It's true! Eminent miseryologists have decreed - in what is a doubtless a scientifically rigorous and peer-reviewed press release - that the third Monday in January is the glummest day of the year for Britons. Hence this headline in the Mail:
The thing is, it's awfully similar to this headline in the Mail:
...which, as you can see from the dateline, appeared on 1 November last year. I pointed out at the time that there seems to be never-ending line of "most miserable" days in the year, creating a steady stream of opportunities for lazy "how to deal with the most miserable day of the year" features in the national press.
If, like me, you're a tragic individual with no life to speak of, it's all rather amusing. But it also raises a semi-serious point. So much of the mainstream press (especially the Mail) are so suspicious and sceptical about the views of scientists - actual scientists, ones who do science and stuff - when it comes to everything from climate change to mass animal deaths. Yet as soon as someone puts out a press release that announces something trivial is "official" in order to gain free advertising for a product or service, they swallow it hook, line and sinker. Why is that?
Or is there actually an important technical difference between depression and misery?