It was perhaps the most unscientific test ever, but an Occupy D.C. protester who's gone without sleep for nearly 80 hours is mostly sane -- though a bit bipolar -- according to some questionnaires we found on the Internet. Ricky Lehner is a 23-year-old protester from St. Petersburg, Florida, who's been living in Washington D.C.'s Mcpherson Square since Occupy D.C. started on Oct. 7. He has been awake since 10 a.m. Monday. That's the day U.S. Park Police said they'd start enforcing a ban on sleeping in the park, though they haven't really done it yet. Until they promise not to, though (or until he collapses), Lehner says he won't sleep.
By now, Lehner says, he and fellow sleep-striker Tom Reges are used to their unnatural awake state. "I think the trick I’m figuring out today is that I need to not sit at Starbucks and work on my computer, but to get up and keep moving around," he told The Atlantic Wire on Thursday. "The nights are the hardest part, for sure. It helps that there’s more than one of us doing it. We can hang out and play cards -- we were playing Scrabble, but we decided that was a bad idea. The 24-hour McDonalds that’s around here is a life saver, so we’ll wander over there and get a cup of coffee." Lehner said he was averaging around seven cups of coffee a day.