Baby Boomers: Falling asleep anywhere we can

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Baby Boomers: Falling asleep anywhere we can
By Ray Hanania

Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine were doing an interview with A FOX TV affiliate in Tacoma promoting their new movie “Now You See Me.”

During the interview, as you’ve probably already heard, Freeman appears to nod off as Caine is responding to questions from the reporters.

Freeman probably did wink off there for a few seconds. He’s 75 years old, for Pete’s Sake. (Why is it always “Pete” that we care about?) Anyway, at least the TV reporters were respectful and didn’t embarrass Caine or Freeman any more than they may have been just being broadcast on TV nodding off.

Of course, these days, the game is getting attention. And frankly, had Freeman not nodded off during the interview, seriously, would any of us had even heard or bothered to read anything about the new movie “Now You See Me?”

Maybe it was a clever publicity stunt to give the movie some attention. It’s not like a 75-year-old popular actor nodding off is a bad thing. Every Baby Boomer knows what it’s like to nod off.

When I was young, maybe 9 or 10, I was riding on the CTA bus on Jeffrey Avenue heading downtown with my mom and sister and I remember often seeing older people nodding off on the bus ride. That wasn’t the embarrassment, of course. What was embarrassing was when those people nodding off started to drool from one side of their mouth while they were napping on the rollicking bus ride with it’s fast stops, loud motor grinding, driver yelping out the major intersections, and the car noises from all over.

Actually, that that distraction creates a kind of a “buzz” environment making it easier to nod off. It is easier to fall asleep with noise in the background. I can’t sleep without the TV being on. And thankfully for technology, I can set the sleep timer. Or actually, my wife sets the sleep timer.

On the ride home at night after many hours of walking Chicago’s Loop and browsing through Goldblatt’s bargain basement, Marshall Fields window browsing, or hanging out at the little café in Woolworths on State Street, I was sleepy too and would doze off, too. And probably drooling as I dreamed, too.

So Morgan Freeman dozing off at 75 on FOX TV isn’t so bad at all. In fact, it did give the new film a lot of media buzz and news coverage.

The film’s main star is Facebook character Jesse Eisenberg. According to the IMDb online database of films, it’s about “An FBI agent and an Interpol detective track a team of illusionists who pull off bank heists during their performances and reward their audiences with the money.”

Sounds interesting.

Freeman is one of my favorite actors. Michael Caine is a great one, too.

Maybe a few more of us should take a moment to doze off. It could have some positive benefits, like preventing conflict or craziness that plagues our world today. If more of us were sleeping, maybe bad things wouldn’t happen as often.

I don’t know. I like to find something positive in everything, even something that really is insignificant, except to the mainstream media which can’t exist without exaggerating and twisting and beating up things and people.

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Ray Hanania

Ray Hanania

Ray Hanania is an award winning political and humor columnist who analyzes American and Middle East politics, and life in general. He is an author of several books.

"I write about three topics, the Middle East, politics and life in general. I often take my life experiences and offer them in an entertaining way to readers, and I take on the toughest topics like the Israel-Palestine conflict and don't pull any punches about what I feel is fair. But, my priority is always about writing the good story."

Hanania covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. Hanania began writing in 1975 when he published The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East food stores in 48 American States (2004-2007).

Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at, and at, and at He has also published weekly columns in the Jerusalem Post newspaper,, Newsday Newspaper in New York, the Orlando Sentinel Newspapers, and the Arlington Heights Daily Herald.

Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem.

Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media. In 2009, Hanania received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. He was honored for his writing skills with two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild. In 1990, Hanania was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times editors for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.

His writings have also been honored by two national Awards from ADC for his writing, and from the National Arab American Journalists Association.

The managing editor of Suburban Chicagoland Online News website, Hanania's columns also appear in the Southwest News Newspaper Group of 8 newspapers.

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Ray Hanania