The other night, our TV weatherman was almost giddy with delight as he gleefully described the frigid cold weather we’ve been having.
“It’s a very bitter cold minus -19 degrees outside.” He boasted with a demented cheerfulness in his voice. “And, when I factor in that nasty, wicked wind, it makes it feel more like minus -27. Burr…..”
It seemed to me he was proud of the cold but needed to find a way to make it seem even more ridiculously cold. Seriously, it’s only -19 below zero, there must be some way I can make that sound worse – this is news reporting after all. I know, I’ll factor in the wind chill.
Of course, living in Canada (national motto: Colder than a penguins back-passage), one has to expect a little bit of cold weather. But why, after announcing how brutally cold it is, do Canadians insist on adding frosty insult to icy injury by factoring in the wind chill?
The weather report then went to a video of four crazy guys from way up North where it was minus -39 with a windchill of -53. Bizarre as it may be, these sick, unbalanced madmen were actually bragging about their almost off the charts cold temperatures, whilst mocking those of us in Canada’s “southern banana belt” by wearing only their t-shirts.
Seriously, these numb skulls (their skulls were likely numb) were taunting the camera crew, suggesting that southern Canada was for weather wusses. The spokesman of the group, a very rugged looking individual, was actually shirtless.
“Up here in Moosebutt (town motto: Colder than Pluto)” he boasted, “we know what cold is, and this ain’t it! You southern weather wimps have no clue. Heck, up here it can get so cold, your lungs will freeze up solid if you happen to sneeze and fart at the same time!”
With the prideful, swaggering way he spoke, you’d think frostbite was prestigious and that cold was a competition. One had to seriously wonder whether these guys had smashed their collective toboggan into a telephone pole before agreeing to do the interview. Seriously, if you’ve stooped to bragging about who has the coldest temperatures, you’ve obviously forgotten to take your medication.
Anyway, I have only one thing to say to my hearty northern compatriots… stick your heads into your microwaves – two minutes on power level four. That ought to thaw out your frozen brains. Put on your parkas for Pete’s sake. I get cold just watching you. Sorry guys, I guess I should be ashamed to call myself a Canadian because, unlike you, I’d prefer not to freeze my privates off.
Suffice it to say, I’m not a winter person. True, winter does surreptitiously pull me in. I think it’s the lure of the Christmas holidays that does it. A scenic and romantic white blanket of snow on Christmas can get me through the first part of winter relatively pain free. With the holidays and all that fluffy white stuff caressing the landscape, snow can inspire my significant other to say, “Oh look honey, it’s snowing! Let’s go for a walk. I love it when it snows!”
Of course by mid January, that sentiment is usually replaced. The snow is no longer fluffy or lovely, it’s bloody irritating and, my significant-others words have been superseded with a grumpy, gruff, “Hey you lazy loaf, get off that couch, grab your shovel and get out there. I swear, if I see another damned snowflake, I’m going to go down to that TV station and strangle that stupid weatherman with my bare hands – on camera!” Indeed, once the holidays are over, all that’s left is grumpy old lady winter.
Indeed, January is the time of year when I question my grandfather’s sanity. You see, before he immigrated to this Canadian festival of slush a hundred or so years ago, he actually had a choice between this frozen slab of ice-covered dirt and the tropical paradise of Australia.
I can’t understand why he chose Canada. It’s not like the name ‘Canada’ sounds irresistibly inviting. If only Canada had been named something more appropriate like ‘Freezyurfrigginbuttoffia,’ maybe then my grandfather would have chosen Australia, and right now I’d be a well-tanned Aussie writing something totally dorky sounding like… ‘G’Day mate. May your chooks turn into emus and kick your dunny down’ – whatever the hell that means.