The Buttercups Say Spring is Coming

barry currin, stories of a world gone mad, beaverdamusa.comNever fear. Spring will come again.

I know this to be true because the buttercups in the front yard have sprouted. It is the most welcome sight I think I’ve ever seen.

Buttercups are the first natural sign of spring’s return. Sure, seed catalogs in the mail and swimsuits at Target happen earlier, but they are man-made. The buttercups are the real deal, and they didn’t sprout a moment too soon this year.

I’ve been cold since Thanksgiving. That’s never happened before, probably because I don’t think it’s ever been this cold for so long before.

Even the few breaks from the brutal cold we have had were either too short or too wet to do very much good.

It may just be me, but I think it’s also been windier than usual. I don’t even understand why we have that thing called the wind chill factor. If you ask me, when it feels like minus 6, it’s minus 6, period.

Our poor heat pump has run around the clock for weeks. I wept when I paid the utility bill yesterday. If you work for TVA, your job is safe. You’re welcome.

Of course, part of the problem with the utility bill was our water usage. Back on one of those minus 6 days our neighbor called to tell us our outside faucet on the front was spewing water.

I don’t know how long this had been going on, but I do know it had been long enough to form this big abstract ice sculpture which encased a couple of shrubs and part of the house.

The only thing that made it less devastating was the fact that it was so unusual to look at, I almost hated to see it melt.

I’m not sure how it melted. I guess it got up to 32.1 one day.

After Punxsutawney Phil’s dire prediction on groundhog day, I was afraid someone was going to assassinate him out of sheer frustration. I would never do that — I don’t think — but I would love to knock the smug look off of that guy’s face in the top hat who holds Phil up in the air after he predicts six more weeks of misery.

I’ll bet he owns Punxsutawney Heating and Air.

And now we have the flu epidemic to deal with.

I’m not sure a mustard gas attack would be much worse.

The cars in the parking lots at the walk-in clinics are stacked on top of each other, and the horror stories from the flu’s victims make me shiver.

I’ve taken so much vitamin C, I’m afraid one morning I’m going to wake up looking like Carmen Miranda in full regalia.

The other day I had to pick up something at the pharmacy, and I paid cash because I didn’t want to touch the keypad to enter my PIN. The whole time I was in there, I avoided the aisles with people on them like I was playing a big human version of Pac Man.

We passed around hand sanitizer at church Sunday morning. That’s a first.

Schools have been closed so much, they’ve all but used up their allotted snow days. Volunteers armed with bleach have gone in and sanitized all the surfaces.

It’s been a rough winter so far. We’re cold, we’re sick and we’re tired. 

Thank goodness the buttercups give us hope.

About Barry Currin

Barry tries to be funny and poignant, and he's usually satisfied when he succeeds with one or the other. (Being both is awesome. And sometimes that happens.) Email him:

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