Oh, winter. I hate your stupid face. Okay, I guess you don’t have a face, but if you did, I would hate it so hard. I have some readers out there who are not familiar with “real winter,” which is what we get here in New England, so this week, I’m going to teach you about it.
Snow is not as pretty as you think
You know how snowflakes are this beautiful, intricate crystalline formations with six points, and no two are alike? My husband had a snowflake like that land on his sleeve the other day, and he felt compelled to take a picture, then run inside to show me. That’s because snowflakes like that are rare. Normally, they are ugly clumps of those things. Not so beautiful. Then, the plows come through and spray gray snow all over your smooth, perfect lawn. It doesn’t look like a Vermont Christmas card for long.
Snow’s cousins, slush and ice
Some people have a little experience with the snow, from that time they visited grandma when they were eight, or maybe from a ski vacation, so they think that they like winter. You don’t know winter. Let me tell you about winter’s by-products. Snow also means ice. Ice everywhere. Ice on your welcome mat, causing your guests to fall as they walk in your front door. Ice coating your car, which you have to scrape and bang on. And the door is frozen shut, so you can’t even access your ice scraper. Then there’s the slush. Ever stepped out of your car, and stepped directly into a puddle of slush up to your ankle? How about five times a year? Ten times?
Playing in the snow
|Sorry about the composition;|
I had to press the shutter button
with my nose
You may have figured out by now that I hate the snow. I have a kid, and he wants to play in the snow. The first time we do this every year is okay, because I get to enjoy it through him, and blah blah blah whimsy. But then it just sucks. I don’t want to play; I want to stand there. And that means I get cold faster than he does. I do like that playing in the snow tires him out. Here he is playing a game I made up, “How Fast Can You Run to That Bush? Do it Again!” He’s pretty good at it. But sometimes playing in the snow doesn’t tire him out enough, and I don’t get that nap I was hoping for. So I just wasted 45 minutes standing in the cold. Bullshit.
So much laundry
It gets crazy cold. You know all those ads for winter apparel that show some jerk wearing a scarf and a sweater, or maybe a fleece vest and a knit hat? That’s what we wear to bed in the winter. Although I keep my house the same temperature year round (76 degrees, and I assure you that’s not a typo), I am freezing all winter long. In the summer, I walk around the house in shorts or capris and a short-sleeved shirt. But in the winter, I wear pants, knee socks, a tank top, a long sleeved shirt, and sometimes a hoodie. And often a blanket on my lap. In the same 76-degree house. Because it’s friggin’ winter. Don’t even get me started on all the outerwear.
It wrecks your house
Forget about having clean floors for four months. Everyone will be tracking snow inside, of course, but don’t forget about the sand and salt that we throw all over said snow. It’s disgusting. You can have people take their shoes off at the door, to corral the mess a little. But then one person will forget, or “forget,” because they have smelly feet/ugly socks/really cute new shoes. Then you step in a slush puddle in the kitchen, while wearing just socks.
It makes me feel bad for animals
The other day, around midnight, it was 16 degrees outside (that’s not unusual). I could hear my next-door neighbor meowing on his deck—oh, he’s a cat, by the way—and I felt so bad for him. His family was asleep, and he was probably going to be stuck outside for another 8 hours or so. Should I go wake them up? Let him crash in my basement? I don’t care what science says, it was not fit for man or beast to be outside. Poor guy.
Driving in the snow
Driving is just plain terrifying. I’ll stay in for days until the roads are completely dry. I’m so lucky I don’t work outside the home anymore; I’ve spent too many mornings driving 20 mph on the highway, hyperventilating, every muscle in my body stiff, only to slide sideways into a road sign a mile from my destination. Stop telling me to turn into the skid. It doesn’t work. It just doesn’t.
In summary, I am going to be absolutely miserable for the next few months. But I guess that’s good for my writing, right?