I’m writing this on Blue Monday - everyone’s favourite pseudoscientific PR stunt of a holiday! Next to Black Friday, Mauve Monday and Hide in a Wendy House Wednesday, that is.
Billed as the most depressing day of the year, it falls on the third Monday in January as a result of a made-up maths equation taking into account weather, debt, time since Christmas, likelihood one will have failed one’s new year’s resolutions and low motivational levels. Which all sounds pretty credible, if you don’t include people who like cold weather, don’t enjoy/celebrate Christmas, and are never happier than when they’re seeing off their resolutions with a bucket of fried chicken and another of gin.
What it also fails to explain is what happens on the third Tuesday in January to suddenly raise everybody’s spirits again. Maybe it’s become a self-fulfilling prophecy, the Emperor’s New Clothes of mood elevators – tell people that fictional Blue Monday is over and they’re immediately more inclined to go out and dance a merry jig?
But ultimately, the thing about Blue Monday is that it becomes even more so when everyone harps on about how the whole thing is rubbish, and you’re left confused because actually, you do feel quite sad.
I felt sad this morning when I discovered payday isn’t this Friday, as I had cheerfully convinced myself, but next Friday - meaning there’s a whole 10 days before I see the little chink of light from the bottom of my cavernous overdraft. Having spent the weekend thinking I was being paid this week, I also spent as though I was being paid this week. Oysters for everybody!
I felt sad when I discovered just now that we don’t have any loo roll. Or biscuits. And I felt sad when I realised that I’ve watched the last episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race on Netflix and have to wait five weeks for the new series to start (if you’ve not watched it, by the way, do – like America’s Next Top Model but with drag queens, it is everything you’ve ever wanted from television).
I also felt sad listening to commentators on the case of Lord Rennard, who seem mistakenly to believe that harassment isn’t harassment as long as you claim not to have “meant to upset anyone.” Upset, you see – not anger, or objectify, or violate a basic human right. The men on the radio hoping nobody got “upset” is a little too close to a “calm down, dear” to do my Monday blues any good.
And if it’s weather that holds the key to banishing the gloom, we can’t be too optimistic there either – Ukip’s special brand of homophobic weather forecast predicts floods, ice, fire and brimstone for as long as gay marriage is legal. Still, at least that’s something to laugh about. Valentine’s Day might bring an avalanche and we can all go sledging.