If it can get Snoopy, is there really any hope for the rest of us?
It is one of my favorite Peanuts clips. There Snoopy is, sitting in the public library reading an obviously enjoyable book. He’s laughing a little ... okay, he’s laughing hysterically, but I have no doubt it’s a really funny book he’s reading. Then suddenly, without warning, poor Snoopy is kicked out the front door, landing squarely on his furry hindquarters. “No Dogs In The Library,” the sign reads.
Snoopy is, quite understandably, in a bad mood over his sudden eviction and proceeds to take it out on Linus and Lucy. He steals Linus’ blanket and beats Lucy senseless in a boxing match, during which he wears a boxing glove on his nose.
Although I don’t usually condone violence by cartoon beagles, Snoopy had good reason to be bent out of shape. Thankfully, I’ve never been kicked out of the library. Sometimes I’m just in a bad mood.
“Looks like somebody woke up on the wrong side of the bed,” my mother used to say to us growing up. I didn’t understand. Was there a wrong side to my Holly Hobby blanket-covered twin bed? How was I to know which side of the bed was right? Or wrong?
Come to find out, I wasn’t the only one puzzled by the saying. Someone actually did a study to determine if there is a right and wrong side of the bed. A study of 3,000 adults found that those who sleep on the left side of the bed are generally more cheerful and positive. After discovering this research tidbit, I got to thinking. Is it the left side when you’re looking at the bed, or the left side when you’re actually in the bed? If I’m looking at my bed, I sleep on the right. If I’m in my bed, I’m on the left. So which is it? Why weren’t they more specific? And how did they determine that those people sleeping on the left side were really in a better mood? And how many hundreds of thousands of dollars or more did it take to conduct a study about the right and wrong side of the bed? And why didn’t they ask me to be in it? I like to sleep.
Now I’m in a bad mood.
“You’re in a bad mood,” my husband will comment on occasion when I don’t feel like talking or am ignoring him on purpose, but trying to act like I just don’t hear him.
“I’m not in a bad mood,” I say.
“Yes, you are,” he says.
“I’m not,” I assure him.
“Yes, you are,” he says.
Then I really am in a bad mood.
Personally, I prefer the word grouchy. It’s short and to the point and the word, itself, kind of says it all. Grouchy. I’ve been known to be grouchy when I’m tired and grouchy when I’m hungry and grouchy when someone asks me if I’m grouchy and I’m not but they keep asking me anyway. That makes me grouchy. Sometimes I’m grouchy just because ... and I’m not ashamed to admit it.
A little grouchy makes the world go round.
Luckily, I’ve always been able to pull myself out of it by taking a nap, eating a cookie or thinking of something really funny. Like Snoopy beating the daylights out of Lucy with a boxing glove on his nose.
Really, who would kick a dog who can read out of the library? Didn’t they realize how great that is? I wish my dog could read. All he does is sleep.
Maybe there’s a study out there somewhere he can join.
Contact columnist Mandy Flynn at firstname.lastname@example.org.