Jim Wilcox, Guest Columnist
As it is now officially spring, I suppose all you young’uns are screaming for joy.
“Oh, it’s so lovely today. Let’s throw a Frisbee outside. Go get Jake and Bailey.”
“I’m pumped about packing away my long johns and grabbing my shorts, dockers and sleeveless jerseys I got on Amazon.”
“Wanna go swimming down at La Quinta?”
Yada yada yada blah blah blah yeah yeah yeah. You and your kind can prance in the meadows all you want, working up a good glisten before dinner. Go ahead: play catch, pretend to study outside, get your toes good and scratchy in the volleyball pits.
But while you’re doing all of that, I will be missing my cold and gray winter. I really, really do love autumn and winter. Winter is when I can hide my odd body shape behind jackets and coats and sweats. I can sleep with the blowing sleet tap-tap-tapping on my bedroom window. That extra quilt feels oh so good.
And there was fall a few months ago. The days shortened, the moon turned yellow, and the leaves padded each lazy step. The skies were adorned in various shades of gray and the breezes that had burned our skin in August were turning around to come out of the north. 80-degree highs gave way to 50-degree lows; then 50-degree highs plummeted to 20-degree lows. Every degree that fell off the thermometer brought relief to my sweat-weary soul.
So lap up the rays with your young, smooth skin. Swim in the water until your entire body starts to pucker. Soon these spring time temperatures will be setting as many heat records as this winter set with arctic freezes.
Channel 4: “We’ll likely see three digits for the next few weeks, so get out those fans.”
Channel 5: “I saw a guy broiling a steak on his forehead as I drove in to work today.”
Channel 9: “Where’s Gary England?”
I will admit to one part of spring weather that I really enjoy: thunderstorms bringing the sweet beat of peaceful sleep. Flashes of light so bright, it’s temporarily blinding. Rumbles so loud, it’s temporarily deafening. And when those two phenomena occur at the exact same second, it’s like bowling night in the heavens.
One spring afternoon in Nampa, Idaho, when I was a college student (in the loosest of sense of the word), my brother was supposed to meet a small group of us in the library. (I don’t know what we were doing in there. We didn’t have cell phones, laptops or electronic research tools—nope—just malodorous books and voluminous Readers Guides to Periodical Literature.)
John was uncharacteristically late, but he finally arrived, white as a ghost and drenched as a carwash towel.
“See that tree out there, the one split from top to roots? I was two feet away from that when it was struck by lightning. I’m still shaking. It was simultaneously sun-surface blinding and nuclear bomb deafening. At the very same nanosecond. I thought I was dead.”
Now that was a great day!