Early Mornings: A TED Talk on The 4am Mystery

You know how we love early mornings and spend most of our time talking about them? Well, our research led us to a great TED talk by poet and storyteller Rives, all about the mysterious and fascinating 4am…

Having amassed nearly three million views, this TED talk – by American poet, storyteller and author Rives – clearly strikes a chord with people. In it, Rives questions why 4am is so often referenced in popular culture – from Faron Young’s It’s Four in the Morning to Homer mentioning the mystical ‘4am’ in an episode of The Simpsons.

We publish articles at 5am each day and the whole ethos of The Early Hour is surrounding early mornings – those hours of solitude, possibly loneliness, when it feels like the whole world is asleep and it’s just you, on your own, navigating insomnia or new parenthood or getting up for work or to catch a flight or go to a market.

It’s always fascinating to hear different people’s experiences of 5am – whether it’s staying up late and partying through the night, or waking up early because the baby’s crying –

Watching this video is a reminder of the poignance of this time, when it’s quiet and still, and either wonderfully calm or horribly isolating.

So thank you Rives, for doing your research into 4am and sharing this clever, funny and insightful talk with others, like us, who are similarly obsessed with the pre-dawn hours. The early morning really is a mystical time… And hearing it referenced in this way reinforces our feeling, at The Early Hour, that there’s much to discuss on the topic of early mornings.

Enjoy this video (we’ve added subtitles in case you’re watching at work or while your other half sleeps in bed next to you. Just click the white box with three horizontal white dots in the bottom righthand corner to activate them).

Rives: on The 4am Mystery…

Your view on early mornings…

What does 4am mean to you? Have you ever noticed how often it’s mentioned in songs or TV shows? Let us know in the comment section below… 

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