One thing about winter. Vanity fades faster than the sun in late summer, and it won’t come back until the snow melts and spring flowers bloom.
At least, that tendency fades after the age of 30. The younger generation seems to think it’s important for both men and women to look fashionable regardless of the weather. One day they will discover how wrong it is. When the temperature drops into her teens, being fashionable is just as important as making Wordle his second guess.
I remember being young and vain enough not to wear a hat during a blizzard because I didn’t want my hair flat, but I got over it when I realized warm ears always beat flat hair .
The times have not changed. You see a lot of young people wearing stylish and expensive ripped jeans. Holes up to the hips, trying to look like airy pants, blizzards are a good idea. They will learn too.
There’s also a tendency for young men to wear shorts to prove they’re tough, even when the mercury refuses to go above minus 10 degrees. I’m sorry, but that doesn’t prove you’re tough against the rest of the world. It looks like you have serious judgment problems, so don’t plan a career in anything to do with logic. I hope you haven’t.
After the last snowstorm, my husband climbed on the roof and shoveled the snow. He had to wear at least his five layers of clothing. Once inside, I was like an annoyed snowman. He was shoveling snow off our roof not because he wanted to, but if he didn’t, it’s a winter scenario I never thought of before moving to the upper Midwest. This is because ice dams may form.
It amazes me that he shovels the roof and driveway almost cheerfully. If I had been the main player in the shovel, I would have received many complaints from local residents and many inquiries from the city. At times, I think he enjoys the challenge his eight inches of snowfall brings. Other times I think the snow has frozen his brain.
Living in the North has also shed light on new forms of male bonding/bragging.
“What did you get?” I once heard my husband ask his companion to shovel the snow. “Alien? John Deere? International?”
This question is always followed by a long and often boring (for those who don’t use snow blowers) talk about chute control, headlights and heated hand grips.
At the end of the conversation, both men walk away satisfied. The Great North men know what’s important—as Oldman as possible he can fight off Winter.
I’ve tolerated Mark’s adherence to snow blowers. Ultimately, the snow blower we bought was too big and too heavy for us to know how to start, let alone use.
Until last year, I think he was saying, “Don’t feel left out,” when he gifted me a small battery-powered snow blower.
“I never felt left out,” I assured him. If anything, I felt I had done my part by staying inside and preparing a hot toddy for him when he was done handling the snow.
But being handed the gauntlet, I got to know new toys and even got to enjoy blowing snow. Not many, but something.
It also gave me my own bragging rights and the ability to ask my friends what kind of snowblower they had. When you live up north, one thing you can count on is the long winters, which make for a lot of conversation about the weather.