Sunday, January 02, 2005

"Happy," You Say?

Sometimes I’m a little on the moody side. My tendency towards moodiness is always exacerbated on New Year’s; a general sense of wistfulness about the past escalates into a full-blown rush of “My god, another year gone, what have I done with it? ” Sort of a Pink Floyd, Shorter of breath, One day closer to death kind of thing. It’s always like that, ever since I was a kid. I always go to parties on New Year’s if possible, because being in a warm friendly social situation reduces the mood considerably. Such it was this year, I went to a fantastic party thrown by my pals Evan and Anne, and had a great time right up to midnight. It was splendid. Anne’s dad makes fruit vodkas that are to die for. I lost three games of cribbage, and tried all manner of alcoholic goodness (in small amounts, as I was the DD for four people.) The trigger for my slew of unhappiness is usually the Times Square Ball Drop--you could call it a sort of Dick Clark’s Rocking New Year’s Depression. (And Dick wasn’t even there this year thanks to a stroke. See?? More depressing than ever!) As the ball drops, so does my mood. This year was true to form, despite plenty of libation and Evan’s famous chili dip, I sank into grouchiness at 12:00:01. Not to say I didn’t still have fun forcing Rat Girl to perform the “straight line walk” and “touch your nose” drunkenness tests before driving home (she didn’t actually need to do it, since I was driving, but it was fun watching her) and seeing the little kids at the party throw streamers at each other. But an inchoate sadness was creepin’ up on me, and by the time we got home I was monosyllabic and irritable. I bounced back a little in the morning as we drove J and C to the airport, but lost it again during what was otherwise a pleasant walk in the woods--mood + asthma = worse mood. I hate feeling limited by my asthma, and these days I'm usually not.... but something on this walk set it off. Not an emergency, but I felt tired and unhappy and pathetic when it set in. Back to that Pink Floyd thing! Usually walking makes me feel better when I'm crabby, but not yesterday. Anyway, the long and the short of it is that when I got home I finally indulged in about 15 minutes of pure feeling sorry for myself. Then I took a hot shower and went over to Jason's to spread the love. Talk, video games, cinnamon scones (courtesy of Brigetta and 5-year-old Max) and a comfy chair do wonders. Went home, had a nap and some dinner, went back and played Bootleggers with J and B and the college boys from 9 til midnight, and New Year's was finally over. I'm pretty much back to normal today.

So does anyone else get down on New Year's, or is it just me? And if you do, what do you do?