Friday, May 13, 2016

"Oh, the weather outside is frightful ..."

I wonder if dogs would be less cheerful if they could understand things like weekend weather forecasts.

I know I spend an inordinate amount of time monitoring what the gurus say it’s going to do. Lots of people do, especially now that we carry tiny forecasters right in our pockets.

And I’m talking about our smart phone weather apps, not miniature weather men and women, which would be cool, but probably ticklish when they’d start waving their little arms around to signify unsettled weather patterns over Tornado Alley.

I know a lot of people in western Pennsylvania this week are feeling morose over the dreary forecast. The experts say it’s going to be a lousy weekend. The Sunday high is predicted to be 52, the low 36, and the telltale graphic is a snow flake.

Snow. On May 15th!

Outdoor recreations will be canceled, necessary yard work be put off, DIY projects stalled. It’s going to ruin a lot of weekends.

It won’t ruin mine.

I’m one of those guys who doesn’t care if the weather’s going to be influenced by High or Low Pressure.

No, I’m always on the lookout for the most delightful of all weather patterns: The No Pressure System.

And that’s exactly what we have this weekend at our home.

I’ll be unable to — hallelujah — do any loathsome yard work. The porch won’t get painted. Unruly branches will go unpruned. Not a single dandelion need fear a manly yanking.

Plus, and this is becoming incredibly rare, but we have nothing scheduled. No visitors. No parties. No activities. No worldly contact. 

It’s likely I’ll go 48 hours before even thinking about reaching for deodorant.

It’s like the situation has sentenced me to sort of solitary confinement with my three favorite cellmates.

Summer is put off for at least one more week.

I contend until every insect respects my 5-foot cone of privacy, summer will always be over-rated.

I hate the bugs. I hate the heat. I hate that the sun is out until 9:52 p.m. encouraging the kids to stay out exploding fire crackers in the driveway when I’d like to be in on my recliner sipping bourbon and watching something profane, violent and with full frontal nudity.

I think my disdain for summer has risen in direct proportion to the size of our TV screens; I liked summer a lot more when our TVs were all crappy.

For thematic consistency, we’ll likely watch “Frozen” for the 789th time. Guaranteed, we’ll be giving the TV a workout this weekend.

The fireplace, too.

Yes, we’re going to have a fire in the middle of May.

It’s going to take some persuasion. Val thinks looks at the calendar and thinks its crazy to have a fire. I consult a different gauge: The thermostat.

Nothing says cozy like a fireplace.

I love fireplaces.

I love fire.

I love writing, sure, but if I could find a legal way to make arson pay, I’d have to order a whole new stack of asbestos business cards.

And there will be soup. I love filling the house up with heady aroma of a really good broth on simmer since breakfast.

I guess I game plan like this, in part, because I realize how special weather-enforced togetherness can be.

Josie, 15, will have her driver’s license in September and Lucy, 9, is still so exuberantly precious I fear something’s got to give.

I’ve been blessed with the gift of appreciation. I hope you are, too. I’m able to realize how quickly family time like this can go away.

Our lives change like the weather and I like it anytime soulful contentment seems likely.

Lousy weekend?

It’s just not in my forecast.

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