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Event of the week
Brighten your day in the Light Lounge at the Dana Centre
There is a school of thought that credits our climate with putting the ‘Great’ into Great Britain. All those long, miserable days have, over the centuries, paid dividends to our national creative output. Forced to stay indoors for large parts of the year, we’ve found ample time to, for example, rattle off a Chuzzlewit or invent a bagless vacuum cleaner. Compare with a similarly sized, yet more clement nation. Spain, say. There, the lucky citizens can spend their lives frolicking and gambolling in the sunshine. But where does that leave their great literature? Bugger all since Cervantes, it seems. Invented anything recently? Absolutely: the lollipop.
The British indoor life, however, has its obvious downsides. Reclusiveness might be good for our creativity, but there’s a price to pay. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) blights the spirits of half a million Britons at this time of year. Bally good move by the Dana Centre, then, who are offering free 20 minute sessions in their Light Lounge this week.
The Light Lounge contains four specially designed light boxes that are used to treat SAD. Inside there is a circular sofa where you can relax and take in some light treatment in an ambient environment.
If you go along, you might want to consider wearing a T-shirt. The poor fellow who was demonstrating the room on the BBC news had marvellously sweaty pits, thanks to the ultra-bright, and hot, lamps. Its impact on creative inspiration has yet to be assessed, but it certainly creates perspiration.
Well, everywhere else seems to be suffering from SAD. Only the Dana Centre is running a dedicated lecture program at the moment. And they have some good stuff, too. Later today, you can check out their ‘Pub Guide’ to what stuff's made of. We’re not given any specifics, but it sounds fun:
Get your mind into matter, with a hands-on experi-mental night looking at the materials that make our modern world. It's ideal for impressing your mates down the pub or causing chaos in the kitchen at parties.
Tomorrow, you can catch a revue/review of last year’s biggest science stories. ‘The Humour Behind the Headlines’ wonders: ‘Will 2005 go down in history as the year of wild weather, tantalising Titan or poorly parrots’. The show also goes out as a live webcast, so no excuses for missing it.
Finally, next Tuesday, comes a timely presentation on bird flu. Don’t let the media overexposure numb you into flippancy. H5N1 is a great threat. It could change everything, kill millions. We must take it seriously and know what we’re dealing with. The Dana Centre ‘separates fact from fiction’ and considers the consequences of what might very easily become a reality. Go see this lecture. Then go sit in the Black Death room at the Museum of London’s new Medieval Gallery. Scared yet?
Dana Centre’s light lounge, till Friday 13th Jan, 12-8pm, FREE
The Dana Pub Guide to: What stuff's made of, Dana Centre, tonight, 7-8.30, FREE
The Humour Behind the Headlines, Dana Centre, Thursday, 7pm, FREE
Global Pandemics: Should we panic?, Dana Centre, Tuesday, 7pm, FREE