THE WINTER BLAHS

Shoveling Show–What Fun!

The Winter Blahs hit hard this time of year. Christmas is long past, Valentine’s Day only a memory, and St. Patrick’s Day not that much fun. The first day of Spring is next week but you’d never guess that by looking out the window, where deep snow stubbornly refuses to melt. There’s no cheer around here.

There are various names for the Winter Blahs, for example: Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD (“a form of clinical depression that occurs during the winter”) or Winter Blues (“a feeling of…deep unhappiness associated with experiencing the cold and darkness of winter “). The internet is chock full of articles about the Winter Blahs, many of them ridiculous and/or annoying.

Consider this excerpt from (and this is a real website) The Glamorous Housewife.com:

What about painting your nails a cherry color? You should also get a pedicure even if nobody sees your feet. Taking a moment to make yourself pretty is time well spent.

Warm up a bowl of nuts, pour yourself a glass of champagne and pretend you are on first class flying to somewhere fabulous and tropical.

Now is the perfect time to learn a new craft. I am working on my needlepoint skills.

And my personal favorite: Pop some popcorn and snuggle with your kids while watching a movie. [NOTE: I used to watch movies with our boys on snow days—not snuggling—teenage boys don’t snuggle with their moms—but how many times can you watch The Big Lebowski?]

And then there are the helpful suggestions from readers of a website I will not name. The responders who lived in long, snowy winter locales had reasonable advice:

“I start planning my spring plantings, going through seed catalogs, etc., “(Ohio)

“I load my camera with black-and-white film and head for the woods or a park.” (Montana)

Fine. However, several West Coasters wrote in as if they knew what a true winter, a long’ frigid, overcast half a year is like.

“I head to the grocery store, buy about six loaves of bread, and then find a pond full of ducks and geese.” (Oregon)

“I take ballroom-dancing lessons.” (Washington state)

Well, all this snark has cheered me up. As if to support that, a beautiful red male cardinal just landed on a barren, leafless tree outside my window. It helps. I’ll conclude with a photo of CatmanDeux, who knows how to get by no matter what the weather.

CatmanDeux stretching

Kitty Stretching in the Winter Sum

 

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About Alexis

Alexis Rankin Popik, author of Kiss Me Over the Garden Gate, is an award-winning short story writer whose work has appeared in The Berkshire Review and Potpourri Magazine. She has penned numerous articles about local history that have been published in Connecticut Explored and the University of Connecticut School of Law and The Hartford Seminary publications. A former union organizer, Popik traveled the country educating shipyard workers about health and safety and founded a labor-management health plan before turning to writing fiction full-time. She lives with her husband in New England.

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