Sunday, February 25, 2018

Still Life with Robin: A Little Seasoning

Photo by Cafzal
(via Creative Commons)
by Peggy Robin

We all divide time into seasons, but we use different seasons to follow the arc of the things that interest us. For the sports fan, the year divides into the football season, basketball season, baseball season. It also could include the hockey season and soccer season. You get to decide which seasons are part of your year.

For the fashionista there are the fashion weeks in New York, Milan, Paris, and the unveiling of fall and spring collections (not that I would know anything about the timing of any of those things), and for the movie buff, the year is divided into summer and winter blockbuster seasons, with the major film festivals and awards season taking up time-slots in other parts of the calendar.

For the politically involved, time moves in two- and four-year cycles revolving around presidential and midterm elections, with petition periods and primaries marking the space between.

I’m sure those who follow other hobbies and interests have their seasons, too. It makes it easier to deal with the vagaries of life, to have the year divided into digestible, foreseeable events. And yet, when we think about what the main thing that seasons were designed to track – that is, the changing of the weather from the heat of summer to the cooling of the fall to the frozen air of winter and then the warming in springtime – we have to come to grips with the times when the weather just won’t seem to stick to its appropriate season. And that bring us specifically to this February, when, on three separate occasions here in Washington, we experienced spikes of high temperature, more suited to summer – not springtime! – than mid-to-late winter.

Just take a look at the month of February on this graph (scroll down past January 2018):

I still have not wrapped my head around that 82 degree day that we had on Wednesday, Feb 21. But now that I’ve brought up other types of seasons, I’m thinking we’ve had these kinds of unexpected outcomes before. When the Cubs won the World Series – that was an unanticipated end to a season. Or when the Presidential election cycle ended in 2016 with the election of the current holder of the office – well, think of how few experts believed that was ever going to happen…..

We say that to everything there is a season, but sometimes we just wish it would turn, turn, turn, already!

Still Life with Robin is published on the Cleveland ParkListserv and on All Life Is Local, usually on Saturdays but occasionally on Sundays.    

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