Everywhere I go I find a pal
Peter Weinschenk, Editor, The Record-Review
I went to the dedication event on Sunday for a new Marathon Area Elementary School addition. I had a nice time. I even got a cookie (oatmeal raisin) at the reception afterwards.
The school project includes some new, spacious classrooms plus a cafeteria that doubles as a physical education space for younger children. The addition is attractive and well constructed. The cafeteria features large panels of windows to let in natural light.
My only quibble with the project is that the walls and floors in the addition are gray.
Is this any color for a school?
Teachers and school officials at the dedication thought yes. They said gray was stylish, modern and fashionable, especially with accents of red and black.
I am no interior designer. I don’t know what colors are best for children in a learning environment. I am a style illiterate.
Yet, I think gray is gloomy, somber.
Of course, on reflection, gray might be the perfect color for a school.
We think of a school as teaching facts, things that are black and white.
But these days, we live in a world where people cannot agree on the facts.
We poke around in the fog trying to discern the true from the false.
Maybe gray is the color of our Modern Age.
I have been enjoying cross country skiing.
We’ve had some lovely snow-covered days with temperatures in the high twenties. It’s nothing but fun to swish-swishswish on the cross country ski trail during this relatively balmy weather.
This week, of course, we are getting some colder weather.
That’s when everybody’s rules set in.
It turns out that everybody has a number. That number is when people refuse to go skiing because it is too cold.
You’d think that people might stop skiing just based on a feeling that day. But no. People are definite about their number.
A friend of my mine said his number is 15 degrees. Skiing is fine at temperatures above that. He will retreat from the ski trails at lower temperatures. He just won’t go. That’s his rule.
I think some people might want to reconsider their number. Another friend of mine said her number is 25 degrees. I think that’s much too high. There is a lot of great skiing that can be done with temperatures in the teens.
My number is five degrees for skate skiing with no number for classical skiing. Skate skiing on a bitterly cold day is like traversing sand paper. Sooner or later you lose feeling in your fingers. Your moustache becomes encrusted with ice. You start to question your sanity.
People handle the cold differently. They will all have individual numbers. And that’s just the way it is.
My advice is, whatever your number, find a way to enjoy winter, whether you put snowshoes, skies or just hiking boots on your feet.
The best way to beat winter is to have fun with it.