I had just gotten home from work yesterday afternoon when I discovered a patch of grass near the front door — a patch that, horror of horrors, needed mowing. Can it be that this nasty winter is actually gone for good?

It is perhaps foolish for me to come up with a snap self-diagnosis of Seasonal Affective Disorder, but after forty-odd winters, not one of which has left me with favorable memories, I'm beginning to wonder if maybe winter and I are simply mutually incompatible, and if moving to San Diego might help. (There are California cities I like better, but they tend to be less climactically delightful; Mark Twain once opined that the coldest winter he ever spent was a summer in San Francisco, which, coming from a chap from northeastern Missouri, is a truly scary statement.)

Still, it is March, and that means spring is, technically at least, not far away. But, almanacs, calendars and Punxsutawney Phil notwithstanding, there's only one benchmark that makes any sense to me — the day I dismount the snow tires and go back to regular, nonstudded rubber. I am penciling in this event for the 15th; let us hope the Ides work out better for me than for Caesar.

The Vent

#43
2 March 1997

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