aka: count your blessings before they’re hatched
I had to work this weekend, and it was a crazy-busy one. Everyone had to stock up on their “holy shit, we’re gonna get 20 inches of snow!!!!” liquor. It was like they’d never seen snow before. Or liquor.
This one guy who’d just moved up here from Florida was bitching about the cold on Saturday. And I do mean bitching. I don’t understand it, personally. I mean, yeah, it was -4 degrees (F) outside, but come on! He was going on about it like it was a surprising thing. Moving to Maine and being surprised about the temperature being -4 is tantamount to moving to Florida and being surprised at seeing a scorpion or three in your backyard. (My mother-in-law spent some time in Florida and loves to regale us with scorpion tales.)
Still, I wanted to cheer the guy up, so I said, “Cheer up!”
“Well, look at the bright side. At least we don’t have any scorpions up here in Maine.”
“I suppose so,” he said, not looking too cheered up.
“Or any tarantulas.”
“That’s right. Tarantulas. Texas is crawling with them.”
“No rattlesnakes up here either.”
He didn’t ask me which region of our great land is infested with rattlesnakes, and I was glad. To be honest, I’m not 100% sure. I just know that in True Grit, a movie I first saw at the age of nine, Mattie fell into a pit of rattlesnakes and it made a big impression on me. By “big impression”, of course, I mean “instilled within me a great and abiding fear of rattlesnakes”, and it’s a source of neverending relief for me that Maine is rattlesnake-free.
“Mosquitoes and snow. That’s what we’ve got,” I concluded, because I could see that he was getting a little tired of my geography lesson.
“And coffee brandy,” he answered, getting back down to business.
Yep. Coffee brandy. Maine’s got plenty of that.