Spanish Construction Worker Wins Madrid's First-Ever Siesta Competition : The Two-Way Contestants had 20 minutes to nap on blue couches in a shopping mall, as a doctor measured their heart rates. There were bonus points for snoring and costumes.

Spanish Construction Worker Wins Madrid's First-Ever Siesta Competition

A judge watches as people sleep a siesta during the first Siesta Championship in Madrid. Paul White/AP Photo hide caption

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Paul White/AP Photo

I just yawned with envy.

On a gray, rainy, soporific afternoon in Washington, this article caught my eye: "Ready, Set, Snore! Spain Holds Siesta Contest."

"Some clutched pillows or stuffed animals, others fought back giggles as they sought to take a siesta in public -- all in the name of plugging a quintessential Spanish custom endangered by the demands of modern life," it begins.

Amid the bustle of a shopping mall, with babies wailing and pop music piped in overhead, clutches of people tried to snooze Thursday in what was billed as Spain's first siesta competition.

This is something I'd have a shot at winning, I think. At least today.

The goal -- to promote Spain's cherished post-luncheon nap -- is no joke, although the costumes of some who participated may be.

Contestants had 20 minutes to nap. A doctor measured their heart rate.

According to The Associated Press, "they could win extra points for snoring, adopting goofy sleep positions or wearing outlandish night wear in plain view of gawking shoppers."

The winner: Fermin Lominchar, "who raised his arms in triumph as he mounted the podium."

He was timed as having slept 18 minutes, much of it with his generous gut sticking out from an untucked plaid shirt.

Sweet victory, with style.