Aren’t you cold in Chicago?

If you knew me in college, when I lived in the land of ice and snow, you would have heard me complain about the weather. And how I was cold all the time.

Boston, 1975

And you would have heard me say (many, many times) that, when I graduated, I was going to move to a place where it didn’t snow and I would never, ever, ever come back north.

And I did so, living in Houston for many years, and enjoying Houston weather.

Yet here I am, living more or less happily in Chicago. How could this be? There are some reasons.

  • The northern winters are not as bad here as they used to be. Taken together, the string of winters ’77, ’78, and ’79 were the coldest and snowiest string this part of the country had seen in decades. Thanks to global warming, that record will likely stand for the next two or three hundred thousand years.
  • Winter wear is now available in tall sizes. When I was in college, this was not so. One certainly could not get boots in size 15; they just weren’t made. I trudged through the snow in Converse All-Stars: canvas basketball shoes with a thin rubber sole.
  • I don’t wear glasses outside anymore. So they aren’t fogged up all the time.
  • For now at least, it’s perfectly all right to wear a mask. A mask on your face can make it feel ten to fifteen degrees warmer. Of course, that doesn’t work if you wear glasses.
  • I’m retired. If it’s too damn cold or snowy, I just don’t go out.
  • My wife didn’t like hot weather anymore and wanted to move north.

However, I am still cold all the time.

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