Hendricks County Flyer, Avon, IN

March 15, 2013

The pain and torment of L.I.D.

By Rebecca Todd
CNHI

— As I write this, I cannot feel my toes. My nose is running. My skin is dry and sloughing off layers. I'm cranky and I have a mild case of the blues. I have the urge to pop people in the nose just for smiling and saying, "Cold enough for ya?"

No, I don't have major medical problems. I have what is known as L.I.D. - Living in Indiana Dysfunction. It strikes hundreds of millions of Hoosiers each March, which is really saying something because only about 6.5 million people actually live in Indiana.

A recent study identified Indiana as one of the top 10 most depressing states in the country, according to Health magazine. Indiana ranked number nine in a Gallup poll.

I have a couple of problems with this study. Number one, this is not exactly the prime time of the year to ask people in Indiana if they are happy. This is the time of year when every single person who celebrated when that little, furry con-artist the groundhog said, "Spring is just around the corner!" is ready to make a big hefty batch of groundhog stew. It's been six weeks since he laid that load of crap on us and there's still snow in the forecast. What gives, groundhog? You have some explaining to do. I say we string his little, hairy butt up and ...

Forgive me. My L.I.D. is acting up again.

Second, Hawaiians were ranked as the happiest people in the country. I just have to ask, really? You asked people in California, Florida, and Hawaii how happy they are and they ended up being happier than people in Indiana. And that's making news. Huh. Not exactly science at work there, is it, fellows? Did the fact that we all head to those states this time of year for spring break not clue you in? Do you seriously have to spend taxpayer money to take inane polls? Well, do you?

Oops. There it goes again; Indiana dysfunction rearing its ugly head.

Finally, the results of this poll were based on telephone interviews. That means people were making those random calls that most normal people have blocked, avoid, or have the good sense to curse and hang up when they receive one. That's what normal people do.

Therefore, let me put forth the theory that this poll is based on the opinion of morons. These people sat down and took the time to rate various aspects of their lives on a scale of 1 to 100 for complete strangers who randomly picked their names out of a phone book. That is not something that people with normal functioning brains would do. You don't share that kind of thing with strangers on the phone! You post it on the Internet for the world to read.

Never fear, my fellow L.I.D. sufferers! Soon it will be spring, although much later than that furry, little, soon-to-be-stew critter told us it would be, and the Hoosier funk will dissipate. Our L.I.D. won't be back until August when we just want to pop someone in the nose for smiling and saying, "Is it hot enough for ya?"

- Rebecca Todd is a freelance writer and the author of the book "What's the Point?" available at booklocker.com. Contact her at btodd@tds.net.