It’s Blue Monday, supposedly the most depressing day of the year, which is funny considering how close to the beginning of the year it is. We’re only two weeks in and yet people are finding it hard to cope. Still, that’s understandable given the dark days, the oppressive cold and the seasonal expansion of debt that often follows Christmas and so many end-of-year parties. (Not to mention the seasonal expansion of belts following said parties, with the aforementioned cold and darkness standing in the way of exercise.)
All that being said, it seems like a good day to inject some optimism into the mix and try to push back against the winter malaise. Here then, for no good reason other than to put a different perspective on things, is a short collection of things to be thankful for.
Days are getting longer. That’s right! Just a little while ago it seemed like there were only about seven hours of daylight that existed between trudging into and out of work. Now we’re up to about nine, and climbing! This means that not only can you get out of bed and prepare for work without turning every light in the house on, but you can also leave the office and still see slivers of light peeking through the clouds. This is less true if you don’t hold down a 9 to 5, but either way it means you can sleep in and feel less bad about it.
Hawaii still exists. This is true! While many of us (including myself) have not seen this sparsely populated set of paradise islands in person, they remain on this Earth to check out some time in the future. This is news after an emergency alert system for the state went off for about 40 minutes, leaving many to wonder what kind of madman would want to nuke a place known mostly for vacations and weddings, as well as tropical shirts and drinks. Well maybe a few people would. But not REALLY, you know?
It’s the year of the dog. Dogs! Those of us who closely follow Chinese astrology are acutely aware of the fact that it is soon to be the year of man’s best friend. How does this affect you? Probably not at all, though it depends how heavily you believe in cosmic mysticism and all that. Really it’s just a good excuse to go find a dog, if you don’t have one already, and make a new friend. The year doesn’t officially start until February, but dogs don’t judge. You can be early or late. They can’t read calendars, but they can play fetch and return affection.
Bill freaking Murray. The man! Those of us who thought that the world could use a little more Bill Murray must have been plenty pleased to see the SNL legend take the Saturday stage again as Steve Bannon. Those of us who missed it can check out the clips online. Or just fire up Ghostbusters, or What About Bob?, or Scrooged (better late than never), or Groundhog Day (that one’s coming up). Bill beats the blues every time.
And that’s it for now. If the existence of Hawaii and/or dogs and/or Bill Murray can’t warm your heart, then at least rest easy knowing that the most statistically depressing day of the year has come and gone. And hey, you’ve still got those longer days to look forward to and the end of winter is only a few weeks away... We’ll see what the groundhogs say about that one.