Everywhere I go I find a pal
Peter Weinschenk, Editor, The Record-Review
Yes, there is snow and cold, but it doesn’t quite feel like winter.
That’s because there aren’t enough snowmen.
Driving around, I see plenty of replicas of snowmen, but not the real ones.
I am not sure what is going on.
Are snowmen going extinct? Have children given up on making them?
I hate the thought.
The snowman is a world citizen. He lives in dozens of colder countries, including Germany, Sweden and Britain.
The snowman is the simplest creature to understand. You take snow, a moldable (if temporary) building material. You build a human replica.
It is the most natural thing for a person to do.
I am not fussy about my snowmen. I don’t insist on a carrot nose or charcoal eyes or a top hat (who has one of those?) or a big, fluffy scarf around the neck.
No, I will take the most minimal snowman. Just three stacked clumps of snow. Maybe a stick stuck in its head.
I am fine with snowmen that aren’t men. There can be snow ladies. Or snow animals. Or snow aliens. Or snow zombies.
What bothers me is that there are wonderfully creative young people who could make marvelous snow people for all of us to enjoy but keep all of this talent private within their interactions with computers and various other devices.
They should just try building a snowman. And, perhaps, their parents could encourage them. I know this goes against the current. You don’t score points when you build a snowman. You don’t wear uniforms. You are not on a team. It’s not a competition.
Building a snowman is pointless fun. That’s its beauty, its wonder.
Maybe kids and adults aren’t building snowmen because to do so is free and, as such, it doesn’t signal wealth and privilege. It only says fun. And that doesn’t cut it in our current world.
And maybe snowmen are not being built because there is no technology you can buy to make construction of the snowman quick, efficient and labor-free. A snowman is work. Again, that doesn’t make it in today’s society. We look down on work.
And, I suppose, snowmen aren’t being built because they are not imported. You can’t order a snowman from Amazon Prime and have the UPS guy set up the snowman in your front lawn. No, you can’t buy a snowman. You make it yourself with your own two hands (appropriately clothed in mittens).
Let this be, then, a little nudge for those of you who were thinking about building a snowman but decided against it.
I say go for it. It’s a great family project. It’s a great way to get rid of old, floppy carrots. And it is a beautiful way to transform your front yard from tundra to fun.
Winter is cookies and hot chocolate. Winter is gloves and snow boots. Winter is wool socks and scarves. Winter is a log fire and ear muffs.
Winter is a chicken in every pot. And a snowman in every front yard.