Monday, February 18, 2008

That Groundhog Can Kiss My...

"Now is the winter of our discontent..." Shakespeare sure knew his way around the human psyche. I'm feeling oppressed by winter, imprisoned by the cold, grey days and victimized by the icy winds that render me a hostage of layer upon layer of polar fleece and numbing sameness. I get up in the dark, drive my 3-4 minutes to work in a cold car along streetlight-illumined roads, and at the end of the day, drive home in a cold car, barely making it in the door before I kick off my high heels and enrobe myself in my fleece and slippers. Some days I give in entirely and just zip into a grownup-sized blanket sleeper that I got for Christmas one year as a sort of joke gift.

How sad am I? Forty-eight years old, and in my jammies by 3:30 in the afternoon, and toddler jammies at that.

It's pathetic.

Winter for me is an endurance test. It's a struggle that I barely win each year. I'm one of those annoying women that is cold all the time, truly. My hands are like those of a corpse, and even wearing mittens doesn't help. I have a blanket on the back of my chair and a small, portable ceramic heater that travels with me at school. If I could be sure of an outlet nearby, I'd take it with me to restaurants, which are always far too cold for me. During the winter, we rarely eat out because Rick cannot stand to sit across from me and see me eating with my coat on.

(And no, it wasn't always like this, and I won't bore you with a lot of details about previous illness and medication side effects and all that long drawn-out crap. Suffice it to say that if just bundling up in a ton of sweaters and long underwear and Cuddle-Duds was all it took, well, hell, I'd have already done all that.)

I'm cold everywhere and all the time. And, you know, after a while, it starts to have a major impact on every little thing in my life. As in--I don't have a life in the winter.

Because to have one, you have to go outside. And it's cold out there.

I do a lot of waiting. Waiting and reading and sighing and wondering about things. Things like why do I have to live in Ohio where we get winter 6 frikking months a year? Things like
why does my skin feel warm, yet I am so cold that I can even tell my guts are cold? Things like were those really--I hope you are all sitting down for this--stirrup pants that I saw at Express last weekend? Because if Express is bringing back stirrup pants then we are in for The Apocalypse. And things like where is the olive green sweater I have been waiting for?

And Shakespeare is right. I'm not content at all. February has 29 days this year, and that means an extra day of winter. How very discontent-ing.


  1. Anonymous8:14 AM


    You should live with a husband like mine.. determined to thwart the Arabs in their quest for more of our petro-dollars.

    Our house is kept so cold you have to put the butter in the refrigerator to get it soft enough to spread.

    Once, our teenage daughter tripped over the rug in the living room. Dad called,"Are you all right?" Daughter,"Yes, I'm Ok. I just slipped on the ice."

    I used to run all the errands because only in the car was I ever really warm. Notice the PAST tense?
    I saved all my hard earned money during my working years and bought a little house here in Florida.

    We are here now from January through March and in Pennsylvania for the lovely months of April to December.

    You must do the same, Nance. Ohio is a wonderful place to live, except in Winter. Save up to escape the cold for a few months each year and you will be very comfortable most of the time.

  2. Amen. I'm in Northern Illinois. Today, it is 8 degrees. With a windchill of minus 8.

    "How sad am I? Forty-eight years old, and in my jammies by 3:30 in the afternoon, and toddler jammies at that."

    That's not sad -- I would LOVE to be able to do that... and have a 3-4 minute drive to work. :)

    There are days when I'm pretty comfortable, but other days when I'm sure my personal pilot light just went out -- I feel cold from the inside out. No amount of layers or blankets seems to help.

    (Love the pic, btw!)

    Hang in there Nance. It'll get warmer... like in May...

  3. I shouldn't complain here in relatively balmy (?) CT. I have an opposite story. Our once state-of-the-art, 1960 all-electric house was designed without heat in mind. It maintains a icy, crispy, crunchy 50-57 degree temp all winter long even with heat cranked up. My body's thermostat has always been broken to favor the cold end. My husband says I'm a reptile (how's that for loving flattery?) Since I work from home and sit in the cold all day, apparently I've "hardened off" like a plant, so whenever I go anywhere that's a normal temp for humans I feel like I'm having hot flashes, turn all pink, and the family makes fun. The ice rink is the only public place I can go that isn't too hot. I'd gladly send you a few flash-therms if only they were transferable!

  4. Are you planning on retiring somewhere warmer? I definitely plan on spending my adult life somewhere with at least mildly happy weather, but close enough to go skiing in the winter.

  5. i.h.--yes, I am. Whether or not Rick chooses to follow me other than on the weekends is still in discussion.

    sputnik--hey, where have you been? does this mean I should run over to your place to see if you finally have a new post up? LOL. i keep wondering if all this lamenting over being cold will be for naught when menopause hits.

    ck--you know, i love the politics and the whole vibe of the chicago area. i'd move there in a minute except your weather might actually be worse than ours!!!

    nancy--LOL "slipped on the ice." i grew up in a chilly house, and i do prefer sleeping in a cooler room and bundling up in blankets, but i cannot abide having to bundle up like a camper in the living room. i have to be comfortable to LIVE. (and TEACH, and EAT. you know?)

  6. As I sit here with icicles growing on my toes and feeling like I need to crank the heat up to 100, I know how you feel Nance! It's like when does it end?!?!? I looked outside and saw the sun shining, but to my disappointment, by the time I went out the door, all I could see was rosy cheeks and snot-sicles on the noses of children. Just depressing!

    P.S. A guy had on a muscle shirt and shorts at Kroger...I felt like Bitch slapping him!

  7. My boyfriend makes fun of my when I put on my jammies after school. But I refuse to wear my pants that are soaked in melted snow. The worst part of winter to me right now is driving in a freezing cold car; I have a 10 minute drive to work and I spend nearly all of it hunched over the steering wheel trying to stay warm! Give me an overheated-from-the-sun car any day! And I hate having to wait at the busstop. I wish my classes were close enough to least I'd be moving in the cold!

  8. There, there, Nance. Have some hot, boiling soup. Or some hot chocolate. Or move to Florida.

    I do sympathize, I get very cold myself. Which is why I do not live in Ohio, I could not take that anymore.

    Now... what time do you get to school? Because I would so love to be home by 3:30, jammies or otherwise.

  9. Sorry you're cold all of the time. :( when I'm cold like that, I ache, because I hunch my shoulders up to my ears. Ouch.

  10. maya's granny--nice to see you here at the Dept.! i do the exact same thing, and have terrible shoulder issues that are exacerbated by that behavior. the cold is my nemesis!

    ortizzle--so great to see you coming out to play again like in the old days. i am at school by 7:30 AM. we leave at 3 PM., so sometimes I'm even home by 3:10 by the time I pack up and bundle up and get out to my car. I love the short drive, but it doesn't give the car time to warm up unless I start it ahead of time--not very fuel-efficient or always convenient.

    jen--i am so with you entirely! and why come home and put on another outfit, THEN finally, your jammies? cut out the middle one and save on laundry, time, and energy (yours and electricity, gas, water)!

    tera--i just want to slap all the people who act like it's NOT cold. or say things like, "I love the snow! I want to go sledding!" Go ahead and go, just do it quietly. LOL.

  11. I want to say "Cheer up, Nance, at 48, hot flashes are coming your way," but you know, I don't want to be a Mean Grrrl.

    Really, I'm much more concerned about the stirrup pants.

    Did you see Daniel Day Lewis' BROWN shoes with his black trousers at the Oscars? At least he was sporting good hair.

  12. Oh, SIGH, V. You know that I did. At least they can be said to to match the brown accent color on his tux. THERE! That IS my story and I'm sticking TO IT.


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