Saturday, January 02, 2010

You can put your arms down when you get back to NC

Another Christmas in New England. Another reminder that my once hardy mountain blood has thinned to water. It was all the way up to 14F, and I couldn't go outside to play without bundling up in the equivalent of two sheep and a yak.

When I started college, transplanting myself from West Virginia to Chapel Hill, NC, fifty five degrees was T Shirt weather. I openly scoffed at the pathetic weaklings who wore hats, jackets, and (giggle) gloves in an environment wherein water remained liquid. I never put on a jacket before going out to play, no matter how many times Mom told me to. (This was back when colds and flu were thought to be caused by low body temperature, before germs were discovered.) Now I'm the one telling my daughter to wear her heavy coat and not blame me if her fingers freeze to the swings. Truly, my hypocrisy knows no bounds*.

The answer, of course, is that kids are exothermic. They generate so much heat with their scurrying, fidgeting, and metabolizing that they light up the infrared frequencies like the Fourth of July. As we mature, our bodies settle down and focus on nourishing and nurturing our brains, magnifying our wisdom. With deep thoughts come certain endothermic tendencies. Yes. I'm sure that's it. My Giant Brain (tm) requires more energy than my body can provide on it's own so I must draw molecular kinetic energy from my environment. I'm not getting colder. I'm getting smarter.

*First Tombstone quote of the year!

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