T3: Rise of the Maniacal Giggles

We’re just about halfway (!) through the winter season here at McMurdo and, for better or worse, I appear to have T3 syndrome. It’s a problem for a lot of winter-overs and is believed to be caused by a number of factors, including lack of sunlight, lack of new stimuli, low vitamin D levels and possibly hormonal fluctuations.

How does T3 manifest itself?

Well, here are a few anecdotes. On Sunday, setting up the hot line for brunch, it took me several minutes to figure out why nine pans would not fit in eight wells. A short while later, while setting out the serving utensils, I stood in front of the pancake well with a spoon in my hand, aware that the spoon was not the appropriate utensil but unable to figure out why, or that I should just go grab a pair of tongs already.

Today I had a great deal of difficulty asking my coworker if he’d taken my bucket of soapy water. The word “bucket” danced at the edges of my mind the way an obnoxious child teases a dog on a tether. If I could just… reeeeeach…it….

Anyway, T3 is temporary and will go away once the sun returns (so much for all the vitamin D I’m taking, which is also supposed to help). But quite frankly, I’m in no rush to recover. Along with the inability to figure out how to serve pancakes, I’m experiencing a weird euphoria. Everything is funny. And the few things that are not really funny to me, well, I find I just don’t care about ’em. Wheee! It’s like getting buzzed without drinking, or those sweet, sweet days when I shattered my arm and got four months of blissful OxyContin for the pain.

It’s made all the rejection letters I’m getting for my novel much, much more fun.

Whether it continues till the end of the season is unknown. Some people have spells of it, others sink into a state where communication is largely by grunts and gestures. I don’t know what will happen to me, and, ya know, I don’t care.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going back to watching tv and laughing over Michelle Bachman announcing her intention to run for President. Is it me or is that just really, really funny?

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