Thursday, January 5, 2012
Six Little Mittens and One Fat Migraine
It got cold this week. For about ten minutes. In fact, we experienced an incredible temperature variance of nearly 80 degrees, from a high of 67 degrees in the valley on Saturday to a night low of 10 below zero (in the higher elevations) in 24 hours. Once upon a time, I would have dwelt on the wicked vagaries of climate change: January in Asheville used to be reliably, consistently cold-ish, with snowflakes more or less around every day and the occasional blizzard blowing in to liven things up.
This time, I was too busy doing a scramble for Beau's mittens to worry about global doom. Since we don't use them regularly, it's guaranteed they'll be awol when needed. I dumped out his underwear-sock-mitten-random-lost-Lego drawer and came up with no less than six gloves/mittens. Notice I didn't say "pairs." All were singletons -- not a mate in sight.
There's so much that's wrong about this. I'm not sure how we even came to be in the possession of so many mittens when I can count on one glove-less hand the number of times they're necessary during an Asheville winter nowadays. More gravely, the dearth of even one matching pair points a finger -- or rather five fingers -- at my egregious lack of organization.
At such times my mind always darts to my mom friends who are wrangling big broods with better sense than I manage one. I have a dear local friend, R., with four sons, age 13 mos. to six years. Four boys! My sister-in-law, M., a gorgeous superstar of a grande dame who runs a horse farm and five-year-old triplets with equal aplomb, would never wantonly lose her kids' mittens in frostbite temperatures. This is a divine certainty. Finally, and inevitably, there's my friend of longest acquaintance (since third grade), who's got six kids. Math isn't my thing, but I think that if C. lost the number of mittens I have, it would equal about 36. Right? She'd be the first to admit it, though, loyal Viking that she is.
I can dress Beau in mismatched socks and it'd take him a week to realize it. But he'll notice right away if his hands are awry. The best I can do is choose the black glove and the black mitten, a variance undetectable from a few paces back. Up close, it looks sort of cute, like a hoof and a claw. God bless the animals. They never judge.