Dear Old Man, Screw You: A Father’s Open Letter To WintertimeSerge Bielanko
What’s up cranky old man who creates winds that mess up my whole life?
Let me ask you something, dude. Have you ever tried to stand out in the park with a two year-old and a four year-old while bitter gusts slam into their cheeks and make them nearly weep with pain?
No? I didn’t think so.
No you have not.
You lucky bastard, you get to skip out on the whole ‘kids in winter’ thing, don’t ya? You think you make it snow a couple of times and get them a day or three off school and toss in a few ‘Opening Two Hours Late’ days and you are a friend to the children. You have the gall to think that you can fake them out with Snow Days and that’s just the same as having to hang out with one or two of them every single damn day from November to like April?
Hell no, dog.
You are no friend to anyone as far as I can tell, except maybe the skiing set (crazies) and the people who just got a new North Face coat for Christmas (c’mon, the whole ‘North Face Status High‘ has got to peak out at like six months to a year, right?)
Check out this list for a sec:
Mud, creeks, beaches, green grass, fish with energy, blue skies, meaningful sunshine, apples, tomatoes, birds, bird nests, bird eggs, lakes that have ripples, 9pm sunsets, hot pepper plants, bikinis, warm rain plops, ice cream, the button in the car that rolls the windows down, favorite t-shirts, distant lawnmower hum, leaves in the breeze, bare feet, swimming pools, fresh basil, bird songs, bird baths, baby birds, baseball, bar-b-que smoke, peaches, front porches, and yard sales.
You know what all of that is, old man?
That’s right. It’s all the wonderful stuff that you ruin when you show up.
And it isn’t fair, I don’t think.
I’ve tried, too.
I’ve tried to make it all work somehow.
I have done my best to see your long slow trip across our days as something that could be enjoyed, savored even, if I just embraced the chilled subtlety of it all. Hell, sometimes in the middle of one of your wintery afternoons, around say 3:30…or you know, SUNDOWN, I try my damnedest to get my daughter and son all excited about having a big old steaming mug of hot cocoa (with tasteless marshmallows!) at the kitchen island as a way to make battle with our horrific doldrums.
It’s quaint, I tell them.
“Sip it!” I say. “It’s a neato way to have fun here on a day when it’s 16 degrees outside and even hibernating squirrels are dreaming of offing themselves.”
Then, with the most sincere eyes you have ever seen in your long life, Mr. Icy Veinz, they glare up at me with the same look usually reserved for a freshly ripped-off mafioso.
It’s then that I realize what they are capable of…what any seemingly innocent soul painted black by the howling relentless gales of winter is truly capable of if they don’t get into a tanning booth or something quick.
I see my own flesh and blood munchkins standing there boring a laser hole in my forehead. It gives me the heebeejeebies.
They turn into the twins from The Shining.
Screw you, wintertime. I hope global warming kicks your ass all the way back to Finland or wherever you come from.
You can also find Serge on his personal blog, Thunder Pie.
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