Last night, I went to fill up the gas tank in my Malibu. It was cold all day, which I knew because I had been working at a window for eleven hours (no, I do not work at a fast food drive-thru). In case I hadn’t realized that it was cold, my dear friends on Facebook told me. Hello, it’s mid-January. In the Heart of America. One day of 60-degree weather doesn’t mean Spring should be here now, so quit your belly-aching! Anyway, the air was crisp and it started to snow while I was driving. This made my heart warm. I knew it wouldn’t be the kind of snow that sticks to the ground and allows people to build forts and snowmen, but I thought it was pretty. And then I realized how underappreciated snow is.
The first time it snowed this season, I was in bed catching up on some TV. My mom ran into my room, towel on her head, and said, “Come quick! Come look out my bathroom window!” (She had a reason for this. Her window faces the backyard, and it’s easier to see rain or sleet or snow juxtaposed against the green grass.) So, I ran to her room and, lo and behold, there were giant bundles of snowflakes falling from the sky, like illogically placed dandruff (I know that’s the most appealing simile to employ). My mom started singing “Welcome Christmas” from The Grinch (or, as I like to call it, “that fa who song”), and the rest of the day felt magical because the snow was mutually appreciated. (P.S. My mom is better than your mom!)
As silly as it sounds, though, not all snow is created equally. The people who get excited about snow can also be the ones who feel contempt for it if it doesn’t last long. When it even so much as sprinkles snow, I get excited and I tell the people around me. But I am often met with disdain because “It’s not enough to make it a snow day” or “My kids really want to have a snowball fight” or, even more ridiculously, “There is no reason for it to be this cold if the snow isn’t going to stick”. The child inside me screams for retribution of some sort toward those who discriminate about what type of snow falls on their pretty little heads. You can’t claim to “love snow” and then mourn the days it graces your front stoop but doesn’t stick around to allow you a day off work! It is also just as illogical to “love snow” and then throw F-bombs around your car when you’re stuck in traffic because of snow. It almost brings tears to my eyes. If you love snow, you must cherish it. Even with all of its flaws.
So last night while I was standing outside of my car, hating myself for not wearing gloves, I let myself take some deep breaths as I watched the snow fall gracefully onto my windshield. Not all of the snow fell in perfect flake shapes. It didn’t cover my car in crystalline whimsy. Hell, most of them melted as soon as I started the car to leave. But snow is natural. And all nature—no matter what span of time it exists for—is temporary. So appreciate it while you can.
SO Note: What do you think is underappreciated? Let Meredith know at firstname.lastname@example.org or @Serial_Optimist.
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