But you’re never really ready when it does…
Yes, I am talking about winter. Now I know we don’t have it anywhere near as bad as they do in Buffalo were in Orchard Park, where the Buffalo Bills play, they got over seventy-seven inches of snow. I’m glad we don’t get that kind of avalanche of snow here.
I grew up in Syracuse, so I know what snows all about. And the smart guy that I am, I went to college at Oswego State (where we set all time snowfall records two of the years I was there). As if that wasn’t enough, I headed to University of Buffalo (now University AT Buffalo for some reason) for two wonderful years of grad school.
My kids know all the stories. “Yeah, yeah, it snowed so much one year, you couldn’t find your car for six weeks.” It’s true. But they just roll their eyes when I tell them for the forty-fifth time.
Or how about the time freshman year where they put up ropes between the dorms. I watched out the window of my dorm room where a guy tried to get to class but the wind was so strong, it blew him backwards on the ice. “Three times! Yes, Dad, you told us a hundred times, jeepers.” Well, it’s true.
In Buffalo, I tore ligaments in my right ankle playing some pickup basketball one winter. As such, I had a cast on for six weeks and had to drive my car to class (we had three campuses at UB, and I lived in a house a mile away). I had to drive left footed with my right foot on the transmission hump. I also had to clear my car off while on crutches underneath several feet of snow. (They’ve heard that story six or eight times too.)
Then there is Keene, New Hampshire, a lovely little town in southwest NH that is surrounded by smaller mountains so sunset can be around 3:30 in the winter. Keene is where I got my first job after college. To be honest, I had no idea where exactly New Hampshire was. I lived there off and on for about eight years. Just wonderful people there and just about the best friends a person could ask for. After a while, the cold weather finally got to me. As I was dressing for work one cold February morning, I listened to the weatherman say, “It’s minus twenty-five degrees with a high of minus nine.” I looked at myself in the mirror, while tying my tie, and said to myself, “Nope. That’s enough. I’m done. I am not staying here.” I gave my notice a couple months later and headed to sunny Charlotte, North Carolina where in mid-November, it was seventy degrees and sunny once I pulled into my new apartment. Of course, four years later, I met this woman who was born and raised in Vermont, but once again, I digress.
Now, the winters are not as bad here as in all those places. It gets windy but I just focus my mind to April when I know it will slowly get warmer and I will have survived another five months of cold and darkness.
The cold weather helps to keep you young. The blood doesn’t move much in your system, so it preserves your youth a bit. It’s what I like to think happens anyhow.
I was texting back and forth with my cousin from Grafton, not to be confused with my cousin from Athens, when we were both lamenting the amount of free time we have. If we had more time, we could do so much more with our lives; solve world hunger, improve our putting and chipping game, or eat more chocolate chip cookies while drinking the finest of IPA’s. But I digress.
He had gifted me a free subscription to a really good Substack author who he thought I might like. The author had been writing for years but not always being able to write exactly what he wanted. He really wanted to pursue writing as a career and be able to write what he wanted and what he thought others might want to hear. (He sounds a bit like me only with lots more experience and perhaps a bit of talent.)
I’ve found that lately, as I’ve gotten just slightly older, I’m toast by nine o’clock at night. My big, black leather reclining chair calls me over. Then it’s just me and the remote until I fall asleep. It doesn’t take long either. If I make it until 10:15, I’m feeling like a youngster. So, if I don’t sit and do some writing after working all day and getting in my workout at the gym, not much scribbling gets done.
I try hard to do this daily. I’m lucky that my workouts are done by six and my lovely bride works out a little later than me. If she were home, her infectious smile, brains and beauty would distract me even more from my writing exploits but alas, once again, I digress.
In texting my cousin from Grafton, I noted that it was be great if there were a switch on the phone that told you that your fifteen minutes were up. A nice flashing message could come up saying, “Your time for goofing off is over! Do something constructive with your life!” I told him that maybe we could create such an app and save all of humanity from itself.
That is when my younger cousin from Grafton texted and said, “iPhone has Screen Time triggers.”
I told him to enlighten me. He did. He created a quick video and showed me how to do so. These kids nowadays know their technology.
He gave me some other tips too. I should floss more often, separate whites from the rest of my laundry basket and shave more often as the white beard does not enhance my looks. I thanked him for that and all the other time saving tips.
That’s all I got for today. After setting up my phone to shut down, I’m about to use up all the time on my app and the timer is about to go off.
Until next time….