Chris Erskine: The January Blahs Are A Thing. I Kind Of Like Them.

By Chris Erskine
Los Angeles Times

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Chris Erskine shares thoughts on the month of January, when the sparkle of December gives way to the gloomy days of winter.

Los Angeles Times

In January, a house is a million little things. The kettledrum thump of the furnace kicking on. The burned coffee smell when you yank the pot out a little too early and the last few drips sizzle on the heating plate. The booming echo of a shower door.

Add in quirky people, quirky traits and you get the full family symphony. Not a good symphony. Just three movements, all out of tune.

People, eh? We live in stubborn, caustic times. I was grumbling the other day how our little newspaper, once as jovial as a college campus, has grown less friendly over the years.

To me, acknowledgment is such a simple gesture. Look up from your phone, note the person passing, fake a nice nod.

It’s not such a difficult thing.

Basic civility used to be taught at home and school, but that was in the days before our little Einsteins were primped, coddled and treated like celebrities.

I’m pretty sure there are kids today who have never said thank you.

Perhaps our increasingly cold and unwelcoming ways are tied to this. Or, perhaps it’s the nature of popular entertainment. TV is wonderful, but loaded with dark and dysfunctional shows, and our movies are all so cynical and loud.

And when was the last time you heard a love song?

It’s as if we’re afraid of hope and happy endings.

If I’m wrong, I’m wrong, and I often am. But on this particular issue, probably not. I must sound like your grandpa. Truth is, I like grandpas more and more.

Or maybe it’s just a seasonal thing, the warmth and sparkle of December giving way to gloomy middle winter.

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