Famous Insomniacs

I can’t stop, to be honest, I adore lists. Here is an other one about famous insomniacs and the way they had been cured:

1. Marlene Dietrich, actress : a sardine-and-onion sandwich on rye.

2. Amy Lowell, poet : in a hotel, Lowell hired five rooms – one to sleep in, and empty rooms above, below, and on either side, in order to guarantee quiet.

3. W.C. Fields, actor : On his worst nights, he could only fall asleep under a beach umbrella being sprinkled by a garden hose.

4. Alexandre Dumas, author : He took late-night strolls.

5. Judy Garland, actress: As a teenager, Garland was prescribed amphetamines to control her weight. As the years went by she took so many that she sometimes stayed up three or four days running. She eventually died of a drug overdose.

6. Tallulah Bankhead, actress: She hired young homosexual `caddies’ to keep her company, and one of their most important duties was to hold her hand until she drifted off to sleep.

7. Franz Kafka, author: kept a diary detailing his suffering. For October 2, 1911, he wrote, `Sleepless night. The third in a row. I fall asleep soundly, but after an hour I wake up, as though I had laid my head in the wrong hole.’

8. Theodore Roosevelt, US president: a shot of cognac in a glass of milk.

9. Groucho Marx, comic actor: When he couldn’t sleep, he would phone people up in the middle of the night and insult them.

10. Mark Twain, author: Twain once threw a pillow at the window of his bedroom while he was a guest in a friend’s house. When the satisfying crash let in what he thought was fresh air, he fell asleep at last. In the morning he discovered that he had broken a glass-enclosed bookcase.

A post about healthy insomnia cures is about to come in days. The reference was The book of lists at canongate.net.