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COMMENTARY
winter solstice
(MorgueFile.com)

In case you didn’t realize it this past weekend, winter kind of sucks. Good news prevails, however, as today is the winter solstice.

What does that mean? Well, aside from it representing the rough date by which I attempt to burn all my dead pepper plants in a backyard bonfire, the winter solstice essentially marks the shortest day of the year for those of us in the northern hemisphere. Moreover, at 4:44 a.m. today, it meant the North Pole was tilted its furthest from the sun. As a result, the sun will set later over the coming days of winter.

More daylight ahead

I’ve written about time and the machine before, specifically how early winter darkness can breed depression, contempt and body-clock confusion. I have lost track of how many times this month the black nightmare that is 6 p.m. has tricked me into thinking it’s time for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

But today, with the winter solstice upon us, we can take solace in the fact that the sun will be setting later as we dredge on through this most confusing of winter seasons.

According to Weather.com, the sun will set today in Oklahoma City at 5:22 p.m. By New Year’s Eve, just 10 days away, the sun will set at 5:28 p.m. Over that same period, sunrise will move from 7:37 a.m. to 7:40 a.m. That’s a net of three precious, bright minutes and an addition of six minutes to the end of the day.

Your extra minutes of sun

So what will you do with your extra minutes of afternoon sunshine this week? It might still be a little too cold to stick your toes in the grass, but there are many other options as well.

As for me, I’m considering trying to practice a few minutes of mindfulness each day. Pardon me if I don’t get your email immediately.

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William W. Savage III holds a journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma. He covered two sessions of the Oklahoma Legislature for eCapitol.net before working in health care for six years. He is a nationally certified Mental Health First Aid instructor.