January 31st. This is that awful, oddball day Washington Irving warned us about. The day we all spend too much time watching chimpanzee documentaries and questioning our humanity. This is the day everybody gets paid in big handfuls of Canadian coins and pretends the change feels better scotch-taped to the bottoms of our feet than on the front of our faces.
Many of us woke up this morning and found ourselves permanently confined to life inside a hospital elevator by the great decider. Math equations across the board, all balance out. No remainders, no .666666666 repeating.
What does the American mind make of these irregularities?
Half the population is tempted to throw it all away, run into the forest, and take up a life with the bears and bobcats. They’ll have to cut out their tongues, though. Animals don’t tolerate man’s language, coming as it does from the devil.
This sends most of them back to the hospitality suite at the Holiday Inn Express for a cold continental breakfast and hours of USA Today defacement.
For the other half of the population the discomfort of January 31 is a great excuse for more waffles.