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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Why? Why Do You Insist on Freezing?

The United States, my friends, is currently experiencing one giant storm, one that has delivered 50-foot waves to Hawaii, a temperature of 8 degrees Fahrenheit (and as we all know, that’s
-13.333333333333334 Celsius) and seven inches of snow to Minneapolis, one that is working its way eastward where it will no doubt visit frogs and/or boils upon the inhabitants thereof.

Repent!

Yes, sir, winter’s begun in earnest; and you know what that means.

It’s time to laugh and point.

Dear Fellow Bus Rider, why? Why do you persist in your ways?

You! Why do you insist upon wearing pants belted just below your butt cheeks? Why are you wearing an overly large parka, your arms pulled in, the sleeves flapping uselessly in the driving wind? You look miserable, truly miserable. What you’re wearing is the equivalent of wearing nothing at all. True, it lacks the entertainment quality of standing at the bus stop naked; but your enormous jeans and jacket are no match for a winter gale. I can see that you are – what? – 16? 17? Allowances for your stupidity have been made. Still. Wherever you are from, you need to return there, immediately, before they find your silly, frozen body on the sidewalk and we are forced to shovel around you.

But you! Lady on the Bus! Heels? Heels?! You’re old enough to know better.

And before you go imagining an elegant woman, long-legged, fashionable, and from a part of the world that knows not the ways of the winter, let me assure you that Ms. It-Says-“Juicy”-On-The-Seat-Of-My-Pants is from here.

This ain’t her first time around the ice rink.

Part of me – the smug, warm part of me, liberally layered in wool, down, and occasionally, cats – wants the bus to break down, to be told that we need to walk to the next stop and that it’s, oh, a mile away. I, Nanook of the North, will trudge bravely forward, cracking my whip at the sled dogs and shouting encouragement while Ms. Three-Inch Heels totters down the steps of the bus and plants herself face first into a snow bank.

This is where the laughing and pointing part comes in.

It’s Minnesota. Our heating bills are sky-high, the days are something like six hours long, and exposed flesh freezes.

Otherwise, go about your business, fellow commuters. I have no strong feelings about this.

41 comments:

Erin said...

You are hilarious! And I live the outdoors of Minnesota through you. Because I as well live here, and don't think that I could survive if I had to venture out to the outdoors each day to go to work.
(I work from home, and am from Ca and this is my first winter)...
It is probably better that I live through your stories, but I sure as hell would NEVER wear heels in the snow...Come on people, don't you watch the weather, or at least have common sense??

Thanks for the stories...and stay warm.

the iNDefatigable mjenks said...

Navigating snow- and ice-encrusted streets is tough enough while wearing something like sneakers.

I can't imagine trying to walk in anything even remotely resembling high heels.

De Campo said...

Only 15 shopping days till Christmas and you spring on me now that you don’t like JUICY pants?!

You better hope that HotTopic has a good return policy.

Pearl said...

Erin -- from California?! You have my condolences. Winter is a tough gig, but on the plus side, you will be well-positioned for the insanity of spring's arrival, where we all go nuts when it hits 50 degrees. You wait. It will happen to you, too!

mjenks, I suspect she was just leaving her job as a professional dancer...

Pearl said...

De Campo, so you didn't get my voice mail?! :-)

HotTopic. Haven't thought of that place for a while!

Pearl said...

Ha ha! I just realized it is NOT 8 degrees outside.

It's -6.

That is so far below freezing it's not even funny.

Linda said...

Thank goodness, there were no frogs or boils in your storm when it got to Maine.

I am not one who embraces winter, I endure it. And if I had a nickel for each time I told my kids that they were not dressed properly for outside travel, I would be rich and somewhere warm for the winter.

Forget having clean underwear if you are in an accident! Do you have warm boots on and at least carry a coat in the car that you can wear as you trudge for help?

PS. I was thinking of you, Pearl, last night as I drove slowly home from work after midnight, wondering if the roads were just wet, or black ice. I thought riding the bus to work would be nice in weather like yesterday's. Except I live in the boonies. And do buses (busses?) run all night?

Jayne Martin said...

You, dear Pearl, are a charming writer. Your posts are always well-crafted little gems that never fail to make me smile as this one did again today.

And here in California we turn blue, whine and bitch when it drops below 70 because we are nothing if not winter weenies.

Kr√ęg said...

Hey, do you ever see a guy who refuses to admit it's cold, and therefore wears cargo shorts in February? Because we get them down here (OK), and I've been wondering what the latitude cut-off is for that particular strain of jackass.

Pearl said...

Linda, I live in, as they say, Minneapolis proper, and so our buses do not run between roughly midnight and 5:00 a.m. The further you get into the sticks, the more apt you are to be stranded somewhere. :-)

Jayne, thank you so much! That's so nice to hear.
I know we were easily identified as being frm out of town when my family went to Florida for Christmas one year because it was 70 degrees outside and we went swimming. :-) The locals were wearing coats. Really! Coats.

Kreg, that guy is up here! There's not geographic limmit on stupidity. I have a friend who claims to have seen a guy in flip-flops over this last weekend. I believe it.

Roshni said...

I once saw a guy wearing a bulky coat....and shorts!!! I mean, really?!?!?!

That Baldy Fella said...

I always save my high heels for summer

Randa said...

Hysterical!! I am from Mississippi, now live in Florida and I have never seen more than 2 inches of snow before in my LIFE! It's to hot for even a sweatshirt down here and my originally-from-Chicago husband was fussing the other night because he was cold and I refuse to turn the heat on...the thermostat read 64F.

Your winter, so far, sounds GLORIOUS! I have had it with year-round heat.

Maureen@IslandRoar said...

Oh, you crack me up!
Winter-wear does bring out the eccentric in people, doesn't it?

Douglas said...

I was born in New York on Long Island and suffered my first 9 years of life there. Half the summer was spent pining for winter and 2/3rds of winter was spent begging for summer. I have since lived in Florida and California with only a short, but exceedingly ugly, period spent in in northern Virgina. Winter sucks. Snow is pretty when viewed through the window or in pictures (where it cannot cause you harm) but it, too, sucks. And those of us who have escaped it successfully are very happy. And we do spend a lot of winter in flip-flops, T-shirts,and shorts. Unless it drops below 70 and then we drag out the heavy coats and thermal undies.

Before it crosses your mind, do not bother... Florida is full, you will be turned back. By force, if necessary.

avalanche said...

It is my firmly held opinion that if there is a knee high snow drift outside your door, you should be automatically exempt from going to work.

And winter layers may not be exactly "attractive" but they are what I like to call temp. trendy or thermostat friendly.

Lori E said...

We watched a 20 something guy at the bus stop outside the coffee shop I go to in the mornings wearing a long sleeved t-shirt and jeans. Nothing else other than some shoes and an I-pod.
The temperature here at the time would have been about 19 degrees Fahrenheit.
It made me so crazy I couldn't stand it.

MamaOtwins+1 said...

I love it!!! I can't imagine it because I don't know what it is like to be that cold, but you can bet your juicy arse, I wouldn't be in heels!

Mandy's Kidding said...

I wear boots. With heels.

@eloh said...

When I was 16 in snow up to my ears... it was mini skirts.... real mini skirts where your undies matched just in case.

I think it must have been some "thinking" woman of the Midwest that quickly countered the "mini" with the "maxi".

I remember my dad doing his best by telling me that all that cold air would make my legs fat.

Yesterday, I had to turn the air conditioner on for a while. By sundown tonight I'll be freezing. Ahh... the Dixieland jig.

Irish Gumbo said...

Allowances for your stupidity have been made

Someday, I expect to use that in a job performance review...

Is pointing and laughing not okay during the warmer months? 'Cause I'll stop if it its not :)

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

Bare legs and little flat shoes in two feet of snow....I did that all through high school. I'm sure there are moms saying "Wear some clothes, it's cold out," and the kids are saying, "Oh, puh-LEEZE, give me a break." Or whatever they say now while rolling their eyes and stalking out the door.

Stephanie said...

About those 50 foot waves: they're measured from crest to trough - which means from behind. From the front they're much, much, much taller. I learned this surfing days (eons ago) in Hawaii when I got myself out in waves bigger than I could handle. Sand in every orifice...

Uncle Skip, said...

Reminds me that living where I do is a blessing. Yes, it was 16 degress last night and the night before, but it was clear and dry.
The bus here runs every two hours from 8am to 7pm except when it snows. Then they don't send it out.

Fragrant Liar said...

Well, I WAS coming to Minnesota, wearing something fashionably warm but stylish, but now I'm not. I don't needd to, as it's that freakin' cold way down here in TEXAS!

mapstew said...

We had to stop telling our teenagers to 'dress according to the weather conditions' when they found photos of us as teenagers!! :¬)

xxx

justsomethoughts... said...

you are funny pearl.
thats all i've got.

Jen said...

My daughter refuses to wear a coat when she's waiting for the bus. It drives me crazy. In her defense, it's in the 40's and not snowing.

Kavi said...

Heels !! Hilarious !! The bus ride beats the winter blues i guess !!

:)

lisleman said...

the dog sled idea could be a winner for you.
I thought Minneapolis has this system of underground tunnels so you don't need to go out into the frozen air.
good post.

Carol said...

I saw some idiot kid walking to school this morning in a hoody and shorts with his butt hanging out... School was delayed 2 hours because it's FREEZING outside!

Our future generation is frostbit and stupid.

Tempo said...

Hi Nanook, It occasionally (once every few years) gets freezing here in Southern Australia.. sometimes as low as 3C (38F) and we all stay inside with blankets. Never seen a snow drift..

SweetPeaSurry said...

I'm right there with ya pearl ... I'm in Nebraska, and the witche's teets are frozen rock solid, I tell ya. Snow abounds ... and people are wearing the rediculous. Wellingtons? You've never heard of them, we work on computers all day long, look them up lady!!!

Blessings and warmth

My name is PJ. said...

Pearl, for those of us (me) who can't fathom the attraction of living where winter is 6 or 8 months long and spring lasts only 15 minutes, would you consider posting pros and cons?

sage said...

after hearing about the storm for days on end, it finally arrived in MI... I enjoyed your observations, funny writing.

ladyfi said...

LOL! Minnesota sounds a lot like Sweden!

bettyl said...

Great take on life, as usual! Always love your sense of humor!

SUEB0B said...

This is what makes me despair for humanity. God gives us these big magnificent brains and we can't even figure THIS stuff out? There is no hope.

Reddirt Woman said...

P.J. I live in Oklahoma and as far as I can see there are no pros to living in Minnesota unless you can stay in a warm place and point at those foolish enough to be out in polar weather. It does bad things to the brain cells...getting that cold. As for the cons... when the hairs in your nose freeze and they feel like a thousand needles pricking your nares... that is just one of the cons I heard. Trust me, I didn't go up there when it was that cold to experiment for myself.

Pearl you are either way braver than me to live where you live or are a hell of a lot crazier than me.

Helen

chitra said...

First time here. The winter you have described is freezing me as I belong to India and this is a warm country. I am following you.
Do visit my blog, as I do write on 'my pilgrimage'.
see you.

Sara Chapman said...

Ha ha ha. Seattle's nights went into the TEENS, which is completely unacceptable. Love the Might Be Crabby tag.