Trying hard to fool myself


I am holding on for dear life.

This is something I have a hard time letting go of, and it seems to be getting worse every year. The calendar might be moving to fall and winter, but I am stuck in summer mode.

Yes, the mornings are getting cooler – some last week were downright cold. But I still got up, took a shower and put on my shorts. That’s right, shorts. My wife might look at me like I am crazy, but in my head, it is August.

The squirrels are all over the yard, finding all sorts of good stuff to store for the coming winter. The leaves are falling and I am cleaning out the gutters with alarming regularity.

But I still go out and mow my yard – with my yard-mowing shorts on.

I haven’t even moved to the traditional shorts/hoodie combo yet this year. And to be honest, a few of these evenings and mornings recently have called for that outfit. But I am stubbornly holding out. OK, some might say stupidly, and I might not disagree.

My concern is that once I start acknowledging these changes are taking place, I will have to accept the fact that the days will soon last about 10 minutes, it will be cold, and the snow and ice won’t be far behind.

Along with all of that bone-chilling cold weather.

Look, I enjoy living in this part of the country. Summers can be fantastic. In fact, this summer would have been perfect – not too hot, very little rain – if COVID-19 hadn’t kept us inside and away from other people so much.

A great way for me to judge this was by the miles I put on my motorcycle over the spring and summer and into the fall. I am always over 10,000 and sometimes closer to 12,000 or 13,000. This year, with all the great weather, I will struggle to hit 8,000. Why? Well, no place to go, really. Everything was closed for ages.

But even with the summer of the virus fading in the rearview, I still don’t want the summer to end. (I know it has already technically ended, but still).

So I have devised a plan. First, I have decided that while inside, I am now a 24-hour shorts guy. All shorts, all the time. I am also going to purchase some high-powered lights – possibly theatrical stage lighting – so that I can fool myself into believing it is warm and sunny all the time.

I am also printing out my favorite warm weather scenes – a day at the beach, a hike in the desert, a slog through the jungle – and putting them on the insides of all of the windows in our house. So, when I open the curtains this winter, I will be surrounded by warm weather scenes.

I am also thinking about releasing rattlesnakes and scorpions in the house to simulate living in my home state of Arizona.

And for those of you who are wonder, no, I haven’t told my wife of any of my plans just yet.

Crazy? Maybe I am. But this year is going to be different. This year I am not going to get the winter blues. This year I am not going to let the long, cold winter get me down.

This winter I will keep plenty warm and lose weight at the same time. How? Well, running around trying to dodge scorpions and rattlesnakes will certainly keep me active.