by Chason Gordon
- The Capitol Hill Times -
The great thing about being in the womb is that there are no seasons. You can wear the same placenta all year and never be too hot or too cold or out of fashion. For those of us outside the womb (most of my demographic), things aren’t so easy. To help the transition, here is your definitive, shovel-ready, nonperishable guide to winter.
Throwing snowballs is pretty much the only time you’re allowed to physically assault someone without getting arrested (throwing pies is an exception as well, but pie parts don’t fall from the sky and can’t be rolled together from little pieces in the street). Traditionalists only use snow for snowballs, which is fine. I prefer to explore the boundaries of snowball construction, and will fill them with various things, including ice, rocks, pee, marbles, pink slips, glitter, mercury, water balloons, mice and several tiny rolled-up snowballs. What’s crucial is the element of surprise. This is best achieved by only throwing snowballs indoors, like in an office or a daycare or a Turkish bath.
What’s truly wonderful about December is that it allows us to break out our pretentious winter clothing and dress like characters from “The Paper Chase.” Prepared citizens can be seen adorning pea coats, gloves, scarves, boots, toques and smug looks of bundled self-satisfaction, often all at the same time! Winter’s totally about the apparel. With that white snow background and dark clothing, everyone looks like unpaid, worse-looking models in a fashion show. People overtly feel a little more confident when dressed with such dignity, which is why it’s important to nail them in the face with a snowball. Not so confident now, are you?
I’ll be honest, whenever I wear my long dark pea coat and black gloves, I always feel like a hit man and have to suppress the urge to murder people. The feeling is even more pronounced when I put on sunglasses. Don’t shake your head. Oh, you’ve never had the urge to strangle someone while wearing black leather gloves? You’ve never thought about shooting a stranger with a silencer as the falling snow covered up your tracks? Fine, I guess we were raised differently.
One of the standard scenes around the city during snow season is people gathering at the top of a steep street and sliding down. Various contraptions are used as sleds, because snow causes everyone to reevaluate every object in their home, like sex does.
I’ve witnessed people on garbage bags, lunch trays, water tubes, baking pans and shopping carts, all while I yelled, “You’re not using that item properly!” Whenever the public gathers to slide down a street, some kid inevitably breaks an arm or something. It always brings people back to the potential danger, though they mostly wonder how long they have to wait before they can slide again (when the ambulance leaves).
Ramps are an integral part of sliding and are usually where such injuries occur. The key to a jump is getting good airtime. “Airtime” refers to the time not spent on the ground. People get plenty of ground and floor time, and find themselves yearning for the air, like Wilbur Wright before them. To accomplish airtime, one must build up plenty of momentum, keep centered and not be fat. No one said it was easy.
The Vanity of Scarves
Without a doubt, the most useless winter clothing accessory is the scarf. You heard me, scarves! They serve so little function, and merely help to make the person feel like a wrapped present. You disagree? You think your thick, bulbous neck really needs extra assistance keeping itself warm? It has various layers of epidermis and cartilage to work with, not to mention all the overpriced hot soup and coffee you’re pouring down your gullet, warming it from the inside.
If you were really interested in warming your neck, you’d have purchased a neck gaiter, but no, you had to have that extra fabric adorning your body like a goddamn graduation sash, didn’t you? Wear a scarf if you want. Just don’t get angry when I run by and cut it off (“Scarf-Cutting Bandit Torments Locals”).
Lastly, I feel it’s necessary to diffuse all the mythology surrounding snowflakes. They’ve had a free ride for too long. People say that snowflakes are beautiful; in reality, it’s all context. Yes, they look nice in the air, but they sure look gross when they land on dog shit. Snowflakes are different, right? Wrong again! Duplicates have been discovered. The fact is that every snowflake has a double, and must fight him to the death. Whoever emerges is allowed to fall from the sky, onto a pile of dog shit.
Follow Mr. Gordon on twitter @chasongordon