Look out, February is here!
I was not surprised to discover global warming hasn’t prevented us from breaking long-standing frigid weather records this winter. As an Iowan, setting a new mark for lousy weather is just part of living here.
There's not much we can do about it – except move to a state or country with a warmer climate. After the way things have been going in those places, I will probably take my chances here.
Thus far this winter we have suffered through some temperatures colder than a frozen chicken pot pie. Makes one feel like he or she should be wrapped in a Swanson package and put on display in the freezer section of the grocery store. Unfortunately, February is now here.
Anyone who knows me knows that I'm not much of a February fan. For years I've campaigned to have the second month of the year wiped off our calendars. But to no avail.
I've always been amazed that a month which serves as the birthday for two of our greatest presidents can also be responsible for such lousy weather.
I guess that's not entirely true. Actually, February's weather usually isn't much worse than January's but by the time it rolls around, we're so sick of it that it seems worse.
Sure, it may be the shortest month of the year (day-wise) but it's got to be the longest one of the year (suffering-wise). If there's one good day, it'll make up for that with three or four lousy ones.
What really bugs me is the fact that in many southern states February marks the beginning of spring and the nice weather that comes with it.
Many years ago while I was in Texas in the army, I finally got a weekend leave. Upon the advice of some native Texans, I travelled down to Laredo for their annual festival.
When I got there, I couldn't believe my eyes. Most of the celebrating was taking place on the other side of the river – in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. That wasn't so surprising as was what they were celebrating: Washington's birthday! The fact that it came at the same time as the opening of the bull fighting season might have had something to do with that.
I celebrated Washington's birthday that year like many other good red-blooded Texan did – at the bull fights in Mexico. I even paid the extra money so I could sit on the shady side of the arena.
This year I won't be watching any bull fights. I'll be scooping the snow our weather forecasters say isn't coming and lugging around a ton of clothes to keep warm even though it's suppose to be warmer than normal.
And, as I've said before, there is a simple solution to this whole thing. All we would have to do is add two or three days to each of the other months and PRESTO – no February.
Sure, dating a check January 33 might take some getting used to, but when you rip January off your calendar and see March staring you in the face – that will more than make up for it.
Meanwhile we might as well settle down in the warmth of our homes, pick up the seed catalog all of us received in the mail last week, and dream about spring and summer.
Actually, I feel a cold coming on. That’s only right. After all, what better way to celebrate February than with a good, old-fashioned cold?
Ed Rood is the former publisher of the Tri-County Times.