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I can sleep when I’m dead.

Yet another week of having no breaks. I am currently typing this on my computer at work, because my personal computer is in an unresponsive coma. Awesome.

I’ve had a lot of fun this week with service events, a couple of new member events with the Sigs, and a bunch of other stuff, but for some reason I want to write a whiny blog. Yep. Whiny. I’m not feelin’ the cheer right now. The grievances I’m airing here have primarily to do with the weather. Anyone in Northeast Ohio (or pretty much any part of the east coast) will understand why I say this. It’s been disgusting.

Now, as a native Clevelander, I am well aware that I have no right to complain. I knew exactly what I was in for when I decided to stay here for school and there were no illusions of a mild, pleasant winter with happy snowfall and cute winter attire. None of that. However, like most Clevelanders, I have become very good at holding onto hope well past the acceptable point of no return. I still believe every year that it won’t be nearly as bad as it was the previous year, and consequently every year winter breaks my spirit a little more.

A good friend of mine lived here, went to Case, graduated, and got the heck out. Since then he’s lived such toasty places and Arizona and California. When he came into town recently I was very defensive about Cleveland, because he’s of the firm belief that I should move to California when this is all over and enjoy the sunshine and rainbows and all that jazz. As much as I don’t want to admit it (and I certainly won’t to his face), some part of me has been secretly thinking that he’s right. California sounds great right about now.

I love Cleveland, don’t get me wrong. There are a lot of reasons that I understand for people wanting to leave, but I’ve always had this pride in my hometown that I could never explain. Something about it makes me happy, regardless of how heartbreaking our baseball team is (I’m not even going to address the Browns, since I really don’t care) or how many houses are boarded up every year. However, now that I have to walk in this weather every single day for at least half an hour, stumbling through slush and muck, practically running into people, and thinking mostly in expletives and some variation of “Why me?”, it’s getting a little tiring.

I don’t want this to be all whine, though, so here are my friendly tips for surviving Cleveland winter. I’m sure some of you will need this:

1. There may be some part of you that wants to look “presentable”, “cool”, or “attractive” when you leave in the morning and consequently will carefully prepare an outfit that looks good even if it’s not practical. Abandon this part of you immediately. Winter in Cleveland for the stubborn becomes a battle between your pretty leather boots and the four-foot mound of slush you end up climbing to cross the street or get to your door. Dress practically, even if that means you look like a giant neon marshmallow.

2. Give yourself plenty of time to get to where you need to be. You will (hopefully) be a total champ at getting to class in under ten minutes by the second semester of your freshman year. I can make it from Storrs to the quad in about that amount of time, without running, if I happen to be late. Seriously, it’s an art form. That period of time does not account for a) people who don’t know how to walk, b) the aforementioned horrible mounds of slush and goo, or c) the horrible morale-breaker that is snow plowing into your face. Make sure to give yourself enough time to get to class without jogging through the snow and slush. That’s like trying to climb a sand dune at a full sprint. It does not end well.

3. Don’t be a jerk. Everyone is as miserable as you. Really, they are. So be nice to people and understand that their walk is probably equally as crappy. It will keep you from going insane.


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