Sunday, February 12, 2012

A Frosty Matter

Sun shining, but it's fairly cold here today. Around 38 on our back deck. I have to admit, I kind of like it. I grew up in Arkansas and wasn't exposed to the kinds of frigid winters they have up north. But it got cold, and the trees all lost their leaves, and sometimes the snow would come for a visit. You needed a heavy coat in Arkansas.

Since coming to Louisiana I've seen very little of winter. I remember one very cold snap in the late 80s where we had a week of below freezing temps. Other than that, the only time I've worn a heavy coat down here is back when I used to ride my motorcycle to work in December and January. I kid you not.

I've only got about 3 long sleeve shirts, I've worn one of those twice so far this year, with the sleeves rolled up because it was too darn hot. I get asked a lot by folks at Xavier, "aren't you cold?" I reply with, "aren't you hot?" Because most of the people who ask me the question are wearing mufflers and gloves and heavy coats in 50 degree weather.

I think I'm gonna go out for a walk now. I'll wear a jacket, and I'll like it. I'll let the crisp air carry a little frost within, and just maybe I'll be able to remember that frost when August rolls around and I'm sweltering at midnight on some black summer night.

One can hope.


Sidney said...

It's cold here too. I kinda like it. Had to go to St. Louis a few days and it was pretty chilly there. Had some snow on the ground when I arrived, but it didn't snow while I was there.

Angie said...

My experience is similar. I grew up in California at sea level, where we got a light dusting of snow maybe once every 10-15 years, and hard freezes about as often. I remember one year when it froze, we lost our avocado tree. :( We'd grown it from a pit, and it was just getting close to being old enough to maybe start bearing, but then the hard freeze came and it died.

Now I'm in Seattle and although I get cold just sitting around at home (under a blanket, with a heater on), outside walking around I'm usually wearing less than most people. Everyone else is wearing two sweaters and a heavy coat and a scarf and a hat, and I'm in jeans and a T-shirt and maybe a sweater if it's cold out.

I think in my case, most of the difference is my build. I'm very fat, and if I'm walking, I'm generating a LOT of heat. Sitting at a bus stop I freeze, and wish for some of those extra layers everyone else is wearing, but if I wore them walking to and from said bus stop, or walking around downtown or in a mall or wherever I was going, I'd drown in sweat before I ever had a chance to freeze. :/


Randy Johnson said...

We don't get snows like we did twenty-five years ago here in North Carolina. Usually though, we get something. This year has been particularly mild with it dipping down into the high thirties only a couple of times and no snow.

But winter has finally arrived. Last night dipped down into the teens and it's only expected to get as high as thirty-seven today.

Not to worry though. It's supposed to pop back into the fifties near the end of the week, just in time for some precipitation.

Chris said...

It's all a matter of what you're used to. I just spent three days in Phoenix and Tucson -- enjoyed the sun and 70 degrees, had a blast hiking in the desert. Now I'm home (Missoula, MT). Went to the store this morning and called my dad while sitting in my truck waiting for it to warm up. We talked about how it's snowing outside, and that they got a couple more inches so far this morning. "At least it's warm out," my dad said. "Yeah, no kidding, was my response."

It's 30 degrees.

I just came back from the store, where I stood outside a few minutes chatting with an acquaintance, sipping on my soda and enjoying the weather here as much as I did in Arizona.

And I'm wearing shorts and a t-shirt.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

It's about forty degrees here today. I grew up in several cold climates and anything over seventy is hot, summer weather to me. So I can relate!

Oscar Case said...

Blood thins over time and winter's get colder even if the temp remains the same. I always carry a sweater in the car for wintertime in the desert.

Adventuresfantastic said...

Texas isn't much different than Louisiana, although up on the Caprock where I am, the higher elevation keeps the temps a little lower than the rest of the state.

It barely got above freezing yesterday, and since about 9:00 or so this morning we've had varying degrees of snow. Since this past year was one of the driest on record, we'll take the moisture in whatever form we can get.

Charles Gramlich said...

Sidney, we had a couple of tiny snows over the last couple of years but not this year. As long as I don't have to drive in it I don't mind snow.

Angie, I'm like that in that if I'm moving I don't get cold, but if I sit still I do need heavier clothing. I just don't sit still very often.

Randy, We'll be back in the sixties here within a day or two. It never stays cold long. Will probably get to the high fifties today.

Chris, Lana says 70 degrees is the perfect temperature. I'm inclined to agree, although I can handle a pretty wide variety of temps

Alex, I'm good up to about 75, although I sure want to wear shorts in that weather. Over that and it is definitely hot.

Oscar, so far my blood hasn't thinned much. I also like to sleep in the cold, with blankets pulled up, of course.

Keith, I know you've been having some real drought conditions across Texas. I hope you guys get more precipitation soon.

Richard Prosch said...

Sounds like a cliche, but the humidity makes a difference. We lived in Laramie one year, then moved to South Carolina. I thought the SC winter more uncomfortable, even though the temps were naturally much higher. South Carolina winters are dreary and wet.

Deka Black said...

That's nothing! I grew up in a mountain at the foots of the Pyrenees (the mountains that are the natural frontier between Spain and France). And i remember winters with 6-8 centimeters not of snow, but solid ice in the streets. For a kid was a really fun adventure to go to the street ^^

Snowbrush said...

Winters here in the Willamette Valley are about the same temperature as the ones I grew up in around Brookhaven, which I think is about 70 miles north of you. I was in Minneapolis for two years, and that was really my only taste of winter.

I just looked your town up on Google, and saw that you're near the Bogue Chitto River. My first address--the one we had when I was born--was Route 4, Bogue Chitto. The river starts a little west of Brookhaven.

Rick said...

Here in Detroit, it's the oven on season and the freezer the next.

jodi said...

Charles-the crisp air of fall is my favorite time of year. There is something very refreshing about that breath of air that fully fills your lungs!

Travis Cody said...

One of the reasons I moved north was so that I could get to a place that did not routinely have 100 degree summers, and routinely had 30 degree winters.

One of the reasons I moved north on the west coast was to avoid winters wherein it snowed and stayed on the ground for 3-4 months.

Charles Gramlich said...

Richard, that's certainly true, and one reason the heat is so intense here. the humidity makes it impossible for you to sweat.

Deka, never saw it that thick for sure. I remember a few ice storms but nothing like that.

Snowbrush, lana and I go quite often to the Bogou chitto. There's a park there we picnic at. Interesting.

Rick, we get the oven, not the freezer.

Jodi, I agree absolutely. It rejuvenates!

Travis Cody, snow on the ground for a month at a time would sure be a bummer. I'd hate that.

the walking man said...

Bite me Charles! We almost made it with NO snow until a couple of days ago then the Alberta clipper came. 10 degrees...the memo said two weeks of winter for us this year...the first week has passed so that leaves one more before we get our two weeks of spring.

ivan said...


You've been busy. You're relaxing out there by the woods...Some time to talk about the weather.
Understandable why the post reads something like a Facebook entry.

But durn. I like writin' that sets me on fire...Hey, you did have a title like that once!

I rather like the late Norman Mailer when he aped a letter from one of his Harvard alumni friends.

"Oh, we are comfortable here in the Catskills. There is nothing like a fast rubber of bridge by the rockeback to whet the old competitive instincts...

He adds,

Why the bridge and the back deck?

Write. Write something useful. Like "The shits are killing us"... "in our dear totalitarian time."

I think the shits are killing me.

I have stopped watching the news.

Think I'll head out for the back deck and play some bridge. In the unseasonably nice weather.
Need to relax.

sage said...

This weekend was the coldest we've had all winter and it only got to 1 degree F. I'm missing the cold weather for soon it'll be warm and buggy. Only 3 long sleeve shirts, eh? Up here, one needs more clothes because I hate long sleeves (and long pants) in the summer.

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

Cold winds blowing in from the Himalayas is giving Bombay, located way down southwest, its most prolonged winter in many years and everyone's just lovin' it, especially since we are already bracing for three months of Indian summer followed by four months of Indian monsoon adding up to seven months of hell.

Charles Gramlich said...

Mark, you sound like my wife, man. She spent too many years in Canada perhaps. :)

Ivan, I did get out for that walk. nice!

Sage, only two of those long sleeved shirts are of the heavy variety.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Many people in Michigan almost never wear short sleeves. It usually goes down to 60 ish at night even in July. Great summers, hard winters. Except this one.

Tyhitia Green said...

It hasn't been that cold this year here in S.C. But you sound like a hot-natured person. :)

BernardL said...

Storing up some memories of coolness is a good idea. I remember the heat and humidity down there even after nearly forty years. :)

Ty said...

I've been living/traveling down South the last few years, and I kind of miss the snows we had when I lived in Ohio.

Charles Gramlich said...

Patti, a very different world from mine!

Tyhitia, I apparently am.

Bernardl, it ain't for the faint of heart!

Ty, makes on feel alive, for sure.

Steve Malley said...

Summer for me - or at least, that's what they tell me. Whenever the wind shifts out of the south we're reminded that there's not a hell of a lot between us and Antartica.

Cold and rain, cold and rain...

G. B. Miller said...

I'm sorry, but being from Connecticut and long used to temps between single digits and forty, I find it incredibly funmy for people to be bundled up in 50 degree weather.

Up here 50 degree weather in February is treated like spring timme.

Most of this winter (Novembe thru February) has been bee spent doing my best impersonation of Bill Bellicheck wearing a fleece hoody.

X. Dell said...

Thirty-eight degrees? My friend, you're living in comparative tropics.

Actually, were enjoying a mild, temperate weather up north this year. But I am no stranger to double-digit below zero temperatures.

BTW, it might be time to buy another long-sleeved shirt.

laughingwolf said...

north born, and mostly lived... with approaching old age, like the cold/snow less every year...

no need for snow; most idiots don't know how to handle driving in it, so i'm always tense, worrying about some clown hitting my car...

i see mofos driving around with windows/vehicles mostly covered in snow/ice, with some of the more ignorant having scraped an area the size of a #10 envelope to peer thru, on driver side of windshield... sheer luck has prevented them from getting killed!

i go nowhere until my car is totally ice/snow free, including the mirrors... i like the small chance of getting out of their way

besides, once it begins to thaw, those same clowns splash/cover your car with it, and the sand/salt from the road as well... often blinding me, and creating more cleaning jobs i don't need GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR

Charles Gramlich said...

Steve Malley, I love the rain, I don't mind the cold. But the combination of the two is pretty nasty.

G., I find it very funny as well. I laugh at many of my colleagues as I'm slouching along in t-shirts and they are bundled up with their hands in their pockets and scarfs around their necks.

X-Dell, Oh, I agree, 38 is nice and crisp. Just enough bite for a windbreaker but nothing requiring a heavier coat.

Laughingwolf, down here we have plenty of idiots who don't know how to drive in rain, but it is less of a hassle than driving in snow and ice for sure so I am grateful for that.

Golden Eagle said...

For us, it's actually been a warmer than usual winter this year. There hasn't even been over around five inches of snow at one time, which is rare.

SzélsőFa said...

it's been quite a mild winter here, except for the last 2-3 weeks, when the temperature dropped below minus 15 centigrade (please convert...) and the warmest time of the day is 2pm when it MIGHT or might not get as 'hot' as minus 2 or 3 degrees centigrade. people wear sweaters, heavy coats.

Voidwalker said...

Hey Charles! I know I've been missing for some time, but I'm back. Hope to be blogging regularly again. I'll be dropping by here too! Glad to see you are still here and doing well.

As for your cold weather, I just came back in town from Colorado Springs and when I was there it was about 14 degrees! I thought I was going to perma-freeze. But even then, I still enjoyed the cold, so I'm with ya.

Charles Gramlich said...

Golden Eagle, it's apparently been really varied across the country, which makes sense.

Szelsofa, so far, no heavy coat for me at all. Some windbreakers is it.

Voidwalker, glad to see you back. Hope all has been well.