22 Jan is reckoned the worst, most depressing day of the year. This week is as bad as it gets. Nodding in agreement? Reasons to be cheerless, according to Dr Cliff Arnall of Cardiff university are: weather, debt, time since Christmas, time since failing new year’s resolutions, low motivational levels and the feeling of a need to take action.
Here at the GFG-Batesville Shard we max out on Nordic gloom in January. We use the gloom to inform realistic appraisal. We’ve been brooding about not going forwards, just round and round in circles, blogging about the same old same old time and time again, not getting anywhere or being useful. Is it time to do a Hayley and call it a day? It may be. It was fun while it lasted. How liberating to be free of it.
Out this week: the annual CDAS report on the cost of funerals. Various radio stations rang. I looked for a new angle but found there none. I did the same interviews I’ve done time and time over. Same old same old.
And then there was the Hayley thing on Corrie. I didn’t follow the build-up to the suicide so I can’t judge its usefulness in making people aware of the issues and stimulating debate. But I did watch last night’s episode where Hayley’s body was taken away by the men in black macs. It was probably the most depressing thing to happen in this week in January ever. The researchers hadn’t done their job. The doctor’s paperwork was wrong. Roy didn’t want to let Hayley go. We weren’t told that he had a choice, that he had a legal right to care for her body at home. We weren’t made aware that there are undertakers who would have helped him do that. The ‘private ambulance’ (possibly the vilest euphemism in the English language) was summoned because “it’s what ‘appens.” Reduced to helpless bystander, Roy stood aside as the wordless corpse-collectors (well cast) carried off the love of his life. He wasn’t even invited to help. It was possibly the worst home removal in the history of undertaking.
Here was an opportunity to empower viewers. All it did was reinforce the dependency culture together with every negative feeling anyone has ever entertained concerning the dismal trade. The funeral will be led by a humanist. Let’s hope something good will come of that.
Happy January, everybody.
PS This is the GFG document about legal rights, downloadable from the website. If you spot any errors or omissions, do please let us know. Your legal rights and responsibilities.