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Thursday, March 23, 2023

Our readers up north are suffering

OK, winter.

That’ll do.

It’s been real. It’s been lovely. It has been more than enough.

But do you not take a hint?

I’m serious now. Hit the road. Or, rather, get off the road so I can drive again. Here are your things. Here is your salt. Here are your scarf and your boots and your puddles and slush. I don’t care what the groundhog said. You need to leave.

It was cute at first, but I am done with it. I’m over. I am through. My feet are cold. My shoes are soaked. Shoo. Scram.

Every time I turn to the weather lately, a little something in me dies. This isn’t even perpetual winter, but I now understand why those people on “Game of Thrones” are in such foul moods all the time. How did Narnia survive this? If I wanted to live surrounded by ice and snow all the time, I would move to Hoth, where at least I could be eaten by a wampa and put out of my misery. How did our ancestors cope? I can barely deal with a few weeks of ice, let alone an age.

Stop snowing.

Snow is like a manic pixie dream girl: fun and whimsical when you encounter it only through the barrier of a movie screen — but absolute misery to have to put up with in real life.

Even complaining about the weather loses its cachet after several months. “This is abominable snow, man.” “You say that every day.” “I mean it every day.” (A tense silence ensues.) “We need to get out of this house.” “I know.”

How many stories do you know about people cooped up in places because of deep snowfall? How many stories where something good happens to those people? The first draft of this piece consisted entirely of the words “All work and snow play makes Jack a dull boy” typed over and over again.

It used to be picturesque. When we started this thing together, all your little quirks seemed cute. The way you froze the puddles and prompted everyone to wear scarves and skip school. It was endearing. “I hate summer,” I agreed. “Summer is clearly inferior to winter. Winter is tights season. Winter is the season of lights and holidays, when Scandinavians feel most at home.”

But that initial infatuation phase is over. Everything about you bothers me. Your drizzles. How you go from tepid to ice-cold with a snap. How you promise me one thing and deliver another. How you keep shutting down my travel plans and freezing my appendages.

At first I thought it was me. I thought I was a wimp and that I was inadequately prepared for Real Life and Real Weather. But no. It’s not me. Everything about you is terrible. All the tepid consolations you afford are overrated. Hot drinks? I have had enough hot drinks to last a lifetime. Snow? Snow is just glorified rain. Alpine sports? Don’t make me laugh. More snow? Days off school? I don’t want anything you can give me anymore.

You are a vortex of cold and negativity, and I want you out of my life and out of my hemisphere.

Take your drab long coats and your mittens and your gloves. Take your snowmen. Take your mufflers and your wool socks.

People need to go to school. People need to get their lives together. People need to get on with it. You are holding us back.

Even more so because this is the part of the East Coast where “winter” means “an inch of snow, tops — anything more and we’ll coin a new term that ends in — -mageddon or -pocalypse.” We get it. We are wimps. If we were on the paleo diet, it would consist of our starving to death because we were terrible hunters. We couldn’t spear a mammoth if we tried. You’ve made your point.

Just make it stop.

© 2014, The Washington Post

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