Grant Turner: Morningside’s King of Naps (feature story

A group of prospective students walk through the lobby of Eppley Auditorium on their campus tour when they spot Grant Turner, a sophomore, napping on one of the couches. The student ambassador has to think quickly about how he will address the unusual sight, as its not part of the tour. “Well, as you can see, the furniture in our buildings is so nice that you can’t help but fall asleep on it.” They all awkwardly laugh as a groggy Grant pretends to keep sleeping to avoid any interaction with his audience.


Grant gets a quick nap in between classes in the hallway of Roadman Hall.

This is a common occurrence for Grant. He is the undisputed “King of Naps” at Morningside College. A number of students and faculty members have witnessed him in action since he has slept in nearly every building on campus. Not all interactions with onlookers were as awkward. “There were many times when I was napping in Eppley and I would wake up with a banana and a bottle of water and one time a blanket and I would wonder where that was coming from. Then one day I woke up as he was doing it and it was Orlando, the janitor in Eppley, who I think is one of the nicest guys ever.”

Turner is a sophomore business major who commutes to campus. Most students who live on campus go back to their rooms in the residence halls if they want to take a nap between their classes. Since he doesn’t have a room to return to he began taking naps wherever he could. So far the only buildings he hasn’t slept in are the apartments on campus and the Allee Gym, which happen to be the two buildings he has never entered.

Grant uses these naps to account for his lack of a sleepless night. “I have a lot of problems with insomnia and don’t get a lot of sleep at night but I also like, you know, not dying so that’s when I decided to nap around.” Turner has no problem falling asleep at night, it’s staying asleep he struggles with. “I am well aware that my habits aren’t normal.”

Insomnia is a condition where a person has difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, even when a person has a chance to do so. It is a common problem for adults, effecting nearly 30 percent of the population. The two most common symptoms are waking up feeling unrefreshed and waking up multiple times a night.

Turner asked that we meet to conduct this interview at his favorite nap destination: the couches on the upper level of the Eppley lobby. He says that even in the winter the lobby of Eppley is very warm and there is always music playing. This mixed with the general comfort of those couches makes for a pleasant napping atmosphere. “One of my favorite times to nap is during college choir so I can hear pretty voices as I drift off to dream land.” He also spends a lot of time in Eppley because of his music minor.

He says that a lot of buildings on campus don’t lend themselves to napping. The HYPR is one that came to his mind. “There’s too much noise and no place to lie down.” Another building he doesn’t enjoy much is the Walker Science Center. He described it as cold and hospital-like. Aside from that he says the all buildings have their own merits when it comes to napping.

Grant has been declared the “King of Naps” by those who know him well. Jared Martin, one of Grants closest friends, finds his ability to nap astounding. “It’s crazy. I swear I will look down at my computer, look back up, and he will be asleep.” He recounts one story of how while waiting for friends to be finished with a rehearsal in Klinger-Neal Theatre Grant laid down on the hard tile floor of the lobby and fell asleep in less than two minutes. “If Grant can fall asleep there, he can do it anywhere!”

Amy Carothers, another close friend, says that she finds his napping endearing. “It’s pretty adorable. I mean, you will just walk around campus and there is Grant sleeping on a tree stump.”

College students have a long history with napping. Research shows that napping helps enhance memory, learning, and motor skills which is useful for students. As the New York Time reports, some colleges go as far as to build nap pods for their students. But until Morningside invests in that feature, Turner naps wherever he can.

Grant, known for his ability to nap in some crazy places, remembers one time in the cafeteria when he closed his eyes for what he thought was a minute, but when he opened them again he realized his entire table had left him there and the cafeteria was closed. “They even left my plate of food in front of me!” He claims that that experience helped him to understand who his friends really were. “As much as I hate being woken up that was one instance where I should have been.”

He was also able to take a nap in one of the lesser frequented buildings on campus. While waiting for a presentation by the applied theatre class he fell asleep in what was being called the “solitary confinement room.” It was a completely barren room on the very top floor of Longfellow School Building with no furniture.

One of his favorite nap experiences was just a few weeks ago when he was napping in Eppley. “I woke up from my nap and I was surrounded by the ENTIRE college choir. I don’t know why they were there. It was honestly terrifying.”

Grant’s history with interesting nap locations didn’t start in college. Some of his other crazy nap experiences have taken place in the back room of a Burger King, at least four vehicles owned by Budweiser, the Walmart parking lot, a closet in his high school, the bleachers at a track meet, a river boat, and Mount Vernon.

Grant borrows a blanket from a friend as he takes a nap in Dimmit hall.

Grant borrows a blanket from a friend as he takes a nap in Dimmit hall.

Mount Vernon came about on a school trip he took to Washington D.C. his senior year of high school. The school put them through what he described as packed days of sight-seeing. “We would be out about town from 6 AM to 1 AM. It was crazy!” By the third day Grant had had enough. “So we went to Mount Vernon. Which was great by the way, big ol’ plug for Mount Vernon here. They have a nice little museum there where they have a theater that plays an informational video about George Washington. They were having some technical difficulties with the video and I zoned out. I slept for an undocumented amount of time.”

Insomnia is a treatable condition. Treatments include therapy and medication among other non-medical and natural options. The most important part of treatment is to determine the underlying cause of the condition such as stress or medical conditions.

For now, Grant will continue his nap quest as a treatment. “I’m not a trained physician, [my habits] probably aren’t healthy, but I’m not gonna stop.” He says that in the future he hopes to nap in the two buildings that he hasn’t been in to round out his nap tour of Morningside.

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