Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

Columns

December 5, 2007

HERB HUNTER: Are you SAD about winter?

Avid readers of my column know how I feel about the upcoming winter solstice and the anticipation of longer days.

Quite simply, I can’t wait for the daylight hours to reverse their present trend and begin to extend. It’s not because I’m a sub-par golfer, use solar energy to power the television in our home or look forward to more opportunities for yard work. As my lovely wife, Julia, will attest, I cannot stand yard work.

I am driven by a desire for daylight so overwhelming that I have gone as far as to support the concept of Daylight Savings Time in this very column. That’s right, a subject as divisive to Hoosiers as abolition during the Civil War, DST, has been promoted by yours truly in this very column.

Why? What type of madness could possibly justify such an extreme position? At worst, it may be a form of madness but, at the very least, it is a disturbing mental condition that can manifest itself through physical symptoms. The torment in some unfortunate victims may be excruciating to the point of seeking relief through any means possible. This includes staring at glowing light bulbs, firmly grasping travel brochures from Hawaii and supporting extreme political concepts that involve changing every clock in your home twice each year. Of course, I refer to the “winter blues,” more commonly known as Seasonal Affective Disorder, appropriately given the acronym of “SAD.”

I admit it. I don’t like winter. However, it’s not because of the miserable weather, freezing temperatures and endless ice but rather the long, long, nights and lack of daylight. To be honest, I don’t know if I have a clinical case of SAD, but many of us suffer from some of the symptoms during the winter months.

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