My son called from Brooklyn, New York last week to talk about more plans for his fall wedding in Northern Michigan. He was just off the subway heading to play basketball with some members of his future law firm, and knows he can cut me off when he gets there because game time ALWAYS takes precedence.
It was the right in the middle of the weather blitz on the East Coast, so I asked him if they got slammed by the snow. His casual reply was “Nah, we only got about a foot. Boston got hit pretty good, though.” I inquired about the temperature, as he was walking, and he said “I dunno…in the teens.” He was much more responsive telling me details of the game later!
Now there are a couple of things at play here. As maybe you can tell, Mark is a bit understated. He keeps life on a pretty even keel. Once in college he had a Friday Night Lights coach that wanted him to treat baseball like the Super Bowl every time he pitched, which is tough to do when you pitch every five days. He said “I just feel stupid if I kick the dirt or pound my glove every time I throw a bad pitch or give up a hit. You always taught me not to show emotion on the mound.”
I must admit, I was so flabbergasted by his admission that he listened and applied something I said that I had nothing more for him!
He is going to be a heck of a lawyer, as mock courts, grades and the amount of job offers will attest to. Small amount of proud papa there. But I wonder if the weather reaction is a regional and generational thing too.
Growing up where the idea of a good time is to go out in 10 degree weather, jump on a machine that goes 90 miles-per-hour and ride around for 150 miles gives you a slightly different perspective, certainly. Snow days required, well, snow.
Not that this latest foray into winter here has been easy. Certainly the icy roads were a pain. But you have to love the irony of a snow make-up day where it didn’t snow, being abbreviated the night before because of a snow prediction that didn’t happen till after school was over! And if that sentence sounds confusing to read you should have tried to figure it out to write it.
So the nationwide weather ratings game factors in too because it drops to the local level. I know the weather has to be the lead story when it is coming, but don’t you think the weather guys would really prefer to do their live shots outside with at least a little bit falling as they announce how bad it is going to be? Makes me laugh as they are sweating while saying schools are going to be closing and buy milk, bread and batteries.
And before the local weather guys send me notes, I know about the Masters Degrees and the schooling and the prep work that go into it. But I did work the Weekend Sports Desk in Milwaukee a couple years where the last thing our weather guy did before our group shot to open at 6 and 11 was look out the window!
Which brings us back to the generational factor. Farmer’s Almanac aside, maybe us older people just have more time to talk about the weather. I’m finding myself more and more a part of the guys who not only need to have the latest, but will say “no, it’s not a low of 24; Channel 428 said 26 in their Weather on the :28’s.” And then another old timer like me chimes in with “yeah but Channell 342 said 28 in their Weather on the :42’s.”
Again, I’m confused. Maybe the young people are better off with their “in the teens” comments.
You know I can’t leave without a baseball story or two. In Chicago at the “new” Comiskey Park my Tiger broadcast partner insisted on feeling what the players felt so he opened the windows on one fine April day. I simply said “Cecil Fielder looks like the Pillsbury Dough Boy (which he kind of did in shorts and a t-shirt anyway) and I can tell you they are cold too so shut the darn window!!”
It was also a little funny when Mike Hargrove pulled a hamstring playing on a frozen Astroturf field in Toronto because they told us it was warming up at the airport. The Indians were playing the Blue Jays by Lake Ontario, not the airport!
Anyway, it’s time to throw another log on the fire. Might be time for hot chocolate, too. Gonna be forty today, so I’m not shoveling!