In the old days, I never got cold til Christmas. Below zero weather and I'm wearing a t-shirt and no long johns. I couldn't understand why Jenny needed the thermostat any higher than 65 degrees and would chuckle at the thermo-nuclear setting she put the electric blanket on. Yeah, those were the good ol' days. Tolerance to the cold is the fat guy's advantage. You can scoff at the skinflints who are whining about the cold. There's a reason why you rarely see skinny people in those Polar Bear Club swims on New Year's Day. Fat guys stay warm the same way walruses stay warm: Fat repels the cold!
I realized that fact just a little too late. Today, in Chicago, I went out for my walk around the airport with my t-shirt and gym trunks, an extra long sleeve t-shirt and sweatpants and a sweatshirt. It was 48 degrees with a 40 mph wind. Despite all those clothes and the heat my body produced by walking at a good pace, I froze! WTF! I never got cold in September before! I didn't even know it was possible. I used to sweat like a pig when I shoveled snow in below zero weather. Today, I couldn't pop a bead of sweat if I ran a mile, on my hands! I'm sitting here in the hotel with the heater on max (75 degrees is the highest it will go) and I'm freezing. They don't tell you this at the Weight Watcher meetings. "Go ahead and lose that gut, bozo, and next winter, your shivering alone will keep you thin!" In the dictionary, under shivering, you won't see William Howard Taft's picture! Abe Lincoln's maybe, but not Billy Boy's!
So here I am wondering what the heck to do. I got an arctic lined Carharrt jacket that fits me nicely (thanks Jen!) and some jackets I haven't worn in 10 years. They fit nicely but the styling is a bit outdated. I've got a ton of sweatshirts that are a tad too big. No problem, I like 'em loose. Sweaters? Maybe now they won't look like a second skin on me. I like sweaters, but until now, they didn't like me!
For the last month, I've been bringing a sweatshirt with me in my bag to wear when the engineer turns on the air conditioner. One day last week, I even turned on the side heater when he turned on the A.C. I used to think we needed central air in our house. Not anymore. I only turned the window A.C. on four times this summer. That $5000 would be much better spent if I bought something nice for the kids. (Just checking to see if they still read this!) If we ever sell the place, I'll have the realtor target market skinny people. They won't even ask about central air or the lack of it!
Used to be when some skinny person would whine about the cold, I would think "Suck it up, Slats. Its only zero!" Now, I'll be a little more tolerant in my thoughts. No more will I turn down the thermostat to 69. I used to think "Geez, put on a sweater!". Let Lucy out on the back porch? Heck no, Its cold out there! One line I'd use when someone would crank up the heat way high was "Geez, grow an immune system!" As the one with the skinny little finger on the heat button, I'll be more tolerant. I still can't figure out why my Aunt Frieda kept her home at 85 degrees in the winter. They weren't skinnies. Must've got too cold during the depression. Might've gotten scared by an evil snowman or something.
Last winter, I never wore long johns. This winter I'll probably double up on them. I better get the snow blower fixed. I'm not friends with the cold anymore. I better start saving the big bucks because I see winters in Florida in my future! Hurricanes? Bring 'em on! Wild fires? Try me! Living with Southerners? Make that a double order of grits! But shivering in September? Pack up the Edge, sweetie!!
Now some of you may think that I'm exaggerating just a tad. Those who have read this blog for the last year and a half know that I never exaggerate! I'm as serious as a holy roller preacher on Sunday. I'm as serious as Oprah at the buffet or Sarah Palin at the turkey farm! Now, some of you may think that I'm doing all this whining just to get some cuddle time with Jenny. I'm not as warm as I used to be so she won't be as interested. I used to be a veritable furnace and even in July, her feet were icicles!
On cold winter mornings, I used to come downstairs and Jen would be just standing there. So would Shannon and (our dog) Cheaney. I finally asked what was up and learned that they were standing on warm spots where the heating pipes went through the cement floor. I used to shake my head (and both chins) and chuckle at their foolishness. Now, I'm looking for a floor heat map!!
Now I'm on a train heading for home and my engineer has his window open so I'll sorta walk over to the heater switches and voila... thermonuclear heat!!!
In an unrelated matter, I spent a great Sunday with Jen. First, we went to Indy and had lunch with Shane-0, celebrating his birthday and finished the day visiting Taylor and Jaden (and their folks). It doesn't get any better than that. I mention this (besides the enormous pride I have in my family) as an intro to disclosing an amazing fact. Its still less than 3 weeks after little Taylor was born and Shannon is within ten pounds of her pre-Taylor weight! Way to go, honey bun! You are an amazing person! You know what she said to me? "Starting to look more like my dad!"
Forever and a day.....
7 years ago