The winter skies are cold and grey, like a naked elephant. And because of this, many people have trouble staying happy during the winter months, even if they eat peanuts. It's time to take your happiness temperature, and good news -- we take it orally! Just answer these multiple choice questions:
1) When you wake up in the morning, do you...
a) Leap out of bed, eager to greet the day
b) Pull the covers back over your head and hope the day goes away
c) Check under the bed for monsters
d) I don't wake up in the morning
2) Your childhood was:
a) Filled with happiness and laughter
b) Years of endless misery and tube socks
c) spent on a pirate ship
d) mostly a blur because you have a terrible memory
3) According to the 2013 World Happiness Report, the happiest country in the world is Denmark, with Norway and Sweden both also coming in the top five. USA was 17th, the last at 156th was Togo. Your reaction?
a) Poor Togo! I wish they could be as happy as I am!
b) If my house were a country, I'd rank 157th.
c) I wonder if Americans should be eating more herring.
d) Yorn desh born, der ritt de gitt der gue, orn desh dee born desh, de umn. Bork! Bork! Bork!
4) When you think about your friends, you...
a) Are grateful to have so many close valuable friendships
b) Don't reallly like talking with either of them.
c) Wonder which My Little Pony they would be.
d) Really hope they like bad jokes.
5) Fill in the blank: "I want to spend my life with someone who makes me ____."
b) hate myself slightly less
c) squeak like a mouse
6) A Harvard study showed that being present and focusing your full attention on a task makes you happier, and that constant distractions and wandering thoughts make you less happy. What do you think about that?
a) It makes perfect sense, since my personal motto is "Live in the moment!"
b) Maybe people who have terrible things to think about just get distracted easier.
d) I got distracted halfway through asking this question. Twice. Seriously.
7) When it comes to your plans for happiness and the future,
a) You know you'll be happy no matter what happens, due to your positive attitude!
b) It doesn't matter what your plans are, because nothing ever works anyway.
c) For the love of god, will someone please invent the holodeck already?
d) It usually involves cheese.
8) Are you happy?
a) Yes! Hooray!
b) Not for a while, now.
c) No, I'mSleepy/Dopey/Sneezey/Grumpy/Bashful/Doc.
d) No, I'm Thorin / Balin /Dwalin /Bifur/Bofur/Bombur/Ori/Dori/Nori/Fili/Kili/Oin/Gloin.
Tally your answers and see which letter you have the most of:
a) You have a permanent smile affixed to your face.
b) Seek help and/or more comedy.
c) You are a delightful individual who deserves to be even happier.
d) GET OUT OF MY BRAIN.
Seth Brown is a humor writer, the author of "From God To Verse," and has actual happiness advice up on his website. His work appears weekly in the North Adams Transcript, and weakly on his site RisingPun.com.