Jan. 17, 2011 at 10:48 AM ET
Mondays are the worst. January is also the worst. And according to some, today is the worst day in the worst month of 2011. Welcome to Blue Monday.
As CBS New York and other news outlets are reporting it, a British psychologist has developed an equation showing that the third Monday in January is the most depressing day of the year. (That very important and not at all made-up equation takes into account weather, debt, time since Christmas, time since screwing up on our New Year's resolutions, low motivational levels and the feeling of a need to take action, according to a press release issued by the UK's Mental Health Foundation in 2009. Science!) This morning, Blue Monday was a top trending topic on Twitter, just below Martin Luther King, Jr., Day and above the Golden Globes.
But! A quick bit of Internet sleuthing shows today may not be as dreary as it initially appeared. First, according to the "Bad Science" column in the UK newspaper The Guardian, the whole "blue Monday" idea is attributed to psychologist Cliff Arnall of Cardiff University; in 2005, his name was attached to a press release describing the Blue Monday equation. But the newspaper later printed a correction requested by the school, saying that Arnall was actually just a former part-time tutor at the university. And even according to Arnall's own equation, we have a week to go until the real Blue Monday arrives.
Bottom line: Sometimes things you read on the Internet aren't true. Now that's a real downer.
Feeling bluer than usual today? Could it be because you're working on this national holiday? Do tell.