-text.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Vnend » Wed Aug 25, 2010 2:25 pm UTC

On first reading, I thought that the view that Majuba took on the comic was what Randell had intended, but that the last panel's text had been mis-phrased in a way that gave it a darker reading.

Then I noted the color of the bedspread. In human (or, at least, western-European) color lexicon for art and movies, alarm and unease can be both indicated by the artist and induced in a viewer by the use of yellow/orange/red hues. If this is so, then the choice, conscious or not, by Randell to use red for the bedspread/blanket would indicate that the darker take on the final line is the correct one. :shock:

Add in the alt-text, which is counter to most expectations (where having your loved one show up in your dreams, assuming they aren't nightmares, is considered desirable) and I have to conclude that my initial take on the comic was wrong, and Randell intended the nearly-sappy setup followed by the dark conclusion. Brrr...

As far as sleeping habits, when I was younger I tended to migrate toward the right hand side of the bed. This isn't a problem when unless you have to share the bed with someone on a school trip... Fortunately my bedmate was pretty prosaic about it, and simply got up and moved around to the other side when I started encroaching. These days it doesn't seem to matter much to my body or subconscious (whichever it is that decides which is correct) and my wife and I have swapped which side was 'normal' for us occasionally, and it is variable on trips. mu.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby neoliminal » Wed Aug 25, 2010 2:37 pm UTC

This morning a was laying next to my wife and on the other side of her was our 2 year old. She woke up in a huff and said I was smothering her. Jumped out of bed. My son woke and followed her. There I was alone in bed.

Sigh.

I guess the pillow was thick enough.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby picnic_crossfire » Wed Aug 25, 2010 2:38 pm UTC

gunnar wrote:Am I the only one that interprets it like this:
He is happy to go to sleep because that's the only time he is away from her?

Makes most of the comments of "get out of my life Randall" kinda weird ;-)

I think it's definitely this. The incentive he has to escape the world is augmented by her existence in it. Another Joey Comeau-esque comic in not that long. (http://xkcd.com/770/)

PS Does she have fingers?!?! What the fuck is this I don't even
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby SecondTalon » Wed Aug 25, 2010 3:14 pm UTC

Sprocket wrote:
.cheeseofdoom. wrote:Randall went "A Softer World" on us.
This.

Man, whatever happened to "I hope you're not afraid, wherever you are. You don't need to be. I'm not. I will find you."?

"I found you.

...

Now what?"


picnic_crossfire wrote:PS Does she have fingers?!?! What the fuck is this I don't even

It's the creases and folds of the pillowcase as she's grabbing it in her sleep.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby SirMustapha » Wed Aug 25, 2010 3:26 pm UTC

Randall got dumped. Again.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Mr. Burke » Wed Aug 25, 2010 3:29 pm UTC

Kranerian wrote:
XbHW_TestEngr wrote:OK, fourth panel ... what is the spot between the pillows?
Did someone barf?
Slobber residue?
Moon beams?

Lack of shadow.

You mean, light?

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby picnic_crossfire » Wed Aug 25, 2010 3:30 pm UTC

SecondTalon wrote:
picnic_crossfire wrote:PS Does she have fingers?!?! What the fuck is this I don't even

It's the creases and folds of the pillowcase as she's grabbing it in her sleep.

Oh. Needless to say, I was flipping my shit over here, but never mind.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby LSN » Wed Aug 25, 2010 3:40 pm UTC

unpredictable wrote:Leaving the world behind ... and his girlfriend is his world...he's leaving her behind and going to sleep :D


OOHHHH

That makes it much funnier...

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby SpringLoaded12 » Wed Aug 25, 2010 3:45 pm UTC

Oooh, shading.

This reminds me of an older comic, can't remember what number or what it was called, in which a man is narrating as he walks through the desert. (?) He talks about how, despite walking 1000 miles or some such amount, he hasn't forgotten a girl's face or his experiences with her. He notes his disappointment and decides to keep walking.

I approve the classic resemblance, though today it is without nostalgia. We need a nostalgia comic, if it is possible; that would be pretty cool.

SirMustapha wrote:Randall got dumped. Again.

:( Possible.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Thisisnotausername » Wed Aug 25, 2010 4:04 pm UTC

Get out of my head, Randall!

Spoiler:
...and into my bed.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby big boss » Wed Aug 25, 2010 4:08 pm UTC

This reminds me of his older more profound comics.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Arancaytar » Wed Aug 25, 2010 4:33 pm UTC

SirMustapha wrote:Randall got dumped. Again.


After making fun of his girlfriend's driving directions.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby solobutterfly » Wed Aug 25, 2010 4:58 pm UTC

Regarding the comic, so bittersweet.

SirMustapha wrote:
Randall got dumped. Again.

If anything, based on the comic I would say he's the one who wishes to end the relationship but finds himself unable to.

Regarding some of the discussion, compiling data on which side of the bed people sleep on has always been something I've wanted to do. I imagine some kind of graph where people can check off their gender, sexuality, side of the bed, location of the bed (as in against a wall or centered), sleeping position in relation to wall and door, and perhaps AC vent and Television to see if other furniture factors in to decisions. I keep hoping I can find some sort of reason to make it grant worthy, but if someone had the right form set up, it could be easily executed online. I am not that person though. Perhaps Randall (or a curious forum reader) will create a study for us similar to the color one?

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Dustin » Wed Aug 25, 2010 5:23 pm UTC

Hasn't he done this kind of comic a bit by now?

"I'll set up this romantic/tragic line of thought, then I'll undercut it with something allegedly lewd or subtly hostile."
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Adaro » Wed Aug 25, 2010 5:24 pm UTC

At first I was like 'dawwwwwww' and then half a second later it hit me.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby EthErealist » Wed Aug 25, 2010 6:10 pm UTC

Am I really the only one who read it saying through panels 1 - 3 "Oh that's really sweet"...

...then when getting to panel 4 going "HAHAHA, BURN!"

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby dp2 » Wed Aug 25, 2010 6:28 pm UTC

gunnar wrote:Am I the only one that interprets it like this:
He is happy to go to sleep because that's the only time he is away from her?

Makes most of the comments of "get out of my life Randall" kinda weird ;-)

Like people who hear The Police's "Every Breath You Take" or Sarah Maclachlan's "Possession" and say "That is so me!"

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Raenil » Wed Aug 25, 2010 6:51 pm UTC

Does anyone remember when the last instance of color was, actually?

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby SecondTalon » Wed Aug 25, 2010 7:46 pm UTC

Raenil wrote:Does anyone remember when the last instance of color was, actually?

781 - green grass
772 - green grass
769 - green fatigues
766 - Sunset
754 - various colors for various regions
748 - fire, water forest and such

So.. yeah, it crops up often enough.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby dp2 » Wed Aug 25, 2010 7:47 pm UTC

Raenil wrote:Does anyone remember when the last instance of color was, actually?

Last week

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby doji_star » Wed Aug 25, 2010 9:25 pm UTC

Softer side of XKCD? Was I the only one who interpreted the last caption as a clear reference to the many East Asian traditions of taking poison and dying together as a couple? What could possibly be more romantic. I would generally think you would hold each other, though, but maybe you took something that causes convulsions and spasms.

As for sleeping touching each other, surely it's a function of the room temperature (literally, not figuratively). In the winter when I refuse to turn on the heat, she's on me like a blanket. When it's really hot, we're like "get away! get away!" and migrate to opposite edges.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Karilyn » Wed Aug 25, 2010 10:07 pm UTC

Vnend wrote:On first reading, I thought that the view that Majuba took on the comic was what Randell had intended, but that the last panel's text had been mis-phrased in a way that gave it a darker reading.
It's not just the last panel's text, but the way he is squirming all the way to the absolute edge of the bed in a fairly large bed, almost falling off the bed. There is easily space for a whole 'nother person between the two of them to fit comfortably. Even for people who are restless sleepers and can't cuddle while sleeping, it would be an indication of something else to get so far away from each other. Like he desperately wants to escape.

Alt-Text also supports that interpretation, what with the excitement over the idea of their dreams not including each other. If the intention was for it not to be kinda "dark", then all he would've had to so was say "Sweet, Intersecting Dreams" and it would've been the exact same joke, but with a happier meaning.

dp2 wrote:Like people who hear The Police's "Every Breath You Take" [...] and say "That is so me!"
I'm not a psycho. I'm not a psycho! Cause you aren't a psycho when you are like that and marry another person who is also like that. Cause then you match together and neither of you are psychos.

Right?

...Right?

...Guys?
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby lsdigit » Wed Aug 25, 2010 10:36 pm UTC

mmmgh. Dark my ass, you people are looking for drama, dreams by their very nature have to be "non-intersecting" and i suspect the term was used to 'venn' it up, this is a case of people looking for a funny where there is no funny. Sometimes there is just romance.

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it even comes first on the pages sub-heading.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Faranya » Thu Aug 26, 2010 12:07 am UTC

gunnar wrote:Am I the only one that interprets it like this:
He is happy to go to sleep because that's the only time he is away from her?

Makes most of the comments of "get out of my life Randall" kinda weird ;-)


I took it as he is trying to make himself feel better because he feels alone because his girlfriend doesn't want to be close to him (or him to be close to her)

Of course, I might just be rationalizing the comic to fit my life.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby TravisProbably » Thu Aug 26, 2010 1:34 am UTC

I read it as:

He's talking to someone he's in love with, then crawls into bed with his wife instead.

And it makes me sad. Cheating is not fun. But a loveless marriage is even worse.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby SirMustapha » Thu Aug 26, 2010 2:48 am UTC

lsdigit wrote:mmmgh. Dark my ass, you people are looking for drama, dreams by their very nature have to be "non-intersecting" and i suspect the term was used to 'venn' it up, this is a case of people looking for a funny where there is no funny. Sometimes there is just romance.


Are you honestly suggesting that the alt-text was not supposed to be humourous?...

...

... look here, sometimes when you don't laugh at xkcd, it's because THE JOKE WAS ACTUALLY BAD.

Faranya wrote:I took it as he is trying to make himself feel better because he feels alone because his girlfriend doesn't want to be close to him (or him to be close to her)

Of course, I might just be rationalizing the comic to fit my life.


Not at all, really: Randall has done so many comics before with that sticky, sickly sweet, bizarrely over-saccharine and "so cute you will puke" romance comics that when something like THIS comes along, it's certainly a sign that Randall is honestly exposing his harsh times and tring to validate his own loneliness -- like the guy in a mid-life crisis at the end of his marriage telling to teenagers "ahh, it's always like that, love is beautiful in the start but just wait and see! Once you get married everything goes wrong", sharing his cynical, hopeless advice to people who're too afraid of responsibility and commitment.

Randall has done "break-up" comics in the past -- some of them were exaggerated enough to (probably) be purely facetious, but these comics do not display mere humour.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby gr8r-x » Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:13 am UTC

I think everyone is reading into this what they wish.

My take: Personally, I see it as a happy couple, who don't feel the need to share every moment (wake or sleep) with each other. We spend plenty of time together during the day, and night, but I almost always end up sleeping on the very edge of the bed, it's just what I've always done. I see the 'to leave the world behind' as a reference to actually falling asleep.

Alt-text: I almost never dream about my partner... Does that say something more about me/my relationship than I'd assumed?? :shock:

As a side note, when I sleep on a couch, I try and squeeze myself into the very back of it. Opposite ends of the spectrum really. :P

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Quezed » Thu Aug 26, 2010 4:16 am UTC

Showed my wife the comic. She thought it was cute.

I think he's observing the same thing I have. My wife and I are newlywed but have slept in the same bed for nearly a decade. We have mostly slept apart like them...almost exactly them...because it's more comfortable. Sometimes I've thought it odd. It seems like we should be wrapped up in each other. But that's not how it works. That said, just having her in bed with me is enough. Her not being there makes me feel empty. She needs to be there...even if there's no physical contact.

It's adorable. And true to life.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby abcdeline » Thu Aug 26, 2010 4:41 am UTC

I took this as he is happy to be sleeping next to her, because knowing that he can forget about the rest of the world.

For me, falling asleep is usually more of a task. I need background noise or my wandering thoughts keep me up worrying, but when i get to sleep with my lovely girlfriend just having her beside me calms my mind and i fall asleep much easier.

I guess this comic can be interpreted differently depending on your own situation.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Adaro » Thu Aug 26, 2010 6:47 am UTC

huh.... not related to this comic specifically but I just noticed this beneath it:

We did not invent the algorithm. The algorithm consistently finds Jesus. The algorithm killed Jeeves.
The algorithm is banned in China. The algorithm is from Jersey. The algorithm constantly finds Jesus.
This is not the algorithm. This is close.

in tiny print. Has that always been there?

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby Kisama » Thu Aug 26, 2010 6:55 am UTC

Adaro wrote:huh.... not related to this comic specifically but I just noticed this beneath it:

We did not invent the algorithm. The algorithm consistently finds Jesus. The algorithm killed Jeeves.
The algorithm is banned in China. The algorithm is from Jersey. The algorithm constantly finds Jesus.
This is not the algorithm. This is close.

in tiny print. Has that always been there?

As long as I've been reading xkcd.

The algorithm is
Spoiler:
google
?
cd880b726e0a0dbd4237f10d15da46f4

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby phlip » Thu Aug 26, 2010 7:01 am UTC

Adaro wrote:huh.... not related to this comic specifically but I just noticed this beneath it:

We did not invent the algorithm. The algorithm consistently finds Jesus. The algorithm killed Jeeves.
The algorithm is banned in China. The algorithm is from Jersey. The algorithm constantly finds Jesus.
This is not the algorithm. This is close.

in tiny print. Has that always been there?

Since April '07.

Also, SirMustapha: I'm pretty sure you've pulled the "the comic is obviously an author-insertion story, and everything that happens in the comic has also happened, literally, to Randall himself" act before. You should probably get some new material, your trolling's getting repetitive.

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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby weex » Thu Aug 26, 2010 8:17 am UTC

This comic is unequivocally about a man who is either an insomniac or someone who prefers to be awake but either way enjoys sleeping next to the girl enough that he can get over it.
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Re: Falling Asleep discussion (784)

Postby gmcleod » Thu Aug 26, 2010 10:37 am UTC

Oh my god..

As interesting as all of your posts are, I'm very supprised more people didn't see this comic as simply a big reference to A Softer World. I'm sure its really not much deeper than that.


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