According to freeloading rodents Punxsutawney Phil and Staten Island Chuck, America has six weeks of winter left. And honestly? I'm not sure we're going to make it. It's been so cold for so long that The Shining is starting to look like a documentary. Will this stupid frigid weather ever end?
The AP surveyed the snowbound and learned that we've done all the jigsaw puzzles we can stand. Kids are running low on snow-day activities that don't involve vandalism. And let's face it, you can only watch so many clips of cats and dogs frolicking in the snow, and even Netflix binges begin to pall eventually.
Every day brings some new indignity! Yesterday here in New York, it was wet, disgusting snow to the face. Today, my sidewalk is a skating rink, and I am no Tara Lipinski. Tonight and tomorrow morning, the Northeast is due for still more snow. Why, God? Why?
This has dragged on for weeks. Chicago is basically a Russian novel adapted for film in the key of The Day After Tomorrow—according to CNN, it's snowed every other day for the last 50 days. Midwesterners are getting the full Shackleton expedition experience this winter. It'll be a miracle if the entire region doesn't have rickets by March. Has anyone even thought to check on the Upper Peninsula of Michigan lately? I assume it's just the wastes Beyond the Wall by now. (Game of Thrones jokes are finally losing their appeal, too.)
At least the Midwest is relatively accustomed to soul-crushingly cold weather. Even Southerners—who usually consider anything below 40 a hardship—have done time in below-freezing weather this winter. Thanks to frozen roads in Georgia, my mom spent two nights sleeping at the hospital where she works, and at least she wasn't camped out in the aisle of a CVS.
Even the doomsaying of the wild-eyed adrenaline junkies at the Weather Channel seems perfunctory at this point. You watch the latest forecasts and get the sense they'd give up the office break room for a mild hurricane.
It's just getting weird. Conspiracy theorists are convinced the snow in Atlanta was actually fake, some sort of government plot. The National Weather Service had to take time out of its busy schedule to debunk wild 30-inch snow predictions circulating on social media.
And good luck attempting to escape! America's airports are as chaotic as a table of t-shirts at Old Navy on Black Friday, but at least there's usually a Chili's where you can take shelter. If you get stuck on the Amtrak, you'll be subsisting on peanut M&Ms at best. Oh, and the drought in California has the whole state bracing for wildfires, so that back-up plan is right out.
Yet, those smug snow-forecasting monsters they call meteorologists would have you believe this is all quite normal, nothing to see here, quit being a weakling:
Some records have been broken — Detroit, for example, recorded 39.1 inches of snow in January, a record for the month — but the weather isn't especially unusual, said Alex Sosnowski, senior meteorologist for AccuWeather. He said this winter seems worse because so many recent winters have been mild.
"A lot of people probably are going a little stir crazy," he said. "But if you look at the broad picture, this is probably a once in 10- to 20-year winter. We were probably due for it a little bit."
My feet haven't been warm since October, Alex. Fuck this Jack London short story. Fuck chapped lips, snow boots, long underwear and hat hair. Seriously, just fuck winter.
Photo via Getty