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Wednesday, December 01, 2004

The Opposite of Hot Tuna, Continued

Cold hurts. People argue about which is worse, hot weather or cold, but they lose sight of this fact. Stub your toe on a freezing cold day and it's way worse than on a hot day. Unless it's sunburned, perhaps.

But my aversion to cold may be associated with having to walk home from school on cold windy days. I didn't seem to mind it that much on weekends. Especially if it snowed and there was something to do. When I got old enough to be in charge of moving snow and driving in it, my attitude changed dramatically.

Having lived in Florida now for two years, anything below 70 is unreasonably cold. I deeply resent it when it happens here. Usually it's only late at night but we have our days. A nasty trick of nature. It happens more frequently in the winter up here in north Florida where I'm vacationing now on Amelia Island. Down in Venice on the South West coast, it's more unusual.

The most unpleasant winter memory of my childhood, then, involves a family down the block who must have been on an all fish diet. I delivered their paper and once a month had to knock on their door to get their money. On a cold blustery day, an open door into a warm house was extremely welcome. Except there. When they opened to my knock, I was frozen from behind by the day's arctic blast and assaulted by the rush of warm fish monger air. They were nice people. Always smiling. But I think it made them seem demonic in the context of a house that smelled like the dumpster outside an all night fish restaurant. I often went months, not collecting their money to avoid them.

It occurs to me that the life of an Eskimo or anyone living in a northern seafaring/fishing town would be as unpleasant to me as a double stretch in Hell. Yet there are people who retire to places like that. Sr. Mary Confusing said Hell is a hot place. That's her opinion.

posted by Bud @ 7:00 AM

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