Allan Mayer’s Weblog

Posts Tagged ‘Seasonal Affective Disorder

In a conversation with my confidence coach, Lynn Grocott, ( ) she suggested that I could look at Seasonal Affective Disorder in a different way if I changed its name. Whoever coined a phrase that matched so perfectly with its acronym must have been very pleased with themselves, but the fact that it’s known as SAD doesn’t help.

I suggested ‘Barney Bear Syndrome.’ Remember the cartoon where Barney Bear sets his alarm clock for Spring, then just can’t get to sleep? By the end he has bloodshot eyes, and the mania which comes from sleep deprivation is setting in. Well this time of year I start to feel like that, and to crave the coming of spring. If you want to know what I look like right now, just take a look at the cartoon: The Bear That Couldn’t Sleep. (My name even appears in the first frame…)

One of the side effects of SAD is lack of concentration and poor memory… no… two of the side effects… what was I saying? Well anyway, anyone who knows me will probably tell you that my memory is just as bad during the Summer (and you can imagine how I laugh at that one.)  But in the Winter months it is much more pronounced. It usually drives my wife to distraction, apart from earlier this week when I bought her a bottle of brandy, only to find an identical bottle in the cupboard which I’d bought two days earlier.

As I’ve said before on this blog, I try to keep things light here (apart from in exceptional circumstances, as happened a week ago) but if anyone would like to read more about SAD (or BBS!) go to: ezine articles.

I was intending to do a follow up article… but just couldn’t be a***d…. I feel like that a lot these days. Roll on Spring…

And if you really want to annoy a BBS  (SAD) sufferer say something like:

1. Professor so-and -so says it doesn’t exist or

2. We all feel like that this time of year.

3. There are worse things… ( of course I know that- I say it to myself, and it makes me even sadder thinking about them.)

Just call me a miserable old git- that I can cope with.

Foul because…

I suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder. I have it well under control with the right combination of drugs, diet and a ‘Dawn Simulator’ in my bedroom, but one thing I can’t seem to control is that my immune system is absolutely pants at this time of year. What with our foster child being sick in the night, and all sorts of things going around at work it was inevitable that I should eventually pick up something. So I’ve spent the afternoon sleeping and starving myself (which can’t be a bad thing) but now I’m bored, so turn my aching fingers and bleary eyes to my laptop…

Fair because…

What do I find in ‘Laptopland?’ (hmm… I feel a ‘Land of Counterpane’ parody coming on,) I find that good things have been happening as I slept.

Firstly:  people have actually been downloading my free PDF ( ) which makes me feel a lot better because I now feel useful.

Secondly: I have been adding my details to various book sites over the past few nights. I hadn’t intended to blog about this yet, as I hadn’t expected results so soon, but so far there have been the following:

I put my bio and links on and within a day it came up on Google. I added info to and got a referral from there to my blog.

Best of all: Last night I uploaded my prologue to (there doesn’t seem to be a facility for this so I put it under ‘short story’) and today got this from Matt Arnold:

 While I can’t tell much about the book from here, I checked it out on your website. It sounds like a wildly creative premise upon which to base a story. This is a solid set up. Just ordered it.

The other piece of good news is that Amazon are now displaying no cover for ‘Tasting the Wind’ (rather than the cover to ‘My Brothers’ Keepers’  (have they changed yours now Scott?) so I am expecting the real cover to appear soon. Once this has happened, and I’ve received my copies, I will at last be able to get on with marketing.

Watch this Space…


I seem to have got to that age where medical issues have become a normal topic of conversation, so…

Interesting Medical Fact Number 1: I’ve just had a mole removed from my back. No, not a fluffy little creature (I just like the picture, and thought you’d rather see it than a skin blemish.) It changed colour and shape when I was on holiday, so I went to see the Doc, who said it had to come off.

The procedure was painless. And afterwards the Doctor gave me the scissors and other implements he had used. Apparently sterilisation is no longer good enough because of superbugs, so they would only throw them away. It occurs to me that I could commit the perfect crime- all of the clues would point to someone who has access to surgical instruments. And now I’ve told you, I’ll have to kill you… and eat your wife.

Interesting Medical Fact Number 2: My Dad has just had his second knee replacement. The first was done in a BUPA hospital, the second in an NHS hospital. The procedure, the staff, the food and the aftercare were all far superior from the latter.

interesting Medical Fact Number 3: Seasonal Affective Disorder has kicked in earlier and affected more people this year because the British Summer was duller and grottier than ever. I know, because I get it. I like to keep my blogs lighthearted, so if you want to read more on this subject check out my ezine article at:—A-Personal-Perspective&id=1511457

2007 was an annus horribilis…

Things just seemed to go wrong. I actually put a blog on my MySpace page entitled ‘Victor Meldrew Week,’ because of the number of times in one week I said the words ‘I don’t believe it!’

People I cared for died. I was in a car accident which wrote off my car and left me with whiplash. My wife had to leave her Primary School Headship due to ill health. My hobby of amateur dramatics had for one reason or another stopped being fun, and I seemed to be getting nowhere in my quest to publish ‘Tasting the Wind.’

I felt a need to make changes, to regenerate, but didn’t know where the energy to do so was going to come from. I haven’t mentioned yet a sad fact about my life which is my obsession with the T.V. programme Dr. Who. I find the idea of regeneration fascinating, and think of it as a modern myth representing the changes that we all need to make at points in our lives in order not just to stay alive but to really live.

The other thing I haven’t mentioned is that some years ago I was diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder. I don’t know if it was anything to do with the fact that the Summer of that year had failed to happen, but when it got to October my SAD symptoms kicked in with a vengeance- tiredness, low mood, anxiety. It’s like watching twenty four hour reruns of ‘Eastenders.’

It was sometime in November when I was checking my emails that I found that someone had sent me a message through MySpace.

It was entitled ‘Can we join forces?’

The message claimed to be from someone called Lynn, who went to the same school as me, and now wanted to be my friend on MySpace. l wasn’t in the mood for making friends with anyone. I remembered David Tennant’s Doctor, grieving after leaving Rose in a parallel universe, (non-afficianados please bear with me) then suddenly finding that there was a strange mad woman in his Tardis.

That’s all I need- a stalker.

I popped downstairs to refill my glass, and mentioned the message to my wife. She suggested it might be someone after money.

Of course! The profile mentioned fundraising.

Then I saw it. This lynn was not only a fundraiser, she was a public speaker. And not only that. She was an author. A published one. Someone who had been published was trying to contact me…

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