November Mojo | A Riff on the Month’s Mojo

November Mojo | A Riff on the Month’s Mojo cover image
On the podcast Thane Calder and Mark Dolynskyj invoke Churchill to try and find the mojo of the year’s penultimate month and ways to get through tough times.

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Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Hello friends. It is November and it's mojo moments. And today we're going to do things a little differently. My smarter half is here and we're going to kick some things around. His name is Mark. Can't pronounce his last name. How do you pronounce your last name again?

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Dolinsky, Mark Dolinsky of the click bait and switch podcast.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

I'll look at you plugging stuff. Anyway, Mark's here. You've heard it before. He's my bro master behind the scenes on Mojo moments. And we're trying something out, where we're just going to kick around a theme once in a while. It's not because we don't have a lineup of people, mojo masters, wanting to be on our podcast.

It just goes occasionally we have to go down a little rabbit hole of our own. And today we're going to rabbit hole on what is considered the least mojo month of the year, November.

You're on the mojo moments. I looked at the data recently. We're up to 8,000.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Unique listeners? Oh, that's pretty good. We're getting there.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

I made that up. I have no idea.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

I just assumed it was you listening on a loop.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

So let's just say you and I are jamming here on mojo for a sec. Okay. We started this off. Maybe we, uh, we didn't actually have the hit the recording button yet, but you're like, so I went for a run. It's November. We're in November, 2020 full COVID full sort of existential crisis in the U S a full economic clouds on the horizon, greens, Greenspan.

The nine-year-old old wizard of banking. Read his article. In fact, I've been reading too many, they call it, there's a word for note doom scrolling. I've been doomed, scrolling too much, my friend. And so, you know, here we are in the Moja show. So it's sort of like the danger of always trying to capture mojo is like, when, what do you do, you know, do you have to be that mojo master yourself? Like, or do do we just embrace the fact that we have shit days.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

I mean, you have to, you have to accept the ups and downs. It's kind of like what Charles de Brabant was saying that you need coping mechanisms. Obviously he was talking about, you know, cancer, but it goes, it's generally like you, when you have a lull in your mojo, you go running, right?

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Yeah. But it's a bit of a drug hit. Like I'm realizing I'm chasing the endorphin. I'm chasing a, you know, I'm doing a bit of cobweb, you know, cleaning of the brain, you know, getting that. And it gives me a good, it lasts a little bit for sure, but I've realized something today running. So just before we jumped on this cast, I went for a run and realized I'm missing something that I had in the first half of COVID.

I shouldn't call it a first off. Cause I don't know when it'll end, but imagine the first half leading up to today's date. So I had, I had running, but I also had a project, painting the guest cottage.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

And what are you doing now? You have a cat.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Yeah. I have a cat, but that's not a project. That's just a...

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

There's no end point.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Yeah. So here's the insight. So that project, when my wife was very excited. Oh, we can paint the best cottage. He'll be a family project, which it was in the beginning, but in her view was three weeks to three months. And as we progress, I lost my teammates, but that was okay. It's not like there was three months of painting.

There was, you know, fits and starts with the painting, but it was, it was, it was, it was a full on paint job and here's the insight. You ready for this dude? Like, are you going to like, Oh my God transformational? Or you're just like, whatever, that's fine. What I realize. So the running, what does the running do?

What does physical do? Gets you moving. That's good. Gives you endorphins. It shakes up the body helps you go to the bathroom. Better. Apparently read about that. So that's one part, but what a project, like say the painting project gave. Sense of accomplishment, industriousness. Um, and most of us in zoom calls or the lives we're living right now, or there's, isn't that feeling of I'm progressing on something.

And it reminded me of, uh, so Winston Churchill. Who technically, I guess I'm related to, cause my middle name is Churchill, but not just because I, you know, my parents want to try and throw that in there's some family link, way, way, way down the line. But reading about Winston Churchill. He had a pretty dark side to him.

I mean, he's, he had a pretty deep form of depression. So he would use booze of course, but he's other thing he called it, I think the dark dog or the black dog. Was his name, his nickname for his, when he was in a dark depression type mood. And his, his solution to that is he'd go off to his, going to call it his cottage, the mansion.

I forget where it was. There's a name, Chartwell, something like that. Don't remember it, it doesn't matter.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Your ancestral home.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Yes. They don't let me in. It's a museum now, but he would go there. And you know what he'd do. He would build brick walls around his property. He do brick lane twos to fight off the darker black dog, whatever you call it.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Yeah, there's that little task, right? There's an ongoing task that you can do. That's somewhat meditative that allows you to sort of disconnect from other things. It's kind of like you're painting. Like it's not overly onerous in terms of mental capacity or even physical demands, but it's something that you can sort of do, you get a sense of accomplishment from it.

You know, and it's, it's somewhat mindless. Bricklaying is also somewhat mindless, repetitive.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

It is mindless. It's meditative. You're right. But there's still a little bit of skill. There's a little, like a little fun thing involved, you know, and you stand back and look at it and go, yeah, that's good. Or, Oh, no, I got to touch that up.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

You see progress.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

So that's, that's my insight. I feel right now. That's the missing link. So I got to find a new thing thing. New project.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

You can paint the office.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

That it's fine. I don't know whatever I didn't ask for ideas. I'm just telling you. I'm sorry. I know you. I know. And that's normally, generally why I'm here.

Yes. So what about you bro? What's going on? You. Yeah, here we are mid November, 2020

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

November sucks though. Like generally speaking as a month, like we were talking about this initially, like this idea of November. Yeah. It's awful. November in Canada, in North America is particularly terrible. The weather is brutal. There's very little to look forward to. No. I was doing some research into this cause we talked about this before.

I was doing a little research and in November, do you wanna know what I found out?

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Yeah. I want to know.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

November sucks. That's what I found out.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Oh yeah. I really like, it's a universal culture.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

You start with the fact that the word November is actually wrong for what the month is. What do you mean wrong? November was the, the way the word breaks down.

It was initially it was for the ninth month. So in the ancient Roman calendar, it was the ninth month of the year. So November was nine some ninth month, but then when the, the, uh, the Julian calendar came in in 45 BC, they added two more. So it was technically no longer the ninth. It was the 11th.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

So it's like a.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Like it's a legacy carry over. It's just wrong. So the name itself is wrong. And I was like, okay, well, that's, that's a rough start for November. I was looking at, you know, Catholicism, the month of November is dedicated to the Holy souls in purgatory. Okay. Well not, no, no, that's it. You're in this level.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

You're actually better off in hell. You know?

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Exactly. You're at least your somewhere. Yeah. Instead of in this middle ground of nothingness and I was like, okay, well, that's, you know, another strike against. Fun fact is that Shakespeare never mentions November in any of his works. 154 sonnets, 37 plays. He never mentioned the month, but maybe he didn't like it,

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

But did he mention months and all his other.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Well, that's the thing. I couldn't find any research. It's like what breaks down when, but you got to think, you know, the ides of March at least appear once.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Anyways, one fact and I'm going to stick to it. That's all the facts I need.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

The landscapes and whatnot.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Anyways, one fact and I'm going to stick to it. That's all the facts I need.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

And I was looking at what else is there? And the full moon is actually a fun name for the full moon in November, here in North America, it's called the Beaver moon.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

In North America or Canada?

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

North America. So it was for like the, like Algonquin tribes, uh, and early colonists used to set their last Beaver traps of the year because after that, the waterways start freezing up and the beavers go away.

So it was obviously incredibly important for Canadian history with the, uh, the fur trade. So, this is like the last moment you can catch Beaver pelts. And it was also the moment when the beavers are most winter ready making the bee rebels really important. So the November moon is a Beaver moon. So that's kind of funny, but other than that, this one sucks.

Like nothing, nothing good is in November.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Well, there was that whole Movember's movement of growing mustache.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Sure, there's that

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

But you know what that is, is just like dudes looking really ugly. Well, yeah, unless you're,

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

There's a lot of other times of the year where you can't get away necessarily with growing a mustache, like in February for Valentine's day.

And you've got like halfway through the month, you've got a shitty mustache going, going out on romantic dates. You know, your Christmas parties, everyone's got a mustache. Like you can't do it in certain months. You can't just have everyone in hideous mustaches.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

It's so funny for when our kids were little. It's like every family goes through this where they hire the photographer to, have you done that. Okay. So we did that and we did two, two years in a row. When we early, early days of November here at cloud Raker, we were like the first ones doing Movember and we all got into it. And for whatever reason, two in a row, my wife decided to hire the photographer, the family pictures of us with the little kids.

And then do the Christmas card out of it. And I'm like, and it'd be like, not the end of November, but kind of like second, third week. So I got those bad, like, you don't know if it's a mustache.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

It's not a polished mustache.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Yeah. Just impale. Genuinely people will come up to me and go, you look really tired. And I'm like, actually, no, I'm not.

I'm just, just really. Like pale, like, I don't know what's going on. So she would choose November mid twice, and then we never did it again. So in the, in, in our sort of photo books of pro family photos, Yeah. There's two years of me looking absolutely hideous.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

I did it for two years, I did the year I did my master's degree at the university of Toronto.

And the year after, when I got my degree, my master's degree, I went to the ceremony, which was in November. So the photos of me graduating with my master's degree, I have is disgusting mustache. It's the only time in my life that I have a mustache. It's like two weeks of the year, once the year, before and that week.

And I have obviously my graduation photos have a mustache.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

So I think we have something in common. So we're, we're getting excited. We're seeing maybe something exciting in November.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Well, the, like I was, I was trying to find the silver linings of it. And I was thinking like, I want to pop culture next. And I was like, is there anything in November or that references November?

And the only thing that I could find, there are two things like movie song wise, I thought really crossed over. One was the, uh, obviously the movie with Keenu Reeves sweet November, Charlise Theron. I don't, I'm so bad with the name Bobby, but then there's also November rain by guns and roses. And that's it. That's it.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Okay. No, but let's okay. Here's here's I dunno, silver lining. I believe

I'm going to put this out there. That underlying mojo is melancholy. Okay. It's like when you're painting, you kind of need. Sometimes and not painting the walls of the home and pretending you're on a canvas and I'm pretending I'm a painter and I'm not.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

The landscapes and whatnot.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Yeah. You kind of need, you need the contrast.

You need a bit of that. That, and November is not a, I love the word melancholy. It's a melancholic month.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Cause it's a terrible month.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

No, no. Okay. I'll go. I'll go with your terrible terrible month. I had a moment. And for all our listeners who are vegetarians out there, I'm sorry to say this, but I do go duck hunting.

Okay. And a few years ago, I was in, in, in Quebec here duck hunting and, and it was a, it was a November early November day, crispy, cold, uh, no more leaves on the trees, because up here in Canada, we lose our leaves earlier. And it was just these gray trees. And then in, I was in the sort of marshes and all the little branches and stuff were all gone Brown.

And there's a, it was a bit of frost across some, so I, yes, it was this sort of emptiness and there wasn't a drop of sound. There was no wind, it was just, and I looked across and there was these, I don't know what you call it. I should know the names of these, these little, you know, those. You know, Chris's timing by the little branches with the little red sort of berries.

I can't eat that. You get sick, but they, they look pretty. So I looked across and I saw Bush of those and I was like, that's nice because then the contrast of this melancholic colic mood of what I'm looking at, there's this little patch of red that pops up.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

 A polly?

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

No, it isn't, I don't know what don't, don't go fancy on me. It is just what it is. These little red things. The point of my story is it's the first time I liked November was that moment.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

 Because, and even in the bleakness, in the darkness, you saw that little glimmer of hope and light through the red berries on the trees.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Perhaps. That's how I would put it. If I was eloquent.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

I mean that's that's what I mean, we keep coming back to that. Like, you can only sort of see the positives after experiencing the negatives at the same time. November is such a brutal month. It's it's. I just find this month is incredibly solemn at all times.

I don't know. Maybe it's just the Canadian thing. Like you finished you finish Halloween. Then eventually it's remembrance day, which is a very solemn day where we honor those who have fought and perished and you know, all that. Then you sort of get American Thanksgiving and like the gluttony and, and crass consumerism from the Americans,

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

By the way, they've ruined Thanksgiving.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

They have,

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

I actually think, you know, I'm not going to be mr. Canada here, but that's the one. Thing for sure. We do way better. Well, there's maybe

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Ours is a celebration of the harvest during the harvest season.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

There's is just like go buy a lot of shit.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

 Yeah. No wrapped around this whole, like how we abused the settlers, the settlers abused, the indigenous populations.

It's like, Oh, great. So you got the crass consumerism there and everything is cold. Everything is wet. Everything is miserable. You don't get any light because the sun goes down at like four 30 in the afternoon.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

You don't have snow on the ground. Like, you know, snow on the ground is a bit of brightness.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

 Exactly. You can't do the winter activities. Cause winter hasn't actually started yet. It is like the, the end of the decay of the year before the beautiful rebirth that is, you know, the Christmas season, the start of winter.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

So where are we taking this mojo cast? Like, is this. Is this the moment where we're telling everyone that there are anti mojos?

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

 Well, there are anti mojos, but you know, like after we've outlined just how brutal this month is. Do you want to know what the silver linings are within the month of

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

By the way, people are paying way too much these days.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Silver lining?

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

 Oh yeah. Here's a silver lining of the pandemic. Oh yeah. No. What about the gold linings? Like why silver? Let's go with the gold lines.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Cause it's not quite great. It's kind of like, Hey, you know, it's a little less crap. This thing.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

That's why it's called silver?

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

 I think it's a silver lining behind every dark cloud. There's a silver lining or whatever.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Yeah, I, I know the expression,

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

But guess it's not like there's sunshine. It's just that there's a silver lining anyways. There's actually some secret hidden mojo of November and November has one of the lowest birth rates of the calendar year.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

So that's good.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

 It's interesting. The fact that like there's February has the least amount of births. Probably because the month shorter.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

No, but you just said November does

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Is one of the, one of the least common. So it's, it's February followed by December and then November is the third. Um,

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Okay. Let's do the math. So when nine months prior to that, we are in March, no February. That means people are making babies. February, February, which is weird. Cause that's like Valentine's month.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Yeah, maybe it doesn't kick in until March.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Anyway, most Valentine's sucks, but maybe that's why they end up in a fight because he didn't actually remember. Or   didn't book the restaurant on time. Hey, so, sorry.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

 Anyway, that's your fault. That's why recounting some past experiences, but that month, those people born between September and November are most likely to pass the age of 100, have one of the lowest rates of clinical depression.

And are actually some of the strongest newborns. And the thought on that last piece is that because those births, the mothers during that debt gestation period it's during, and he was in North America during the summer period. You get longer days of sunlight, you're more vitamin D you generally speaking are out more, more active, um, eating well for the mothers, the mothers.

So during that gestational period, you actually build a stronger baby. You have fewer of them. They get born in November, but the ones that are born November and of being, having happier longer lives.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Did you read this? Are you making some research? So I think you've missed them as obvious reason why they're happier.

Cause they're the only ones that like get a birthday. So they get like some mojo in the middle of the crappy month. They got a birthday to look forward to put that anymore. But when you're younger, it's like pretty top man. It's up there with Halloween and Christmas man is, is a birthday when they're little and then they love that stuff.

Sure. But there's also Christmas and Halloween. Yeah, maybe they're just still on their sugar, high from Halloween. I'm just telling you. That's why they're happy is that they have at least something in November to look forward to.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

I guess.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

 Oh, so you, you like all your science, but mine is not holding up here.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

I dunno. I just find, I don't, I'm not a huge fan of birthdays. Are you?

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Well now I don't give a crap, but when I,

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

 When did that stop for you?

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

I saw when I was at seven, because my birthday is in the middle of summer. And I was like, this sucks. Cause like, like,

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

No one's around.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Yeah. And you know, in school you would get some attention for the day. Like, you'd get, I remember in elementary school we you'd write their names on a chalkboard and get like a cupcake from the teacher. You know,

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Didn't you have to bring your own cupcakes.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder





No, that, well, I don't know. No, the teacher,

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Your mom had to bring like a giant tray of cupcakes and one for the entire class.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

I don't know my birthday's in the summer.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

Anyway. So any other silver linings in November?

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

Anyway. So any other silver linings in November?

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

No, that's it that's really all I got, it was really tough to find. It took a good while to find any of that.No, that's it that's really all I got, it was really tough to find. It took a good while to find any of that.

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

No, that's it that's really all I got, it was really tough to find. It took a good while to find any of that.No, that's it that's really all I got, it was really tough to find. It took a good while to find any of that.

Mark Dolynskyj
Mark Dolynskyj

The silver linings of November,

Thane Calder
Thane Calder

 Kinda. So I'd like to thank everybody for tuning into the mojo moments exchange between Mark and Thane. and I'm your host. Most of the time. Thane Calder

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