First Snow

Southeastern Michigan’s first real snowfall was yesterday and we were not eased into it! It snowed for almost 24 hours straight; I shoveled the drive and sidewalks four times just so that it wouldn’t accumulate too much. I must’ve looked insane but I didn’t have to break my back trying to shovel 2 feet of snow like everyone else.

Unpopular opinion: Winter is great! I love snow and think it looks beautiful draped on pine trees. I don’t think that half the people who claim to hate snow actually hate it, folks just love to bond over their pessimism and complaints. What’s an easier target than driving in the snow? It’s really not that bad. If you live in Michigan you’ve been driving in snow since you learned to drive; if, at the age of thirty-eight, it’s still a problem for them… we’ve got bigger issues with their driving than snowfall.

It’s perfect snowman snow, too. The kind that crunches underfoot and brushes off your windshield in thick slabs. Call me childish, but I’m actually planning on building a snowman after work. There will be photos, of course. I haven’t used my camera in the winter before (obviously since it’s a fairly recent purchase) and am interested to see what I can find. I wish I brought it to work today because the view from my 4th floor window is quite breathtaking. I snapped a shot with my phone but I have to wait until I post this to add it in since I’m writing on my computer… so if you happen to be reading this right as I posted it, give me a few minutes and it’ll be up as the featured image.

Another contributing factor that keeps me from loathing the winter is likely how early I wake up now that I’m sober. I don’t have to rush or panic about snow on my Escape when I have two hours to get to work. I’m fortunate to work fifteen minutes from home so I’m never really in a rush. Fortunate is a funny word, isn’t it? It’s technically just as religious as “blessed”, we just don’t worship Fortune anymore. Hm. I’m blessed to live fifteen minutes from work. Blessed to? Blessed enough to? Anyway, I digress…

My mouth is still full of sores but it’s getting better (“it’s always something with this guy” I can hear you say!) and I think it must have been an allergic reaction to a new energy drink I tried. Maybe it’s all energy drinks, though. Perhaps my mouth is just sensitive to the acidity now. I shouldn’t drink them at all, but it’s hard to get through the day when I’m always tired regardless of how much sleep I’ve gotten or how healthy my breakfast and lunch are.

Lunch today is pretty healthy, too. Can’t say the same for breakfast (Pizzeria Pretzel Combos and a Diet Coke) but lunch is a whitefish stew I made with fennel, tomatoes (ouch on the mouth sores), red onion, and garlic. Delish, to be sure. My nutrition class is motivating me to think more about what my meals are composed of. Just eating vegetables with every meal isn’t enough, we have to make sure we’re eating a wide variety of them. A wide variety of meats and other things, too, for that matter. Pork is apparently the healthiest (go figure) with fish a close second. Beef liver is very high in B vitamins but overall beef is not great for you. Chicken is average. In every way, really. Average taste, average nutrient content!

I’m feeling good today and I think part of it is forced. We can decide to be happy if we’re in the right frame of mind for it. Today the stars aligned and allowed me to push myself to get over my anxiety and melancholy and believe that I’m happy. Whether or not that lasts beyond my first coworker getting in to the office is yet to be seen.

How We See the World

I’ve been reading “12 Rules for Life” at a very slow pace recently, one section at a time so I can really ponder and digest it. By section, I mean the few paragraphs that come after a heading, not a chapter. I don’t know what that’s called, officially. Anyway, yesterday I was reading about how our brains have to break the world apart into objects. We never truly see the world as it is, only how we were raised to see it.

For example, I see a car as a vehicle for getting me from point A to point B quickly, not as a complex system of machines and metal forged by at least a hundred different people, not to mention the ancestral line of engineers that led to the modern technology in my particular car. We can’t see the world this way, we’d go insane. There’s just too much information.

Think about it: every single thing that happens in your day is the result of an almost infinite (may as well be infinite for how complicated it is) web of other events, people, things, etc. Suppose you just want to buy a gallon of milk! You have to walk on pavement that was put there by somebody, made from materials that somebody else made. Yet another person had to decide that pavement needed to go there because even more people decided that where you are at should be a city or town. We’ve barely even gotten out your front door (and don’t get me started on doors)!

I think that part of success in life is understanding that how we see things isn’t necessarily how they truly are. We also have to take into consideration how other people view things when we’re speaking to them. I may see broccoli as a superfood and essential to every meal and the person I’m discussing dietary choices with sees it as poison-flavored bark.

I’d like to try to look at the big picture more often. Not too much, because as I said it can drive us insane, but in situations that seem like they’re important. Even here on WordPress, my followers and the people I follow are a diverse group of people with different beliefs, cultures, and personalities. It’s truly a miracle that we don’t all verbally tear each other to pieces over every single word we say.