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Mouth off the Month: January

January is for new beginnings

Mouth Off the Month is a monthly article in which our Opinion Editor reviews the previous month and decides whether it was good, bad, or somewhere in between. What will she decide this month? Keep reading to find out!

Jean-Paul Sartre once said, “to read a poem in January is as lovely as to go for a walk in June.” Looking back through the snowy vortex, I can genuinely say I agree. January is a time for saying inside, a time for feeling the heat of a steaming bath sink into your bones. And indeed, a time for reading poetry.

January, for students, is a time of relaxation. We can stay still for the first time in a while, because we’re finally back from whatever plans we had over winter break, and there hasn’t been time to amass a pile of homework in every class yet. It feels like a month detached from reality, where we are both present and not; Schrödinger’s month, if you will.

The weather can be good or bad, depending on your perspective. The cold, dark, wet feeling of the outdoors can throw some people off, but it doesn’t bother me. In January, I often encounter my favourite natural state: fresh snow, undisturbed, muffling the sound around you. This plane of existence is peaceful, and I am never more at home than I am in an empty field of fresh snow.

January is also a time for renewal and reflection. The start of a new year in many cultures, the creation of goals and resolutions; these are things that contribute to introspection. At risk of sounding cheesy or fake deep, January is a month of serenity — but also of work. We return to school, and by association, to purpose. The woes of a directionless December are over, and even though going back to classes seems like a chore, you’re secretly happy for the distraction. It’s okay: you don’t have to be cynical all the time.

Thank you for giving us guidance, January. Where would we be without your straight lines, your fruitless goals? If I could, I would stay forever blanketed by the soft, dense January snow.

Payton Ferguson

Payton Ferguson is a English major by day, 2019-20 Opinion Editor for The Gateway by night (and also day). She enjoys long walks to the fridge, writing until her wrists ache, and bombarding social media with pictures of her chihuahuas.

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