Two weeks today will be the annual ‘Blue Monday‘ bullshit festival, where Cliff Arnall and his “formula” are wheeled out in an attempt to make us believe that it tells us about the most depressing day of the year. However, Mind Hacks is running a competition that may prove a useful antedote and you can enter.
To be fair, the day is usually quite depressing, but only because we have to put up with the usual rubbish masquerading as science in the media.
The whole idea is still being pushed by a PR agency, but rather disappointingly, the respected UK charity the Mental Health Foundation have
seemingly shelled out hard cash for [see update below] the dubious pleasure of using the opportunity to try and promote mental well-being.
Promoting mental health is, of course, a fantastic idea, but using utter gibberish and pseudoscience to do so is like trying to promote a healthy diet by telling people that apples are particularly bad for us on certain days.
So, to help cheer us all up we want you to come up with a formula that describes what total bullshit these formulas are.
Be creative. As with the original formula, don’t feel you have to be chained by the laws of maths, or even logic.
The most creative entry will win a prize. Sent to you where ever you are in the world.
Be careful not to say nasty things about Mr Arnall himself, rumour has it has he a tendency to threaten legal action against people who say things that could be interpreted as casting aspersions on him directly, although it would be perfectly acceptable to point out that his formula is utter nonsense.
You can either include your entry as a comment to this post, post them to your own blog and send us a link, or email me directly via this web form.
Not only will you be helping the public understanding of science through sarcasm, you could win a prize and get featured on Mind Hacks.
We will print the best entries a few days before the date itself.
The game is afoot!
UPDATE Green Communications commented on a later entry to say that the Mental Health Foundation has not paid for this publicity campaign and that it is being completed on a non-commercial basis.