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Column: For one weekend, winter won

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opinion Farmington, 55024
Farmington Independent
651-463-7730 customer support
Farmington Minnesota P.O. Box 192 / 312 Oak St. 55024

Were they interested in such things -- and I honestly can't imagine why they would be -- historians might record last weekend as the precise point when this seemingly never-ending winter finally broke my spirit. As the time I finally threw up my arms (metaphorically) and shut myself inside my house and away from the gloomy weather for two straight days (mostly literally).

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It didn't seem like things would work out quite that way when the weekend started. I had a good time Thursday night at a fundraiser for the Dakota County Technical College Foundation. I had an even better time Friday at a dinner to celebrate a couple of birthdays. There were margaritas involved, which certainly helped.

I even had plans for the weekend. They mostly boiled down to "do stuff," but if you know me, that's practically an itemized itinerary.

Then, somewhere Saturday morning, things went wrong. Or maybe they went right. I'm still not entirely sure.

In either case, I woke up at a reasonable time. I did the things I usually do on a Saturday morning. But then I just ... kind of ... stopped. Rather than shower and go out into the gray, snow-covered world I stayed in. I watched old episodes of Dr. Who, a series I had managed to avoid until last week. I played video games. I ate a surprising number of peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches. I mean, surprising if you consider four a surprising number. It was more, I would guess, than I had eaten in the entire 12 months prior to last weekend.

I considered going to a bike shop, but that didn't get me off of the couch. Movie? Forget about it. I had time-traveling doctors to watch and pirates to fight and pajamas to wear.

I did actually take a shower and put on real clothes in the early afternoon. In retrospect, that turned out to be an overly optimistic move. I had a comfortable indentation in my couch and no real desire to give it up.

Things started much the same Sunday. I had hoped to go for a bike ride, figuring last week's snow would have had a day to melt and the roads might be clear. I might have planned differently had I actually watched a weather. To this point in 2013 I have ridden my bike approximately 40 miles. Through April 18 last year I had ridden 305 miles.

I think I've started pedaling in my sleep.

I did eventually leave the house Sunday. My period of seclusion ended around 4 p.m., when I went to the gym. I ran three miles on the treadmill while watching a documentary about Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat. I'm not a big fan of the treadmill, but I kind of enjoy watching TV with subtitles, with all of its inaccuracies and misheard words. It's how I learned a few months ago about the controversy over what the closed-captioner reported was NBA star LeBron James' pre-game "dunkaroo teen."

I suspect the issue was actually the dunk contests James and his teammates held before a couple of games earlier this year -- their dunk routine -- but I like to imagine people were up in arms because the world's best basketball player had brought in a high-jumping Australian high schooler to get the crowd fired up before games.

I left the house a second time Sunday to get dinner. I had a cheeseburger and fries, which, now that I think about it, kind of cancels out the trip to the gym. So, it's basically like I never left the house at all.

I'm still confident winter will end eventually. The snow will melt and the temperatures will warm. The sun might even come out once or twice.

I suspect I will continue to venture out into the world. I will interact with its people.

For one weekend, though, I'd had enough.

Historians take note.

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Nathan Hansen
Nathan Hansen has been a reporter and editor with the Farmington Independent and the Rosemount Town Pages since 1997. He is very tall.
(651) 460-6606
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