Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Graceful, I am not. Or, why winter can suck it.
Regardless of whether I completely change my tune in the dead-still heat of summer and get all wistful for autumn and crisp air (sweaters! yay!) and shit like that, let me go on record as say this: WINTER CAN BITE MY ASS.
Winter in Chicago is like a special breed of sadistic, pain-enducing, alcohol-swilling, blanket-layering, extremity-numbing cold. (I like to refer to this as bitch-ass cold.)
I know it's not Alaska and there are other places with latitudes worse than mine where it sucks even more. But that does not keep me from frequently (and with an expert amount of only child finesse) complaining to all my friends who live in the practically tropical climates of the Mid-Atlantic and deep South.
In fact, my complaints have become so standard that we have an unspoken deal. I am given unfettered complaining rights from roughly October until mid- to late-April. And then, it's their turn. I have to shut up and listen to the freakishly hot and humid stories of life in Tennessee, Georgia, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Alabama, just to name a few. I think it's a fair trade.
In addition to cold-weather bragging rights, Chicago's winter also involves learning to navigate the slip-and-slide that is virtually any flat surface within a day of snowfall. Sure, shoveling sidewalks is required by law. Does it happen? Riiiight.
Twelve hours after flakes fall, unshoveled sidewalks start to get slick. Twelve more and shoveling is almost impossible after all the trampling. Twenty-four more and you may as well strap skates to the soles of your shoes to try to make it to the bus stop without a concussion.
This makes for particularly dangerous walking when you're someone like me, who might be charitably described as gracefully challenged. (I have on more than one occasion been called a walking bruise. Also, a gazelle. By, um, my mother. Seriously, there was the Ass-Over-Elbows Escalator Fall of 2006 that almost required an ambulance; the Gushing Mountain Bike Injury the summer before that really should have involved stitches. There's a list.)
Anyway, this is a long-winded complaint that leads to this:
That's my knee cap after a rather stunning fall this morning on the bus. Ice-caked shoes and a snow-soaked floor are not a good combo and I bit it. Hard. Making matters worse, the bus had barely started to pull away from my stop. I really should have just gotten off at the next stop and hobbled the hell home to mope in the comfort of my bed.
Fast forward 45 minute to me, grateful to have shaved in the last millennium, sitting at my desk with with my jeans and long-johns rolled up while icing my bare leg. Classy.
Is it spring yet?