It does not take long to realize that people constantly complain about the weather. The old ladies in the library, the supermarket cashiers, it’s like the only innocuous small talk anyone can muster is eternally tied to how hot or cold it is outside, and it plays on loop all year long. I distinctly remember asking my mom why people willingly have the same conversation over and over again.
The weather forecasters are the most frustrating, though. It’s always about when “we’re going to see an end to this cold weather,” or when “we can expect a break from this heat.” I was flipping through my Google Reader when I saw a headline that asked, “Nashvillians, are you sick of snow?” You’d think we’d been buried for the past month.
Granted, this is more snow in a shorter amount of time than I’ve seen in most of the 17 years I’ve lived in Nashville, but wow. It’s either we have the lowest tolerance for weather in the country, or we have nothing better to whine about.
I’m pretty sure there are topics out there more worthy of complaints — not just limp “Nashvillians don’t know how to drive in rain” complaints, but complaints of a more creative and impassioned variety.
It’s always entertaining when friends from the North giggle at how quickly folks from the South shut down the city and raid Kroger for every last loaf of bread and jug of milk. I think they think we’re cute. Or stupid. But the important thing to remember is that winter is directly succeeded by tornado season, and that is something we deal with rather well down here.
The past few years have been milder than I remember them being in middle school and high school. Then the entire house would be lit up by lightning strikes, and we’d be huddled in our “interior room,” aka the downstairs bathroom, fairly certain the roof was going to get blown off the house. We would complain that there was a tornado warning from 1 a.m. to 3:30 a.m. and we still had to take that blasted math test.
I figure I’ve yet to be blown away in a twister, so unless the sky is that sickly, creepy shade of green I’ve only seen twice in my life, I carry on.
Maybe we complain about the weather so much because it’s one of a handful of things you can grouse and whine about without fear of repercussions. When someone says “If I never see another raindrop again,” the rain will not come after them. Maybe it’s a power thing. I can shake my fist at the sky all I want. Then what?
Admittedly, I can think of a few times this summer where I had to walk to my internship in a torrential downpour that started halfway there — if there had been somebody to fight, I would have. Nothing screams professionalism like showing up at the office in a puddle.
In any case, the local weather gurus say we’re not quite finished with the snow. I say there’s not much anyone can do about that. Get ready for more conversations with folks channeling their inner almanac. It’s weather. It’ll be here all year.
Erin Carson, editor, is a senior journalism major in the honors program.