The Murderous, Boring, Beige Moods Of January

I want to say something about the bleak days of January. But damn it, that’s a hard thing to do when all you want to do is lie on your couch in a fleece space suit watching Investigation Discovery and tossing Trader Joes’ Cheese puffs into your food hole.

This time of year in Boston is the WORST. The air is punitively cold, and the sun goes down at 4:30 like a traitor. And then, predictably my mind goes to dark places. Well — strike that. In the grand spectrum of human darkness, I’m about a 5, realistically. I mean, I’m never chipper. Nobody has ever accused me of being “cloyingly sweet” or “too happy.”  A lot of things get on my nerves. I’m neither a manifesto writer or a violent type. However, I did wish a man dead at a cafe last week for holding his credit card out for the cashier in a way that struck me as pretentious. I stood there in a weird murderous daze for a few beats too long, staring hate-holes into the side of his head with my mind.

That’s not normal. But then again, it’s January, so I don’t feel too bad about it. 

I don’t know how to best describe the way I feel during the winter. I’m not sobbing into my beer or stepping into traffic. I’m aware of the good in life. I’m capable of a good laugh. I’m just in a certain state of mind during which I sort of need to separate myself from humanity much of the time, both for my own good, and for the good of humanity. So, you’re welcome. You’re welcome for the weirdness.Screen Shot 2015-01-18 at 3.01.00 PM
When I do get out among the people, I am careful to budget my social time, lest I say something inappropriate over which I will later beat myself up.  It’s pre-emptive social awkward bumbling avoidance.

So I’m a little dark. Fine. And I have my version of the blues, which isn’t really that bad, and I’m used to it. Not the blues, exactly — more of a shade of beige. The beiges. They’re not without value or substance, but pokey and annoyingly flat and uninspiring, like an ill-fitting pair of slacks from Talbots. The beiges of January are not sung. They are merely acknowledged and survived.



8 thoughts on “The Murderous, Boring, Beige Moods Of January

  1. annieemmy

    You just described my entire state of existence during winter. It’s. The. Worst. Glad I’m not along, I guess. Mer. I’m going to go crawl back into bed now.

  2. movingliquid

    I totally understand what you’re saying about not being cloyingly happy or up all the time because I’m the same. Like you, it’s not to say I can’t enjoy a big laugh, but I’m pickier about what I laugh about. That’s one reason I sort of like this bleak time of year — not many people expect us to be all that chipper. It’s like permission to just BE. Then again, Oregon winters are fairly moderate compared to Boston or most parts of the USA. An hour ago I got soaked coming out of church and right now the sun is shining and the sky bright blue.

    On my way home I stopped at St. Vinnie’s (a local charity shop) and all books were half off. I found a copy of one of the “Yes, Jeeves” books by P.G. Wodehouse and plan to tuck in. It’s impossible not to feel a little giddy when reading Jeeve’s and Woosters words in Laurie and Fry’s voices.

    You go ahead and be beige or blue or fuchsia. It’s all good.

    1. notesfromthebathroomfloor Post author

      Ooh, a good book sounds like the perfect remedy. 🙂 I just bought a book of comedy writing from The New Yorker with pieces from the 30s to 2013. It felt really good to curl up with a book and have a laugh. 🙂

    1. notesfromthebathroomfloor Post author

      My brother lives in Thailand- near Bangkok. I really should plan a visit for next January. I hate winter, but I also love hating winter. It’s irrational. I do think the bleakness feeds me in a weird way, but maybe I just have some sort of climate-related Stockholm Syndrome. I’ve befriended my captor: Winter.

  3. RO

    Books have gotten me through many a tragedy, thank goodness. I’m probably the odd person here in that I love winter and the cold weather for some strange reason. While in the Air Force, I was stationed in North Dakota and enjoyed the snow and the people, who were super friendly. There are times that I regress and feel sad but those days are further and further apart now. Thailand sounds fun and exciting! Hugs…


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