It finally happened. The day I had been lusting for since mid-July arrived. Last week, the temperature mercifully dropped into the 40s. My joy was boundless, my enthusiasm unrestrained.
I celebrated in the traditional fashion of my Nordic ancestors by running naked in my backyard screaming “Jeg elsker ikke sveder!” (I love not sweating.)
OK, I didn’t run naked (I was wearing my PJs) because, besides violating some city codes, I’m sure it’s against an HOA covenant. I can see it right there next to fence height and width of pickets: “No person(s) shall run a lap around their backyard while donning nothing but their birthday suit.”
You see I have had a lifetime love affair with chilly weather. It completes me. All you summer lovers can take your clinical strength deodorant, your moisture-enriched body parts, flimsy flip-flops, and your triple-degree temperatures, and go sit beside a dozen Costco space heaters because it’s the fall, dang it, and we should glory in it.
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You know what? That’s not even good enough. We should respect not just fall but the seasonal change in temperatures.
This is a major beef of mine because we live in the Midwest. We’re not Gulf of Mexico or plain old Mexico adjacent, so why do we grouse when the temperature finally reflects the wonders of autumn?
As I was driving to work on that chilly October morn with the windows slightly down so I could be blasted with nippy air, thus making my car’s seat-heater even more delicious, I was in my element — cold and cozy.
If fall was a food, it would be kettle corn, because it delivers a yin and yang of temperate experiences.
My euphoria was doused when some fools, yes fools, on “news” radio began complaining about the “freezing weather” and wondering when summer would be back.
That was it for me. I couldn’t take it anymore. I pulled my car into the nearest parking lot, found the station’s number and gave them a ring-a-ding-ding. I felt duty bound, in the name of seasonal equity, to let these goofs have it.
As I waited for my call to go through, I couldn’t decide how to approach the topic. Should I be very motherly and explain in no more than two-syllable words what fall is? Surely, they should have learned that in school.
Hmm, maybe I needed to go scientific and discuss with them that 49 degrees is not technically freezing and that perhaps they should put on a sweater and get over themselves.
Or would a public shaming be more appropriate? The duo on the radio were longtime residents of Kansas City. They were supposed to be hearty Midwesterners, who can swagger-walk through epic snowstorms and endure the ravages of ice without so much as a pair of mittens, not crybabies who were upset that they had to wear long sleeves and perhaps closed toe shoes (gasp!) for a couple of days in October.
Since I couldn’t figure out the best way to make my case for fall, I was going to go full cornucopia and just blast them with all three. First, a quick primer on what fall is, followed by a basic science lesson on what constitutes freezing and then a no-holds-barred scolding. (I consider the latter my specialty.)
Finally, my call was answered and I was ready to go. Ugh, it was a recording. I had to resort to text which is not nearly as satisfying, but as autumn’s unofficial champion I was not going to be deterred.
Fall repaid me for my effort by soaring into the 80s three days later. Sigh.
Reach Sherry Kuehl at snarkyinthesuburbs@ gmail.com, on Facebook at Snarky in the Suburbs, on Twitter at @snarkynsuburbs and snarkyinthesuburbs.com.