O, Phil, How Thou Dost Deceive Me!

Photo © 2010 David Adams CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

This is so not fun.

This morning, when I checked my outdoor digital thermometer, the sight buoyed my spirits. I honestly thought it said 68°F. After all, yesterday the temperature hit 50. Why shouldn’t it get even warmer today? Somehow, first thing in the morning, that made sense. In my morning stupor, I had missed the decimal point, otherwise clearly visible between the tenths digit and the ones digit.

I am so not a morning person.

Last week, I swear I heard Phil promise us an early Spring. I’m convinced he did so to make up for the way the Steelers played on Sunday. But, O Phil, if Spring is to arrive early this year, why does the sun yet rise so late in the morning? Why does the chill yet inflict my toes with frostbite? How come I still have to scrape an inch of frost off the car every damn morning?

I am so not a morning person.

I thought that I just wasn’t sleeping enough. But yesterday, after a meager 5-hour night, I napped all afternoon and accomplished almost no real work. Last night, I slept the entire night through. And this morning, I dragged my still-sleeping body out of bed. And right about now, as I write this, I feel a nap coming on. So my energy level has nothing to do with not getting enough sleep. It has to do with scant hours of daylight and circadian rhythms and those grizzly-bear genes kicking in and telling me it’s time to hibernate.

You know, a part of me has always romanticized living in Alaska. The wide-open tundra. Crystal snow kissed by sunlight. The Aurora Borealis. Northern Exposure. Not anymore: they’d find my frozen body, still snoring in bed.

Even so, I managed to rise early enough this morning, lazed around a little before shooting up with adrenaline, the kind of slow start that kicks off a great day. (Too many mixed football metaphors.)

Then I looked up at the clock, and discovered that I had to walk out the door, like, right now to make sure that my Firstborn got to school on time.

I am so not a morning person. (Did I mention that? I don’t remember.)

Pulled on some jeans, donned a blue button-down shirt, ran a wet comb through my hair, and a wet razor across my face, a quick teeth-brushing, coat, hat, gloves, cellphone, computer, power cable, office-in-a-bag. Did I forget anything? Coffee. Okay, got it. And then raced outside to face that layer of frost stuck to the car.

There was nothing we could do except to wait for the engine to warm up, because the bitter cold was freezing our breath to the inside of the windshield.

We were pushing the wire. I didn’t know whether my Firstborn would get to school on time, or whether we would be late. Until we hit the Route-3 interchange. Stupid drivers. I swear, a glint of blinding morning sunlight in their eyes, and they come to an almost-complete stop. Sheesh! What wimps.

A crappy start to a crappy day.

Two minutes later, I was racing down Route 3, accomplishing maneuvers with my Saturn sedan that I would never admit to a police officer. (Or to an eco-terrorist.)

She made it into the school building just before the door closed.

Unfortunately, emotionally exhausted, that didn’t much lift my spirits.

As I write this, I’ve thrown a Hail Mary, attempting to reclaim the morning. Or more accurately, I’ve thrown out my diet, just for today. Stopping at Panera Bread, I ordered a sausage-egg-and-cheese breakfast panini—from the taste of it, possibly slathered in bacon grease—and a bottomless cup of hazelnut stirred together with a healthy serving of 8% milkfat, all at a remarkably reasonable price. Heaven-sent comfort food enjoyed reclining before a toasty-warm fire. Brings a smile to my weary morning eyes.

Except now I think I’m feeling a little ill in my stomach.