Incidental Amusements

If you were in the Northeast during spring break, you’re probably well aware of the aptly-timed wave of perfect weather that took over the region for the whole week. The warm weather hung around Geneseo for a while but we’ve since withdrawn into western New York normality.

Even if you managed to stay cooped up inside throughout all of this, it’s likely that your Facebook friends took it upon themselves to update your news feed with the fruit of their amateur dabblings in meteorology (i.e., going outside and being more sentient than a dirt clump).

You all know these indignant Facebook weather reports I’m talking about. They’re taking the old-fashioned modes of reporting by storm, making them look a tad weathered, if you will. In this new age, you no longer need to wait eight minutes to see the area’s current conditions. You can simply wait for a friend’s rarely clever (but always melodramatic) take on how poorly the forecasted weather patterns align with his day’s plans or how presummer heat is surely a sign of the apocalypse or how he would suddenly be down with global warming if only it meant steady mid-70s in March, etc.

These posts are quick shots of mild entertainment – a staple of the distracted college student’s diet – but they’re also stabs in the back to Mother Nature. That’s right, Mother Nature has Internet access and probably like your own mother, she’s snooping on your Facebook – the hotbed for our generation’s unbridled derision for all things dislikable – and she’s not happy with what she’s seeing.

You might have to don your tinfoil hats to buy this but I think Facebook and Mother Nature are conspiring against us. Facebook relies on Mother Nature to keep us indoors and online, and Mother Nature relies on Facebook to get the latest on what we ungrateful brats think of her. Maybe George Orwell was just a few decades and a family relation away from being a true visionary – BIG MOTHER IS WATCHING YOU.

There is, however, a glimmer of hope: April Fools’ Day! Maybe this colder weather is just a lighthearted prank from our loving Mother. After all, if she can figure out the Internet, it isn’t hard to believe she could pull an April Fools’ prank. Unlike our friends, however, she isn’t just looking for a laugh at our expense; there’s a moral to her trick.

She wants us to leave the weather-talk to the “professionals” – those poor guys and gals who would probably be better off pleading “April Fools!” when their forecasts finally meet their enigmatic cousin, Actuality, lest they look like fools themselves when their “hot-and-sunny day” turns out to be a torrential downpour of suck.

But really, Mother has a point. Talking about the weather epitomizes the lifeless banality of small talk – the most trivial, surface-level interactions among people. It’s as mundane as, well, watching the weather channel, and it draws us back into the very stale apathy and dreariness from which uncharacteristically warm weather swoops in to rescue us. We need to realize that nice weather isn’t owed to us. Like a high school lunch line, you get whatever’s being served. If you don’t like it, at least you can play in it.

So there’s no use complaining. Laugh at your misfortunes. Relish your disgust of relish. Assuming you survived your friend’s April Fools’ Day pranks, there will come a day when you’re lucky enough to be dished up a succulent gourmet platter, a glorious sun-drenched day. Make sure you bask in it. Soak it all up. Make Mama proud.