By Katherine Wright 

If there’s one phrase nearly everyone has said this month, it would be: “It gets dark so early now!” 

Ah, yes. Boston in the winter. The shortened number of well-lit hours in the day always seems to take us by surprise. This months-long journey of time confusion and exhaustion comes every year, sparked by that one glorious Sunday where we get to sleep in an extra hour. 

But boy, do we pay the price. Taking a nap at 4 p.m.? Prepare to wake up in complete darkness. Have class at 3 p.m.? Prepare to commute in near-complete darkness. Want to go to the grocery store after work? Prepare to arrive in — you guessed it — complete darkness. 

The sky really messes everything up and makes us realize how dependent we are on sunlight. When the sun is shining, we feel obligated to start our day and be productive, but the second it goes down, it automatically must be time for bed. 

I guess I’m an anti-vampire, but instead of bursting into flames or dust or whatever dramatic occurrence happens to a vampire exposed to sunlight, my ability to do homework or be productive vanishes into thin air. It’s 4:30 p.m. and I’m brushing my teeth and settling in for the night, completely confused about what I’m supposed to be doing.

On this note, I figured it would be useful to brainstorm some potential antidotes to these anti-vampire struggles in the darkness of winter:

  1. Garlic: Eat lots of it. Throw it in your soups, smear it on toast, eat it like an apple…  whatever it takes. If garlic is poison to a vampire, it must be fuel to an anti-vampire, right?
  2. Sunlight: The obvious one, but also the most difficult to acquire this time of year. Some potential ways to heighten your intake of sunlight include opening your windows, adding more lights to your room or… waking up earlier. 
  3. Blood: The sustenance of a vampire. So, I guess, don’t drink blood? (Yes. This is definitively good advice. Please follow this.)
  4. Mirrors: I have heard vampires are wary of mirrors, as they might reflect the sun, so try filling your room with a bunch of shiny objects in the hopes that they fill your room with as much light as possible. (Another potential upside to this: create the illusion of a “crowded room” while maintaining social distancing in isolation.) 

Okay, those are all the vampire tropes I can think of — except for bats and pointy teeth and those extremely collared cloaks, which seem unrelated to the issue of minimal sunlight. But it’s definitely always a good idea to avoid bats, I suppose, so do your best with that one as well. 

Anyway, I guess we’re stuck with the winter darkness and the lack of productivity it comes with. To all the other anti-vampires out there, good luck to you. The best we can do is soak in the sunlight while we can, and maybe munch on a clove of garlic every now and then.