Facing reality on very cold days

The art of life is to know how to enjoy a little and to endure very much.


– William Hazlitt

After going out to get the paper the other morning and returning to the kitchen with complaints about the cold, my bride advised me to 

quit whining and put on a hat.

Or something.

I went to the closet, fished around for a few minutes and found just the thing – a black-knit ski mask.

It’s the old-fashioned kind that has round eye holes and one bigger opening for a mouth.

I put it on immediately and scampered into the bathroom to see what I looked like in the mirror.

I found myself staring at a frightening-looking holdup robber. Or maybe an international terrorist.

“What do you think?” I asked, showing it to my wife.

She looked up from the editorial page, slightly rolled her eyes and said, “Don’t go to the bank today.”


COLD FORECAST: But I did go to the grocery (without the mask) where I ran into multitalented TV and radio weatherman/sports anchorman Steve Smith.

“Who predicted this?” I said, holding my arms outstretched in the very cold air.

“I think I did,” he answered.

I think so, too. Still, I hold out hope for spring.

It will be here before you know it. As my grandfather used to say, we’ve never skipped one.


YOUTH VS. AGE: AARP magazine reports the results of a poll that shows the differences between young people and old people. Some examples:

Space aliens: Only 14 percent of those of us over than 50 believe in them. Twenty-seven percent of people 18-34 do.

Ghosts: Thirty-three percent of young people believe in spooks. Only 18 percent over 50 do.

Astrology: Nineteen percent of the young people believe the stars affect our fates. Only 10 percent over 50 do.

Bigfoot: About 22 percent of those who are 18 to 29 think there’s a huge, hairy creature living in the Pacific Northwest. Only 12 percent over 65 do.

Heaven: Sixty-eight percent of those over 50 believe. Among 35- to 49-year-olds, the percentage drops to 56.

(They’ll learn.)


TODAY’S JOKE: With all of the severe weather we have been having this winter, the Department of Transportation issued a travel warning.

It suggested anyone traveling in icy conditions should have: Shovel, blankets or sleeping bag; extra clothing, including coats, hats and gloves; 24 hours worth of food; de-icer; rock salt; flashlight and spare batteries; road flares or reflective triangles; empty gas can and jumper cables.

I looked like a fool on the bus this morning.