There Is A Light That Always Goes Out

The lady at my liquor store is a delightful woman in her mid-fifties who always beams brightly and is never particularly concerned about whether or not you’ve got exact change.

I was down there just now and it was pretty crowded for the middle of a Thursday afternoon. (The fact that I know the retail patterns of liquor stores in the middle of a Thursday afternoon is an entirely different matter.)

“You’re busy,” I said to her.

She nodded her head.

“The last three days,” she smiled. “Maybe the weather.”

That’s as good an answer as any, I guess. We all have our reasons for why we drink: We’re depressed. We feel as if we haven’t succeeded in even the modest goals we’ve set for ourselves. We’re nervous. We over-analyze the most rudimentary aspects of life, imbuing each detail with imagined tragedy when the sheer facts of living are tragic enough. We feel awkward. We are sad and alone. We like the taste. Reasons, we have plenty.

But in weather like this, yes, we drink. Have you noticed how dark it is in the mornings now? You lay there in bed, coaxing yourself to give it another shot while totaling up the happinesses and disappointments in your time on this earth thus far. The disappointments never come up short, and the ledger is always balanced in the favor of sorrow. You sigh, you pull yourself up, you turn on the light, and it starts over again. It’s all gray and the dusk comes early. Some days it rains. It’s hard to even try.

Daylight Saving Time ends this weekend. I can’t ever figure out whether we lose an hour or gain an hour, but this is the one where you turn time back. In the end it doesn’t make a difference: That hour will catch up with you one way or another. So will the darkness. That’s how life is. That’s why we drink. Anyway, don’t forget about the clocks.

Photo by blastobutter, from Flickr.