COLUMN: The best day to be blue – you do the math

There’s an official day for everything but, it turns out, ‘Blue Monday’ is a bit of a sham

I’d never heard of Blue Monday until it was upon us earlier this week.

The day – coined in 2005 by a travel company, of all things, and allegedly determined by mathematical formula to be the “most depressing day of the year” – just passed, on, well, Monday. But it wasn’t until I opened social media apps on my phone and saw people talking about it that I knew it was a thing.

The most depressing day of the entire year? Really? Quite a declaration, yet I still felt the same. Not great. Not bad. Certainly far from depressed.

There’s certainly a case to be made that, at least for the nine-to-five crowd, Monday is the worst day of the week. And Mondays in January are probably even worse.

And, if I were to be depressed on this most depressing of days, the fact I learned of it on social media – not always the most pleasant place to spend time – wouldn’t help.

But still, the claim seemed a little rich.

However, it did get me thinking about the number of non-statutory “holidays” that now exist in the public sphere and are acknowledged, if not exactly celebrated. (I trust we’ve all bought our lawn decorations for International Talk Like a Pirate Day, right? It’s Sept. 19, for those wondering.)

I had a lot of questions.

Who decides these things? Why did Blue Monday coincide with Martin Luther King Jr. day in the United States this year? Can a day be two things at once?

And why are we listening to a travel company – now defunct, by the way – in the first place? Would that fly today? Are there people out there who look to the Trivago guy for words of wisdom?

And another thing – who the hell are they to tell me when I can be depressed? If I want to have a bad day in the middle of July, what’s it to them?

In an attempt to answer at least a few of these questions, I took to the internet – Wikipedia, specifically, which is only slightly more reliable than social media.

That’s where I learned, for example, that this whole sham was created by the aforementioned travel company. It’s also where I discovered that this depressing day only affects those of us in the northern hemisphere, apparently.

It’s also where I found out that, soon after Blue Monday was created, the formula used to determine it was quickly debunked as pseudo-science – that’s ‘fake news’ for those of you still getting your information from Facebook.

But like so much that gets posted on the internet, it caught on, nonetheless.

Further research – and I really put my investigative journalism hat on for this one – also uncovered that inventors of Blue Monday never intended it to sound negative, but instead wanted “to inspire people to take action and make bold life decisions.”

And hey, if some of those bold decisions involve booking an all-inclusive vacation, then great. But as I read to the bottom of the Wikipedia entry, I discovered something else: apparently a ‘Happiest Day of the Year’ also exists as something of a counterweight.

This date is, as you might’ve guessed, also mathematically calculated, but ‘experts’ differ on when it falls. Some say late June, while others insist it’s July 14.

Good news – that’s only 172 days away.

I feel better already.

Nick Greenizan is a reporter at the Peace Arch News.



editorial@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

ColumnHolidays

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

‘Pods’ set up at Surrey homeless centre

Temporary shelter set up in April to help stop the spread of COVID-19

Surrey student earns TD Community Leadership scholarship

Harjot Bal recognized for his One Blood For Life Foundation

Suspect sought in alleged indecent act in South Surrey

Police say incident occurred near 13 Avenue and 131 Street

New Serpentine rail bridge completed in Cloverdale-Sullivan

$3 million crossing replacement marks first of 13 flood-mitigation projects

‘I’m pissed, I’m outraged’: Federal minister calls out police violence against Indigenous people

Indigenous Minister Marc Miller spoke on recent incidents, including fatal shooting of a B.C. woman

Kelowna Mountie who punched suspect identified, condemned by sister

‘How did he get away with this? How is this justifiable?’

PHOTOS: Anti-racism protesters gather in communities across B.C.

More protests are expected through the weekend

Help the ‘Cloverdale Reporter’ continue its mission to provide trusted local news

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Pair accused of ‘horrific’ assault at Vancouver’s Oppenheimer Park at large

Police say Jason Tapp, 30, and Nicole Edwards, 33, did not show up to meet their bail supervisor this week

IHIT names homicide victim found in the Fraser Canyon this week

Police asking for tips into the suspicious death of 29-year-old Alicia Berg

No charges to be laid against 22 northern B.C. pipeline protesters

Twenty-two people were arrested in February, but Crown has decided not to pursue charges

Plan in place for BC Ferries to start increasing service levels

Ferry corporation reaches temporary service level agreement with province

Most Read