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There was a time—my childhood—when pajamas made sense. I wore my jammies to bed. I wore them when I was sick. And, of course, I wore them all day on Christmas day. Around wintertime, my mommy would even supply me with flannel PJs, which felt like wearing a hug. I loved my jammy-jams.

And then puberty hit. I run hot, and not in the brooding and sexy way. I mean that my body gets overheated at the mere sight of wool. I’ll pit out a t-shirt when it’s 60 degrees outside. I am, as David Roth might say, an inherently wet guy, and have been so since roughly age 10. Once I grew that old, my beloved jammies became both constrictive and unreasonably warm. So I started sleeping with my top off, which felt a little bit taboo before I realized that it felt sexy. That still wasn’t enough, so I started sleeping with my bottoms off, too. But with my boxers on, because sleeping in the nude was too sexy. That’s where I stayed for the ensuing three-plus decades. Sleeping in your undies was what grownups did. Pajamas were for little kids, and I was no longer a little kid. I was a big strong man. Grr.

My wife and I had two sons and I’ve occasionally implored them to shed their nighttime skins and sleep 95 percent au naturel. Both have clung to their PJs, and I had a difficult time understanding why. Until I had to fold their laundry one day.

I have spent the entirety of my parenting career jealous that my children get to wear more comfortable clothes than me. When they were babies, they wore impossibly fleecy shorts, down-soft t-shirts, and featherweight mesh hoodies. I already dressed like a slob, but I was always scheming for ways to be even more comfortable, more spoiled, than I already was. Alas, Gymboree didn’t make baby clothes in my size. And if they had, I only could have gotten away with wearing star-fanny pajamas if I was the kind of dude who attended conventions for perverts.

Tween pajamas turned out to be a different story. My older son got a $30 pair of summer jammies from H&M—shorts and a slightly oversized t-shirt—and threw them in the wash. When I folded them, they were uncommonly soft to the touch. This was an H&M product, mind you. It was probably made by enslaved puppies using materials scavenged from a decommissioned passenger jet. But still, so soft! So when the boy asked for an extra pair, I took a big chance at the high school dance and added ones in my size to the cart as well. If there was the possibility that I could be as cozy at night as a child, I was obligated to explore it.

I must pause here to talk about sleep. The older I get, I more I love to sleep. This shouldn’t be the case, given that I only have so much time left on Earth. I should strive to be awake and alive as much as I can, romping around meadows and picking wildflowers and what have you. But I have no interest in that. I just want to go to bed, and not because I’m clinically depressed. I still do stuff during the day, but I also nap every afternoon and I go to bed early at night. The only time I experience FOMO is when I’m out at night and wish I was back in bed. Even when I can’t fall asleep, I love to sleep. And I don’t mean this in the Arianna Huffington way, where getting a good night’s sleep is some incredible lifehack that allows you to out-rise and out-grind the rest of humanity. No, I love to sleep because sleeping fucking ROCKS. When I’m awake, the world is bullshit. Kids scream. Traffic builds up. Countries get bombed. Truly awful shit. Then I close my eyes and POOF! It all goes away. Isn’t that fucking incredible? Imagine if you were dead. It’d be like being asleep all the time! Holy shit, that would rock. I can’t wait to be dead.

In the meantime, I live in a period of history where most Americans have access to a comfy bed. Not all of us have this privilege, and I’ll stage a sit-in sometime (during waking hours) to ensure pillowtop mattresses for all, or “PMA” as I will dub my cause. But still, there’s a good chance that if you’re reading this post, you do not sleep on a bed made of straw. You sleep well, which means that you live well. Better than the Queen of France, in fact. Here’s a photo of Marie Antoinette's chambers at the palace of Versailles:

Getty Images

Looks ritzy, yeah? Well you’d fucking stab your servant if you had to sleep in this bed every night. Sure, this bed has a convenient wraparound curtain to shield you from both the harsh sunlight and from the ghost of Jacob Marley. But I can guarantee you that any modern bed is more comfortable than the bespoke Amazon box pictured above. Our mattresses have springs, and memory foam, and the aforementioned pillowtops. This mattress was probably made of crushed-up human bones. The only way to fall asleep back in those days was to drink 15 pints of brandy every night. Meanwhile, I could be dead sober and still find myself dreaming on a cloud.

I think God for this. I thank God that, every night, I get to be warm and dry and comfy. In fact, I’ve been warm and dry and comfy nearly every night of my life. I went camping for one week back when I was 15. It was indelible. A lifetime of memories. But also, sleeping in a tent fucking BLEW. I have not gone camping since. Camping is for people who want to be close to nature, and by “nature” I mean a bear eating them. No thank you. I want my bed, and I want to be as snug in my bed as I can possibly be.

Enter my new jammies. My wife didn’t know I’d made this purchase, which immediately drew her suspicion. She’d like me to dress UP more, not down. Right away, she told me that I wasn’t allowed to wear my PJs downstairs, because she knew what would’ve happened. They would have ceased to be PJs and simply become my everyday garb. A bridge too far. She said that I could only wear my new jammies to bed, and I acceded. My first night in them, I slipped into our bed and felt … fresh. And clean. My shorts had pockets, just in case I wanted to sneak some Jolly Ranchers into the sack. My shirt was ribbed (for my pleasure), with three little buttons running down from the collar in case I wanted to show a little bit of skin. You know how sleeping under freshly laundered sheets is the best? These clean-ass jammies gave me that same sensation. Marie Antoinette would’ve been hella jelly. I immediately bought two more pairs so that I could go to bed in clean jammies every night. It was the right play. I’m never going back to my boxers.

I am not gonna tell you how to live your nightlife. Maybe you already sleep in pajamas. Maybe you sleep in the nude. Maybe you sleep in a corset and stockings, in which case send photos. All I can tell you is that I have now perfected my sleeping habit. I sleep like a king. No, like a pope. No … like a king of the popes, which means I sleep like a GOD. My beddy-bye time is now infallible. Wake me up from my beauty rest and it better be for sex.

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