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Tuesday, February 5, 2013

February in Minneapolis: We’re Gettin’ Hysterical Up in Here

It is four degrees outside.

And there is a pair of flip-flops in one of the cubicles lining the yoga studio wall.

“This,” I say to Mary, later, “is what makes me despair over the future of mankind.”

Mary nods – at least I think she’s nodding – and sighs into the phone.  “You’d think they’d die out.  Miserable bastages.”

“I want to see them crying,” I say solemnly.  “I know it’s wrong, but I want to see someone in flip-flops come limping in off the street, toes black, if possible, and crying ‘why didn’t I listen to that one weather guy?’

Mary chuckles.  “These are the same people,” she says, “that will walk from their front door to their car in a pair of sweat pants and a baseball cap and tell you to your face –“

“ – to your face!” I interrupt.

“To your face!” she says, pounding on to a solid object, quite possibly the kitchen table, “that it’s not that cold out!”

I nod vigorously.  “Like they can tell me about the cold!”

“Pfft,” she says.  “You’re like a freaking pioneer or something, out there with that enormous coat.”

“And the hat.”

“And the gloves and the scarf and the knee-high boots.  You’re like an icon.”

“I’m a freakin’ Minneapolitan, for cryin’ eye!”

“You’re a known commodity,” Mary say, laughing.  “Do they not recognize the wisdom that your years of –“

“Heeey,” I say.

But it’s too late.  Mary has warmed to the subject. 

“—experience bring?  Who was around for the double layer of corduroys serving as snow pants?  You.  Who put her little feetsies in bread bags when her boots had cracks in the bottoms?  You.  Who was the gal with the frosted eye glasses groping her way onto the bus?  YOU.”

Mary is choking with laughter.  “Who was once stuffed into the belly of an ox during a blizzard while Pa walked uphill through the snow back to the little house on the prairie?  Huh? Was that you?”

“Stay where you are, Mary,” I say, mock threatening.  “’Cuz I’m comin’ over.”

 “You’re a sturdy li’l lass,” she says with something of an Irish brogue, “and I’ll not have you portrayed differently!  Holy Hannah, we’ll take it to the streets!  I’ll fight ‘em in the streets, by God!”

The line goes quiet.

“I’ve gone too far, haven’t I?” she says. 

“I have to go now,” I say quietly.

I can hear her smiling.  It’s the phone, of course, but we’re professionals.  “I’ll call ya later,” she says.

I smile back.  “I’ll be here.”




35 comments:

vanilla said...

It's 68 outside, but then it is only 9 a.m. The feet are bare and the sand beckons...

Anyway, a phone conversation between Mary and Pearl always creates laughter!

fmcgmccllc said...

A sturdy lass, I like that.

Simply Suthern said...

Sounds like them folk need to move a little further north where it is cold. Are you sure they aint Santa's elves on leave?

Shelly said...

I'm in the same area as vanilla and we are having spectacular spring weather. Like a goldfish out of water, I'd die before the first day ended if I visited Minnesota in the wintertime.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I want to see them cry, too.
Them, and the girls in miniskirts without tights waiting in line outside the bars on Friday nights.

Pearl said...

So we are all in agreement, yes? We push the inappropriately dressed outside until they plead piteously -- and we take in the Southerners, dress them warmly, make them laugh, and feed them a hearty stew and fresh-baked bread!

Who's with me?!!

mybabyjohn/Delores said...

Ah yes, those slender young things at the bus stop with their fashionable coats hanging open, open toed shoes and frost bitten fingers. I think they might be in denial. Maybe some professional help is required. Now where did I put my mukluks.

Sausage said...

Use the SF mousepad as a bun warmer, microwave for 30 seconds then proceed to park it under da cheeks.
That is if it's not in the dustbin by now.
all the best and "Warm" wishes from you know where...
Ice cream for lunch.

Buttons said...

Oh you make me laugh Pearl.
I ran out in the snow in one of our Canadian Snowstorms to the mailbox in flip flops the other day, just to lazy to pull on boots or a coat for that matter. Word of advice "Don't try that at home" (mmm is my toe black?) B

jenny_o said...

I'm with ya, Pearl! Any Southerners venturing to this part of Canada will be blanketed,, slippered, given a hot meal and coddled like the good eggs they are :)

Mary could run for something, with that speech-making ability of hers!

Perpetua said...

Ouch, that is COLD, Pearl! You're right -layers, layers and more layers is the only way to go. Flip-flops, forsooth.....

TexWisGirl said...

the belly of an ox, i say! :)

George Turnbull said...

You've got to love Mary.

Although, I do think you go a little OTT when sharing information with her about you private ... shall we say, foibles?

I'm going to have to find out what that word means now,

In answer to your question: I have a very friendly bank manager with cleavage!

bill lisleman said...

professionals you both are and at the top of your game.
I can so relate to frosted eye glasses. It's amazing what you can see through frosted glasses.

Kana said...

27 degrees this morning in Anchorage...and yes, that's Fahrenheit, baby. You're obviosuly getting the fuzzy end of the lollipop down there. I think maybe complaining more will do the trick. :) Very warming activity, complaining...I should know!

Daisy said...

Haha! I loved this. I so hate the cold, and those who can pretend to ignore it and act like it doesn't exist really annoy me. I have also said to my husband at times, "I just don't know how that Laura Ingalls Wilder did it." :-)

Mandy_Fish said...

Who could forget the sweaty bread bags in the cheap plastic boots?

SIGH.

I liked how it went all Empire Strikes Back there for a minute.

Macy said...

But was there dust on those flip flops?? No chance they'd been in the cubicle since last August??
Just thinking...

Jackie said...

I'm a new reader of your blog.
I came here because of a kind compliment that Jim (Sully) gave regarding your writing.
He's absolutely correct!
Hugs from the deep South...
Jackie

Geo. said...

"sturdy li’l lass", eh? Good expression, but one must enunciate it more carefully than I can to feel really comfortable with it.

the walking man said...

It's not that cold out Pearl three pairs of underwear, jeans two pair of Carhartt socks 4 shirts a hoodie and a used lined army jacket. My ears are a bit cold because I haven't figured out how to get a third hat to stay on my head.


when someone gets that bad skin black frostbite would it hurt if you just reached over and snapped the toe off like a broken fingernail?

Leenie said...

I want a friend like Mary. One who puts me in my place with such good blog fodder humor that I love her even more. Thank goodness you share her with us in such an astute way.

The inappropriately dressed in our frozen world (fool students from all over the planet) keep us in business so we can purchase the parkas and mukluks we need.

Joe Pereira said...

Well Pearl, were you the one who got stuffed into the belly of an ox or not? Or was it a bison? Thanks for making me smile :)

Jacquelineand.... said...

Flip flops in winter! Makes as much sense as the neighbour's 5" platform heels on the ice this weekend. Along with the black micro-mini, fishnet tights and lacy crocheted sweater.

As I'm clinging to the side of the car, sensibly attired in mukluks and knee-length (fake) shearling coat and still shivering she had the nerve to wave cheerily and yell across the street: "See you at church!"

Heathen. ;)

Joanne Noragon said...

My granddaughters are connoisseurs of snow and have pronounced the winter's crop decided disappointing. Plenty of it, not snowman worthy. Or even snowball worthy.

Ziva said...

Oh my word, this was an absolutely hilarious read! You two remind me so much of me and my friend Zelma, especially when we grouse about the Finnish winter, how it's always -30 degrees, uphill wherever you're going, a headwind, five feet of snow and wolves chasing you. ;)

Ms Sparrow said...

Wow, I thought my roomie was the only one who said "bastages"! That's one of the Roman Maroney cusswords that were so funny in "Johnny Dangerously". I also loved Ma Kelly's response when Johnny tells her she can now give up taking in ironing. "What!" she says indignantly, "and give up me career?"

Glen said...

married, as I am, to a woman who will put the heating on in the middle of Summer, I can only agree - these people need locking up for their own health

Roshni AaMom said...

Can't we do a conference call sometime, girls?!!

Gigi said...

Being from the South, I am happy to hear that you will take us in and keep us warm should we find ourselves up there in the Great White North.

Mukluks...hmmm, not a clue as to what that might be. Off to search the almighty Google.

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

Wow, you got up to 4 degrees. Thank God for global warming.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

I guess people who wear flip flops in two-degree weather are trying to prove how "tough" they are, but all they're doing is proving how stupid they are.

Jo-Anne Meadows said...

Yeah there are some bloody fools around no brains, no feeling.....lol

The Geezers said...

My, you have a nice ear for this kind of dialogue. A genuine talent.

Excellent piece.

Indigo Roth said...

Oh, how sharer than a serpent's tooth, the tongue of a friend who thinks they're funny. A pox on them all! Tho not Mary; she's lovely. Indigo x