Winter loses its obvious sting

Welcome to my first column (Iím going to make it obvious Ė that Iím making it obvious Ė that this is my maiden voyage into the weekly editorial unknown). Now touting the inconspicuous, which hopefully wonít be often (unless you like it, in which case I wonít look a gift horse in the mouth), I figure the best way to ease into this 22-inch pair of jeans is with something we can all relate to Ė the weather.

Itís been nice. I donít care if itís global warming, a cyclical trend, plain good luck, or NASA space heaters (Iím not sure if the pun is intended) Ė the weather has been convenient during these winter months, if not downright satisfying. But there I go again, pointing out something everyone already knows.

I might as well keep right on going.

If youíre like me, there hasnít been any getting up a half-hour early to hustle out in flip-flops and way-too-tight-for-public (or too loose) pajama pants to start the car, no cursing (while dancing to occupy the mind) at frozen locks and doors once outside in that splendid and breezy outfit the neighbors must love (and document), no scraping of windows, no clapping and grumming (groaning while humming) waiting for the heater to kick-on, no two-hands clenched to the wheel, whimpering, with a trail of cars behind you so far back the last one in line is actually in front of you, no having to push (wearing shorts and Reebok Pumps) once the angered herd following you runs you off the road, no shoveling, no slipping, no getting up from slipping and watching with horror as the plow re-fills the end of your drive way, no wet socks, no tense moments removing galoshes, no crying (donít tell me it doesnít burn when your bare hands touch the snow), and last but not least, no vigorous clacking, stomping and banging of the boots (pumps) every time feet meet a snow-free piece of earth.

Note, based on the above analysis, that half of our winter hell-capades could be avoided if we didnít have to drive cars.

I digress.

Itís not hard to remind ourselves how hard winter can be. Itís obvious. But isnít it hard for a reason? I canít help but feeling like this easy street weíve been on will only leave us all feeling a little bit empty once spring rolls around. I mean, what do we have to look forward to?

From Mid-November through December we get by eagerly anticipating the holidays. After New Yearís, usually, we have to grind it out in the snow, wind and darkness for nearly three months, knowing however, that the awakening in late March, April and May is the prize for our suffering Ė bringing us one step closer to summer.

I love the four individual seasons because it feels like we have to earn them, like them or not. How would you feel if the black knight just gave the valiant hero the damsel in distress Ė would she ever look at prince charming the same again knowing heís a hack? What if you were awarded the Nobel Prize in the ďdid nothingĒ category, would you be proud of that? Today summer, while still great, doesnít have nearly the same allure it did when I was still in school. For one thing I have to work now, but also, back then it was our reward for surviving another year in a place we likened to a prison. It doesnít mean I wasnít excited for the first day of class again in September.

Itís not like there is anything we can do about this mild, if not nonexistent winter Ė anyway, weíll probably get hammered soon enough and this whole column will be moot. I just thought I might take this opportunity to point out that nice weather is obviously, well, nice. Whatís not so obvious, and itís the reason we all still have bosses, is that sometimes whatís best for us and everyone else isnít what we always want, or like Ė we have to earn our happiness.

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