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Forum: Is Summer Better Than Winter?

Fall Line
posted: 05/18/2000
by Nathaniel Reade

Bruce, Bruce, Bruce. You like summer better, do you? Then you should move to Florida, where you can lie around reading newspapers in the sun until your face resembles an old leather handbag. And take your friends, won't you? Because I'm not sure you deserve winter.

Did you know that kids in all the states along the Canadian border consistently score higher on standardized tests than their more southerly peers? That's because people who know how to handle winter are smarter. It's an evolutionary thing. Any nitwit can sit around in the sun picking oranges off trees and survive. But to make it up north you need to develop complicated, brainy skills¿or you will die. You must learn, for instance, how to put on long underwear and operate a thermostat.

Sounds simple to the average SKI reader, but down south where summer-loving slugs belong, those are lost arts. Why is it that the same half-foot of snow that paralyzes Washington, D.C., doesn't even produce a snow day in Maine? Because Mainers are smarter. They know how to put the key in the ignition of a snowplow, lower the blade and drive it around.

No diversity in winter, you say? No mountain biking, fishing, boating? Get out of the sun, fella, 'cause you've fried what's left of your cerebellum. Throughout wintry mountain towns (every bit as beautiful under a quieting comforter of white), people still manage to bike, fish, ice-boat, snowshoe and skate. For native people and loggers, winter was the time of travel because rivers and lakes had turned into hard, flat highways. Winter brings on more options, if you've got the brain cells to throw on a few extra layers, open a door and go find out.

It's easy to like summer. I like summer, too, as long as there's not too much of it. I even like bug season. But if summer were a woman, she'd be cute and dumb. Winter is sharp and snappy. She'll keep you on your toes. She's got attitude.

Best of all, winter lets us chill out. The days are shorter on purpose: so we can come in from a good ski, sit down beside the fire and read a mind-improving book. Summer, with its heat-stroke and dehydration, makes you stupid. Winter, on the other hand, is the season of genius. "> Check out the summer side of things.

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