Grey clouds, silver linings

Pressure. There’s always pressure. Sometimes, though, it’s worse than others, and those times can be positively painful. I have a list of work projects longer than my arm, and that only includes the important stuff that has to get done, you know, soon. Obviously, that doesn’t include the day-to-day stuff that pops up out of nowhere, the fire drills and minor emergencies, but somehow it’s all got to get done regardless.

In other words, chickens running about without their heads spent much of today watching me flail wildly while clucking amongst themselves about how I needed to get things under control.

On top of that, both the Puddinette and the Attitude have apparently contracted the February Fever, and I don’t mean the kind that compels people to buy the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue so they can daydream about beach and/or bikinis. No, no, I mean the type of fever that results in text messages from my wife that include the phrase, “I think I’m dying.”

I’m considering putting an ibuprofen tap in my house.

So, there’s work out the yang at the office, and my home resembles a medical institution. On top of that, it’s apparently still winter, regardless of my hopes to the contrary. Oh, and my weather widget tells me that I can expect it to be 9 degrees tonight.

Even in the face of all that, I am still feeling pretty positive about things for two very good reasons. First, the Cincinnati Winter Beerfest is this weekend, and your very own Puddin secured his ticket just this very day. So instead of moping around and complaining about, you know, winter (again) this weekend, I’ll be sampling a wide assortment of brews with my friends while simultaneously supporting the Big Joe Duskin Music Education Foundation.

Yes, that’s right, I’ve found a way to drink beer for charity. Let’s see the Puddinette complain now.

As if an honest-to-goodness Beerfest wasn’t enough to keep my spirits buoyed, Mother Nature actually did us a bit of a favor this morning (although I suspect it was inadvertent). She dropped a bit of a dusting on us last night, a wee bit of snow on top of the ice already covering the roads after yesterday’s consistent cold winter rain. I have no doubt that the evil hag cackled to herself imagining parents pulling their hair out while suffering through another cabin-feverish day in captivity with out-of-school children. But this time, things backfired. The dusting was only enough to give the local school board reason to declare an hour delay.

To me, the hour delay is life hitting the snooze button for you. The kids get plenty of morning time to make beds, brush teeth, and enjoy breakfast without having to gulp it like a pig at slop in a race before the school bus beckons. Better still, instead of dragging ourselves out of bed, bleary-eyed, with just enough time to make sure the kids didn’t go to school with hair resembling Albert Einstein or morning breath that could stop a train at 100 paces, the Puddinette and I rolled over and stole an extra 20 minutes of sleep. Hair and breath were still amply attended to.

Am I talking about a winter vacation to someplace in the Caribbean where I could lounge on the beach with an e-reader and a bottomless glass of rum-based beverage while the sun warms me to a flattering crispy pink? No. If that were the case, don’t think for a second I’d be writing a post. But the real trick to surviving the last dark weeks of winter isn’t in the big trip someplace warm, unless you plan on staying there until Easter. Instead, I believe that in order to get through February, you have to focus on the little things.

For me, that means a beer festival and an extra few minutes of sleep.

Then again, I’m about to run up to the drug store for more ibuprofen and it’s cold enough outside to freeze the snot in my nose. Kinda makes you wonder who I’m trying to convince here, huh?


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