This was going to be a happy blog. Oh dear.
The Winter Solstice, a little ray of hope in the depths of a cold, dark season. From today, the days will start to lengthen again, heralding the promise of life springing anew from the bare earth. A beacon to light the way to better times.
Somehow, this vital spark was missing from the minds of the movers and the shakers at the climate conference in Copenhagen. So much hot air and so little substance, it's so very like our species. Humanity-induced global warming in microcosm. Thanks very much, guys, for another missed opportunity to tackle the thorny problem of sustainability and dwindling resources in the face of unchecked population growth.
Whilst the overwhelming majority of scientists and nations of the world can see the "us" in sustainability, the sceptics and deniers only see the "stain" of conspiracy, and the greedy few shackle the rest of the planet with "inability".
There's too many individuals spending too long in air-conditioned isolation from the outside world, feeding their self interest with huge mouthfuls of short term thinking and quenching their thirst for riches from the polluted seas of commerce. But hey, not to worry, we can all pull together and change the future... well, only if it's manipulating the pop charts. Way to go, people.
Fortunately, for the time being at least, the cycle of life will continue, and as cultures around the Earth begin their midwinter festivals, I raise a glass in celebration of the reborn sun.
Dies Natalis Invicti Solis, indeed.