Friday, January 16, 2009

The Funk Settles In.

I have no idea why -- and believe me, I've done some thinking about it -- but for a decade or so, I've tended to slip into a mild, short depression in mid-to-late January. Laura and I call this the "Richmond to Columbus" time of the year, after the drive we take to Virginia to visit her family. The stretch of highway from Richmond to Columbus is dull, flat, straight, and uninteresting, and this time of year is much the same. It's the time in which you've recovered from the holidays and they're no longer part of your active thoughts, when you're settled back into routine, with cold, dully unpleasant weather waiting outside the door whenever you venture out. It seems like things are harder this time of year, and the circulating hard times this year seem to be exaggerating the effect. And today, for the first time this year, I started feeling the frigid weather seeping in to me on an existential level. Maybe the fact that today was a bit of a bad day kicked off the gloominess. Our offices at work flooded yesterday evening when a pipe froze and broke, and we did lots of coping with that this morning; we canceled our first performance ever because of the cold (42 degrees this morning in the Artsgarden, or 54 degrees warmer than it was outside -- which is actually pretty good for a big, uninsulated glass dome); our computers are having issues; it's extremely cold outside, so I missed another day on the bike. Nothing individually traumatic, but a low-grade funk-inspiring climate of not-good.

I'm aware of the funk settling in, which helps with the coping; awareness doesn't keep it from happening, though. I'm keeping busy, exercising, writing, and in general not giving myself any time for mopey navel-gazing or surly ruminations. But I can feel it under the surface. If I don't pay attention, it makes me a bit grouchy and even more cynical than usual, but I'm good at keeping it under wraps (usually)....

Just thought I'd share and vent. How about y'all -- does the seasonal funk hit you too?


Tina said...

No! January is a fun month, because it's the traditional month for Hot Things, with Spices Added. It's chemistry, and experimentation, and unhealthy dining all around. This is the January Spirit!

Tea: with Cinnamon, cloves, vanilla, cardamom (possibly not all at once)

Hot cider: Cinnamon, cloves, allspice.

Cocoa: Rum, vodka (these are spices right?)

Oatmeal: virtually infinite

Coco-wheats: Maraschino cherries or peanut butter.

Ramen: Hot sauce and ginger!

other than the coco-wheats, all of this fits in a shoebox at my desk at work. It's the 3 PM box o'happiness - literally, Just Add Water!

2 rarae aves! said...

I'm all for spice and oatmeal, but I too get a January funk. For me I think I've run out of "banked" sunlight. I just need more daylight and slightly warmer weather. Maybe we both need to sit under full-spectrum lamps...