News and Tribune


February 11, 2013

CUMMINS: The heart needs warming in winter, too

Skin doctors say sunshine is dangerous. That’s why I stay north under cloud cover during winters. Head doctors say gloom will depress you. Jet-stream trackers say this world is undergoing climate change. You never know from one day to the next whether to coat yourself with sunscreen or goose-feathers. Either God is trying to tell us to wise up, or else man thinks he is some type of God, and considers fossil fuels a blessing. Why don’t we do something about the weather before it does all these things to us? Should we pray, or insist Congress conduct weather hearings? 

What irks me is my friends, who go south during winters, send Florida oranges to me as if I’m catching scurvy. These weakling sunshine worshipers also send sneering get-well cards. “It was 84 here today as the waves gently lapped over the white sand, soothing our feet as we sipped cold drinks before barbecuing fresh shrimp during which the pelicans and seagulls darted to-and-fro. To keep warm, we’ll migrate north when the birds do and see you then.”  

What’s an elder do when the wind-chill factor ices him to the bone? Ever wonder why grandma bundles up, or why grandpa wears long-johns with buttons front and back? In the old days, long-johns were a one-piece undergarment with the men’s having two buttons at the front crouch area and five in the back below the waist for quickness when he had to go.  

It’s not that bad now because gramps have other things to warm them. The thermostat replaced the fireplace and insulation replaced the old newspapers used for stuffing cracks. When grandpa says, “My feet are cold,” loving children fill hot-water bottles for him.

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