Cold Sweat by Ezra Dyer

Brrr. Feel the chill? Winter is on its way. But don’t worry: There are tons of fun ways to enjoy the season and have a blast despite the sun being a cold dead orb that barely seems to struggle above the horizon before the wizened claw of frigid darkness once again tightens its bony grip upon the land. So don’t just huddle inside drinking cold Ruski vodka and eating your vitamin D pills—get out there and have a great time with these outdoor ideas that’ll turn your life into a winter fun-derland!

Snowshoeing. Snowshoeing is magical. Instead of laboriously slogging through deep powder, punching down and dragging your boots back to the surface with each punishing step, snowshoes allow you to glide gracefully across the surface. Oh, I’m sorry—those are cross-country skis. Snowshoes are giant baskets you strap to your feet, and wearing them is considered a sign of hypothermia-induced mental impairment. Snowshoeing is like trying to use an elliptical machine with both feet jammed into trash cans, or dancing a mambo in Satan’s clogs. It’s said that the Inuit have 100 words for snow and not one word for why anyone would wear snowshoes.

Sledding. In fifth grade, there was an eighth-grader who was kicking the little kids down the sledding hill before they could reach the top. So, as I climbed up near his boots, I reached out and wrapped him up, toppling him all the way down the hill and filling the pockets of his Jordaches with snow. He responded by giving me a wedgie hard enough to rip my underwear. So you’ve got to be really careful when you’re sledding.

Skiing. Oftentimes the temperature in Boston will sink into the teens or lower. You know what that means: time to go north and seek higher elevation. When you get to the mountain, you’ll park in Lot 15, which is that many miles from the base lodge. Then you’ll carry your $2,000 worth of gear to the lodge, where everyone removes their normal shoes and hides them under a cafeteria table. You put on your ski boots, which require you to walk like you have a loaded diaper, then realize that you have to go to the bathroom, which is down six flights of stairs. By the time you clomp there and back, it’s lunchtime. After lunch, you decide to head to the summit, which is easily accessible from the base lodge. All you do is take the T-bar to the top of Silly Goose, then ski down to the Rabid Moose quad and take it back up to Head Wound Gully. You ski that down to the Chairway to Hell low-speed triple, and then from there it’s back down Certain Dismemberment, where you traverse over to the gondola. There, a guy named Xander who’s just taking a year off to figure things out will herd you and five strangers into a small box, where you’ll spend the next 10 minutes avoiding eye contact and praying nobody farts. When the gondola doors reopen, you’ll find yourself watching the sunset from the majesty of the mid-mountain lodge. So you ski back down to the base lodge, which takes 30 seconds, and get into some après-ski, which involves frostbitten people with reconstructed knees getting drunk to Dave Matthews Band covers while wearing winter hats indoors. It might all sound like a lot, but you can learn to be a competent skier even if you start at an advanced age, by which I mean no later than 6.

Ice skating. Winter just isn’t winter without a deep bone bruise, so why not go for the coccyx?

Ice fishing. Ice fishing is when you cut a hole in the ice and then build a six-bedroom house around it, complete with NFL Sunday Ticket in the game room and a two-car garage. One night, during a dinner party, the caterer offers a heavy passed hors d’oeuvre—some kind of beef with chevre thing, really good—and your friend Jeff takes a step back and puts his foot right down through the fishing hole, which is next to the half-bath off the kitchen, and you’re like, “Hey Jeff, careful buddy! We’re fishing.” Then the next week the ice melts and everyone is rescued by hovercraft.

Building a snowman. Building a snowman is a playful way to tell Mother Nature that a little bit of sticky precipitation won’t stop you from fashioning pagan idols. Traditional snowmen have lumps of coal for their eyes and mouth, but you should celebrate carbon-neutral energy by using chunks of uranium. The fun thing about making a snowman is that the rolling snowballs pick up anything that was on the ground, making for all sorts of neat surprises. Say, did you clean up after your dog before it snowed, or does Mr. Shivers have a funny-looking pipe in his mouth? No and yes! Don’t worry too much about getting him perfect, because he’s just going to melt. Probably no later than St. Patrick’s Day.

Cold Sweat

Here are some cool ideas for soaking up the sub-zero weather.

I cannot for the life of me figure out how to share the actual page on Improper Bostonian so I copied and pasted giving full credit to Ezra Dyer. This article had me laughing so hard at 6:30 am with lack of coffee in my system. Why is it so funny to me? Because certain ideas resonate so strongly. Thank you Ezra!


The Ho-Ho-Ho-liday Meltdown

Key West Turkey

Key West Turkey

Thanksgiving = thrown into a cement mixer with larger boulders, add desert dry turkey, brain-dead family members that even a zombie would pass up, set mixer on high, pour, and be instantly ready for Christmas shopping… sound familiar?

My holiday has been quiet thus far; simple dinner with my dad, daughter and her boyfriend, (my hot guy was busy saving the town)…after all it’s about the people you care about not forced family fun (for me anyway).

After this somewhat restful holiday, how could it be that I would sit up in bed as though I had been given a defibrillation? The thought of Christmas shopping had set in. What to buy and who to buy for is as difficult as trigonometry or calculus for me (pretty much adding and subtraction puts me over the edge who am I kidding?!).

  1. Make a list of recipients
  2. Cut out half of those people because, seriously, I feel guilty about not buying them a gift, not because I really like them
  3. Make a list of ‘others’ who won’t receive gifts (and then cut that list down to 12) and mail card with lots of glitter, just to be annoying.

Down to about 5 actual gifts to be wrapped…seemingly doable.

The parent: At this point, dad is just two eyeballs and a hat, looking through a mound of 85 years’ worth of gifts consisting of sweaters, shirts, turtlenecks, ties, socks, slippers, puzzle pieces, and smells like Old Spice. (I happen to love Old Spice so that’s the upside)

The daughter: The last two years I have been successful with tickets to shows (Kathy Griffin = HILARIOUS!) but actually opening a gift is a tough one. Clothes? Jewlery? Shoes? Meh. I keep scouring the ‘net for inspiration.  She is always happy and thankful for the smallest thing, especially spending time together, which is why I like to put every neuron into a good gift. As you have seen we do activities year round, bigger trips a la Canada, St. Martin, and cruises, indoor skydiving, glass blowing, schooner sailing, etc. so coming up with gifts because it’s a holiday is much more difficult-the pressure is on. She asks for a pony at every opportunity, but a pony would be bigger than her car (so no room), take up all the room in the apartment (still no room), and would be forced to live on Ramen noodles and blue cheese pasta (that’s just priming the poor thing for the glue factory).

The hot boyfriend: God help me please. I have tried everything and it’s never right. It is not that he is ungrateful; I know he appreciates my time and effort; it is just a poor choice of gifts on my part. For his birthday last year I purchased an airplane lesson, complete with flying time in this cool little prop plane for two. Although he is quick to show friends the pictures, it took 8 months and lots of nagging to make the reservation, so it loses something in the gift.  A few years ago I bought him an automatic starter for his truck; I returned it because the installation would cause too much interior damage of sorts. Clothes and gift certificates typically don’t get worn or used… he doesn’t have any hobbies… I am at a loss.  And I don’t want any lame-o ideas of a ‘coupon book good for hugs, kisses, date night, or massage by yours truly’….put some effort into it please.

Any and all suggestions from my readers will be paid in gummy bears if you can help me not have a HO-HO-HO-liday meltdown (gummy bears will be paid in virtual thanks only).

The Scarlet Snowflake

scarletsnowflakeI fear I am branded with the ‘Scarlet Snowflake’ because of my love of Snow.

I hear the whispering behind my back, the looks of utter disgust when I share my secrets of stolen moments watching Snow quietly fall during the day or through the streetlight’s glow at night.  How could I possibly be in love with Snow – he is so selfish and has no care for anyone and their driveway! He laughs at how many layers of clothing you must endure to step outside for just a moments time…yet I know he loves me back, with the frozen smiles I have daily, listening to the Cardinals that only sing their melodious song in the winter or the small animal tracks that I find across the freshly powdered path…

He has not been so timid in his love for me, sharing well over 5 feet of his fluffy dandruff and still looking as clean cut and magnificent as the first time I lay eyes on him. And as the wind blows it is hard not to be reminded of Fabio on his most romantic novel cover…swirling long locks of tiny flakes in all directions and just a hint of a crooked smile.

YES I LOVE SNOW! – There I said it for all to hear !

I cannot contain my feelings any longer!

I am a traitor and outcast, and ready to endure the pitchforks (shovels, ice-filled snowballs…) of the village people! You cannot break true love!

(picture credit: unknown)

Springtime on our minds

Although officially the first day of winter occured just yesterday, here in New England we are anxiously awaiting the first days of spring and thoughts of warmer days, the smell of damp dirt, and the pop of color, that will come just when we think Mother Nature has abandon us. Enjoy these flowers from my father’s garden and think of the sunshine washing over your face….