Psalm 74:17 "It was you who set all the boundaries of the earth; you made both summer and winter."
God may have made both summer and winter, but in my opinion He did not create them equally. I have never had a high tolerance for winter, and it's only gotten worse the last few years.
So, in the absence of any flashes of inspiration for weighty topics or intelligent discussion of current affairs, instead let's talk about why I hate winters in Chicago.
- It continues after Christmas. WHY? We only need snow, as far as I'm concerned, to make the Christmas lights look prettier and to add to the holiday spirit. Beyond December, I see no need for snow or cold. Period.
- It makes my hands perpetually cold to the point that I can't activate the touch screen on the ATM because apparently I have the circulation equivalent of a corpse or some sort of cold-blooded reptile. Salamanders come to mind. And really, salamander skin? How attractive is that? Correct answer: not very.
- I can't drive with the windows down. I love to drive with the windows down. If it were up to me, I would drive with the windows down 98% of the time, the 2% exception being those rare occasions when I'm on my way to a formal social event (i.e. wedding) where windblown hair is generally frowned upon, or at least shot disapproving looks from across the church sanctuary and/or ballroom.
- Nobody is tan. Aside from those who go to tanning beds, we are all pasty white albinos, which (skin cancer notwithstanding) is really not a good look for anyone.
- I have to wear socks. All the time. Even in bed, so my feet don't spout frigid little toecicles and scare my husband and/or cats when they think there's a random ice cube tray under the covers. Summertime means going barefoot, which is a truly awesome sensory experience and one that I really miss from October to May every year.
- There's no baseball, either to play outside under beautiful blue skies or to watch on TV or listen to on the radio in the car (with windows down, 'natch). This is depressing enough on its own, but even worse is the fact that everyone talks about football and basketball, which are fun sports to play, but to watch? I'm sorry. They just don't hold a candle to baseball in my book.
- It's too easy to gain weight. Maybe it's the fact that swimsuit season is "still five months away" (at least that's what I tell myself as I down another plate of pasta alfredo and wash it down with an ice cream sundae). Not really (most of the time). But for whatever reason (most likely the ridiculous cold) my body decides every winter that I really could use an extra layer of fat. The problem, of course, is that by the time this fat builds up to a level that could provide any degree of insulation against the winter cold, it's March... which means I'm stuck working it off well into April/May, and exercise really cuts into my social calendar, y'know?
- Nobody gets together as often in the winter. Sure, there's Christmas and New Year's and Super Bowl parties, but after that? Dead air until St. Patrick's Day, which is on the cusp of spring anyway.
- Finally, I hate winter in this region because, as you may have heard, Chicago has only two seasons: winter and construction.
So, how do you deal with winter? If you're lucky enough to live someplace where "winter" means it gets down to the 40s at night (maybe), I'm sorry but you're automatically disqualified from complaining. And if you're one of those people who actually like this season... please give me some tips to surviving until March 21. Because right now I feel like my soul is getting hypothermia. Brrrr....