I pulled the covers up over my head and willed myself to dream something a little less noisy.  It didn't work.  The counting only got louder.  And to add insult to injury, it was accompanied by some perky little disco tune that played over and over and over again.  This was not at all the sort of dream I'd had in mind for a peaceful night's sleep.  Besides, there were a million things on tomorrow's to-do list, and...


     I cocked open an eye and checked the clock.  5:00a.m.