I got burned by an Englishman yesterday.
Not physically burned, as in, he spilled his scalding hot tea on my arm while reaching for a crumpet. (By the way, I’ve never met a stereotype I didn’t fully embrace.) Instead, I refer to the definition in Urban Dictionary:
A usually sarcastic and insulting comment, devised to burn someone’s emotions.
What happened was, our Creative Director at work—the one who made me cut my beautiful words—called me over to his desk. “Could you pad this article?” he asked. “It needs to be a little longer.”
“Wow, this is a change of pace!” I replied. “You’re asking me to add words instead of cut them!”
“That’s right,” he said, and without missing a beat, delivered the barb. “You didn’t write this one.”
Oh, snap! The thing is, he’s not wrong. I do tend to be wordy. Others might call me long-winded, but I prefer to think of myself as simply being an overachiever. Why describe something in six words, for instance, when 18 would paint a much more detailed and compelling picture?
Irony alert: I’m a writer and editor. That latter task requires trimming down copy to eliminate redundancy and more succinctly fit in the confines of a particular space. I’m good at it, too…except when it comes to my own work apparently.
Being a writer AND an editor is a conflict of interest!
This morning, I shoveled snow for the fifth time in 10 days. The annoying thing is, it’s just been a little bit of snow every time, usually an inch or two. Not enough to drag out the snowblower, which we have yet to use. It mostly melts in a day or two, because we’ve been yo-yoing between, say, 18º one day and 47º the next.
If it’s going to snow, Tara and I both think it should really snow. Go ahead, Mother Nature: impress us! Not that I’m complaining. Even a dusting of snow covers up the barren ground and makes everything look beautifully pristine.
The weird thing about Rapid City is, our “snowy season” is really March and April. 42 percent of our snowfall occurs during those two months.
In Portland, if you reached late February without seeing snow (as they have this year), then winter is essentially over. Spring is in full swing by March. Out here, we can forget about planting that garden of ours until May at the earliest.
As fond as I am of the winter months, I do long for mild summer evenings spent on the patio, something meaty sizzling on the grill, a glass of wine in hand.
It’s just great to live someplace where I can equally appreciate all four seasons.