S.A.D., TV, and Me

I’m not someone who deals well with change.  You’d know this by what’s in my dining room — a large glass tank containing a wooden hutch, a water bottle, and rodent bedding but no rodent. Our gerbil, Carmella, died a month ago and I can’t bring myself to take her cage down (or remove her from the freezer, where she rests in cold, stiff sleep next to Nibbles the guinea pig, now several years gone.

My S.A.D. kicked in two months ago, and on most days now you can find me walking around in a melancholic, nostalgic fog.  Here’s how bad it can get: I miss the old Cymbalta people.  You know, the various depressed-then-happy people on the commercial for the antidepressant Cymbalta: the African-American woman absently chopping vegetables as she gazes out the kitchen window; the older man whose wife has had enough of his silence at the dinner table and takes her plate elsewhere; the kind-of-cute guy whose neglected dog just wants to be walked; the near-comatose woman sprawled in her covers, unable to get her body out of bed (what;s abnormal about that?). All of them being depressed, then getting better, to a wistful piano song….

I miss them because Cymbalta has recently put on a new commercial, with a new group of people being depressed in various ways. The new dog is just as adorable, and it’s the same plaintive piano song, but something’s not right.  I don’t know these low-energy people neglecting their lives and hating themselves and making their families miserable.  I want the old ones back….

I am buoying myself with the fact that I’ve made it through other traumatic television changes — the exit of Ken Jennings from Jeopardy, for example. And I think I’ve finally made the transition from David Blaine to Criss Angel as my favorite cool magician.  Still, it’s nice to know I’m not alone, that there are others still recovering from the Dick-York- to- Dick-Sargeant switch (or is it the other way around?).

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