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We live in an area of the country where the weather can be a sore subject. One might assume most people like the unseasonably warm, sunny days. Yet, there doesn’t seem to be anything about this year’s version of winter that doesn’t stir up the conversation. On the surface, it appears to be a neutral conversation starter, but like black ice, it wreaks havoc.
Weather has long been a conversation leveler and if one wants to divert the subject and avoid controversy, one turns to defusing topics such as temperature, amount of precipitation and other boring details of everyday life. It is a topic everyone knows something about so usually most people can move on to calmer discourse once they have broached the weather. It must be listed somewhere as the number one conversational topic between friends, family and acquaintances.
Some folks like the unseasonably warm weather, others like no-fuss, no-muss precipitation (or in other words rain and sleet that doesn’t turn into the piles and piles of snow built up on a layer of ice). Then there are those among us who don’t want to get everyone’s hopes up. Yet, there is something about being constant watchers of weather that makes people anxious.
The winter welcome wagon gets into a verbal snowball fight with the winter/spring contingent. Questions with no answers are pelted into the air.
“Don’t you know that we need the moisture?”
“How many of those old predictable 20-below days do you really enjoy?”
“Do you want the hills to turn brown before they green up and we have to fight fires?”
No matter. The past week has brought a smattering of snow here and there. But unless you want to start a fight, don’t mention the weather.
“Nice day, isn’t it?” are fighting words.