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A few laughs to help you get through Blue Monday

PUBLISHED: 07:00 20 January 2019

Actor Leslie Nielsen, with actress Jeannette Charles,  portraying the Queen of England, in a scene from the Blue Monday dispeller The Naked Gun. Picture: AP Photo/Paramount Pictures, Elliott Marks, File.

Actor Leslie Nielsen, with actress Jeannette Charles, portraying the Queen of England, in a scene from the Blue Monday dispeller The Naked Gun. Picture: AP Photo/Paramount Pictures, Elliott Marks, File.

January 21 is designated Blue Monday. Christmas is over, the credit card bills are in, the weather’s rubbish and you don’t get paid until the last day of the month. Here are some tips to get through it.

"You can't marry Osgood." "Why, you think he's too old for me?" Jack Lemmon (Jerry/Daphne) gets carried away by in Some Like It Hot. Picture: United Artists

Blue Monday is on January 21. Why is it such a sad day?

It all started in 2005 when psychologist Dr Cliff Arnall sent out a press release that stated that January 18 was the most depressing day of the year and that this had been calculated using several factors such as weather, debt and motivational levels.

The formula (there has to be a formula) is [W + (D-d)] x T^Q} ÷ [M x N_a], where W is the weather, D is debt, d = monthly salary, M = motivational levels Na is the feeling of need to take action. The equation does not stand up to close scrutiny but who doesn’t a bit of pseudo maths to back up despondency.

What is a person to do on Blue Monday? There’s a choice, you can embrace it and, indeed, enhance it by staying indoors and listening to miserable music... or maybe watching Jeremy Kyle, that has to be a downer.

That scene in When Harry Met Sally, starring Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan, Photo: Columbia Tri-StarThat scene in When Harry Met Sally, starring Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan, Photo: Columbia Tri-Star

Others try to offset the blues by making it a happy day and, without wishing to detract from the wretchedness of those who take a melancholy view (they can stop reading now) here are a number of ways to cheer yourself up... although this is a personal selection and you may need to tailor your own choices.

The comedy show moments. Revisit these ones and laugh yourself silly. The one where:

• Delboy falls through the pub counter (Only Fools and Horses)... oh, and the one when the crystal chandelier falls and smashes

• Ronnie Barker goes into the hardware store and asks for four candles followed by a number of misunderstood purchase. Or the one where he gives an address from the president of the society for the “Relief of Suffers from Pismronunciation, for the relief of people who can’t say their worms correctly, or who use the wrong worms entirely.” (The Two Ronnies)

The one where... Joey (Matt le Blanc (pictured left)) is bewildered in the evergreen American sitcom FriendsThe one where... Joey (Matt le Blanc (pictured left)) is bewildered in the evergreen American sitcom Friends

• Caroline Aherne gives the weather forecast in The Fast Show. Her precedent allows us all to go out into the blazing sunshine on the first morning of a holiday on the Costa Brava and announce: “Eth, eth, eth, eth, eth - scorchio!”

• In which Mr Bean redecorated his bedroom by exploding a tin of paint (Mr Bean)

• The It’ll Be Alright on the Night clip in which a dog slides down a hill on its bum

• Joey (Matt LeBlanc) finds out that in all the years he has been measured for suits, his tailor has been inappropriate when measuring his inside leg (Friends)

• The young private (Ian Lavender) in the Walmington-on-Sea Home Guard platoon is asked his name by a German naval officer (Dad’s Army). Captain Mainwaring steps in and replies: “Don’t tell him, Pike.”

• Matt Lucas is gormless schoolgirl Vicky Pollard (“yeh but no but yeh... but no”) in Little Britain.

• The Vicar of Dibley (Dawn French) eats three Christmas dinners and is so stuffed she has to get a taxi home... about 100 yards.

• The Second World War airmen discuss their missions in Armstrong and Miller.

• The one in Alas Smith and Jones where Mel Smith is a mourner who falls into the grave - slapstick gold

• Lucille Ball attempting and failing to get into a hammock in the 50s show I Love Lucy - all done for real.

Film moments we love:

•The famous restaurant scene in When Harry Met Sally (The one with the heavy breathing and the pay-off line: “I’ll have what she’s having”)

Don't tell him, Pike. Dad's Army is a winter warmer for Blue Monday. Picture:  PA PhotosDon't tell him, Pike. Dad's Army is a winter warmer for Blue Monday. Picture: PA Photos

• The scene in Bowfinger when a petrified actor (Eddie Murphy) has to run across several lanes of fast-moving traffic for several takes.

• Springtime for Hitler number from Mel Brooks’ The Producers - in the worst possible taste but very camp and very funny.

• Airplane: The appearance of the (inflatable) automatic pilot - probably best not to go into too much detail.

• Naked Gun: Once you start laughing at this movie, it’s difficult to stop. But I like the one about playing our song, “one more time” and the song? Ding Dong the Witch is Dead

Dawn French as Geraldine Granger in the Vicar of Dibley. Picture: BBC/PA WireDawn French as Geraldine Granger in the Vicar of Dibley. Picture: BBC/PA Wire

• Indiana Jones, dealing with a sword-twirling assailant by pulling out a gun in Raiders of the Lost Ark.

• The scene in Some Like it Hot when Jerry (Jack Lemmon dressed as a woman) gets carried away and comes back to the hotel room to announce that he’s engaged to Osgood.

• Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein - the song and dance routine featuring the monster in black tie, Putting on the Ritz.

If you’re not inclined to watch films or comedy shows why not exercise the little grey cells with this one. The Washington Post asks readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition. Here are some of the winning entries from 2005. (www.fun-with-english.co.uk)

Reintarnation: Coming back to life as a hillbilly.

Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period.

Inoculatte: To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.

Glibido: All talk and no action.

Meanwhile, don’t forget those home comforts: jam on toast; cheese straws; chocolate; banana custard; Ben and Jerry’s ice cream; clotted cream rice pudding; getting into your pyjamas as soon as you get home from work; snuggle on the sofa; nestle under a fleecy blanket.

No Blue Monday here.

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