Monday, December 05, 2011

A Charlie Brown Depression

I realized a few years ago that I'm subject to wintertime seasonal depression, and when I felt it coming on this year around Thanksgiving, I decided that exercising every day would help fight it. And sure enough, it is helping.

This evening on the treadmill, though, I was flipping channels as usual and happened upon the annual broadcast of "A Charlie Brown Christmas." Several years ago I wrote about how I loved "Peanuts" when I was a kid, but later became repelled by its unrelenting pessimism, which all too well captured what life was like for me as a child. To that I can only add the opening words of the script, which echoed tonight like the prelude to a recurring bad dream:

CHARLIE BROWN: I think there must be something wrong with me, Linus. Christmas is coming, but I'm not happy. I don't feel the way I'm supposed to feel.

I just don't understand Christmas, I guess. I like getting presents, and sending Christmas cards, and decorating trees and all that, but I'm still not happy. I always end up feeling depressed.

LINUS: Charlie Brown! You're the only person I know who can take a wonderful season like Christmas, and turn it into a problem.

Breaks my heart every time.

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