Cabin Fever?

No, it couldn’t be, here in the deep South. Cabin fever happened when one was confined to inside quarters for days, weeks on end.

So far this winter has been colder for longer than I can remember. Major highways iced up, severe wind chill, and at least one more night of this.

Why is it even an issue? Northerners are used to it, shrug it off every day. Here, the houses aren’t designed for extended periods of sub-freezing weather. If temps go under twenty degrees, pipes could freeze.

Snow removal equipment is non-existent.  Businesses and schools are closed.  After tomorrow, things will change for the better.


January Thaw

It’s the time of year when Mother Nature can’t make up her mind. It goes from warm to cold and back again.

That was one of the unpleasant things about living in the Midwest. In late winter, the freeze/thaw cycle. Frozen ground, one day, and the next day, mud. There was nothing beautiful about dirty snow.

Other unpleasant things: Being attacked by pieces of blanket fuzz. Blanket fuzz went straight for the eyes or nose. Which brought up another subject–nicknames.

One of my grade school friends was called “Fuzz” or “Fuzzy.” Did you have a nickname when growing up? Perhaps, an unflattering one, that you’d just as soon forget?

In my town there was “Punk” Dowland, who was short in stature. “Peachy” Leach–the nickname, an obvious play on words. Other nicknames seemed strange without knowing the history behind them, for example “Push” Banks, and “Slats” Rands.

Of course there were those blessed with common nicknames–“Buzz,” “Butch,” “Red,” “Dutch,” “Moose,” “Rabbit.” Who could forget “Hot Rod” Conroy?

I wanted a cool nickname, never had one.  Shortened versions of my given name, like Billy, Bill, Willy, or Will didn’t count.  There were two unflattering ones–“Shaky,” and “Ice Blue.”

To those nicknamed “Skippy” I hold no grudges.  Pardon me, but, I always hated that name.

Snow Birds

Spread your tiny wings and fly away…

And take the snow back with you

Where it came from on that day

And if I could you know that I would

Fly away with you

–Anne Murray–


Every winter

Southward, they flee

From cold and snow

In larger numbers

Than the year before

Checkout lines stretch

From here to eternity

Restaurant reservations

Almost an impossibility

Can’t complain, I’m afraid

A few years back–this

Snow bird came and stayed