News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

The Holden Arboretum

Hennes Paynter Communications

Knight Foundation


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Ohio


Winter: Ohio's imperfect thread
The longest day of summer is the time to value the balance that comes with winter
by WKSU's PAUL GASTON


Commentator
Paul Gaston
 
Winter in Ohio needs to be treasured during summer in Ohio.
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:

For Northeast Ohio, summer is just beginning. But WKSU commentator Paul Gaston points us in another direction.

Gaston on the balance of Northeast Ohio

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (4:01)


            If you are among the seasonally savvy who celebrate the turn towards spring at the winter solstice, you may be aware that today turns us in a different direction. To be precise, at seven-oh-nine this evening the angle of the earth with respect to the sun will begin to grow wider.

And when that happens, winter will no longer be a distant memory of the past. It will once again lie ahead of us. It becomes inevitable.

            No, it’s not time to exchange our flip-flops for snow boots. Won’t be anytime soon. Thankfully. You can’t do much better than summer in Northeast Ohio. Long days. Cool evenings. But because we are so comfortable, midsummer offers the ideal opportunity to reach a balanced perspective on winter. If you’re shoveling snow or picking yourself up off the ice, you’re hardly in a philosophical mood. But on a calm summer evening? Why not?

The real winter's in store
           So, ignoring the warning about being careful what you wish for, I’m hoping we’ll get a real winter next go round. One with enough snow. Enough that we actually have to shovel it. A couple of nights when the thermometer flirts with zero. Cold deep enough and constant enough to freeze the ponds and skating rinks.  Perhaps a few snow days at the schools.

            It would be ungrateful not to smile at the memory of our mild winter last time around. Cities saved money on salt. Orthopedic surgeons probably saw fewer slip-and-fall victims. We all saved some money on heating costs. It was easier to get around. What’s not to like about that? Not much.

A thread of humility
 And yet. I think of the Middle Eastern weavers who deliberately introduce in their otherwise perfect rugs a less than perfect thread. That deliberate flaw draws attention to the excellence of the rug otherwise. It also reflects a pious admission that only God can achieve perfection.

          What does this have to do with Northeast Ohio? I imagine a kind of balance sheet. On the left side are the Cleveland Orchestra, our many minor league baseball teams, the Metroparks, the Towpath Trail, world-class hospitals, vintage wine growers, superlative art museums, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame, brewers and brewpubs, a Great Lake and some other pretty great lakes. It’s a long list.

On the other side of the ledger there’s a single entry: winter. And my tag line is, “You do the math.”

            And that’s how I think of winter in these parts. As one liability to offset a long list of assets. As the imperfect thread in an otherwise remarkable carpet. As a reminder that because Northeast Ohio can be a great place to live anytime, we can put up with a challenge for a few months each year. A bumper sticker I saw the other day puts it this way for Cleveland: “You’ve got to be tough!” Well, nothing wrong with that.

Forget I said that 
            So this evening, while you are enjoying a cool lemonade swinging in your hammock under the buckeye tree, brace yourself for that ever so subtle shift, more a nudge than a lurch, as we begin the leisurely drift towards winter. Perhaps a real winter, this time.

            One final word. If we do get a real winter, one with slippery roads and steep heating bills and shortages of salt and cracked pipes and snow too deep for easy shoveling, please forget you ever heard this commentary.

Listener Comments:

Well said. I really enjoyed (and agreed with) this commentary.


Posted by: Frank Buck (Kirtland) on June 21, 2012 3:06AM
Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Pluto: The Browns split from Manziel is long overdue
Get Brock Osweiler from the Denver Broncos! He's fantastic and seems like a great person.

Democratic Senate hopeful P.G. Sittenfeld pushes for local gun control
That makes no sense at all... why not let cities determine driving codes as well? Maybe Cincy want's folks to drive on the left side of the road. What could go ...

Exploradio: Autism in the workplace
I would love to get more information re: Autism on The Town and other such programs in Northeast Ohio. Thanks!!

Human trafficking cases rise in Ohio
It is about time this is presented to proceed with a plan of prevention..to protect our youth.And very necessary to inform communities through school, churches ...

Fermented food company aims to preserve Cleveland's farm-to-table movement
This is terrific! I make my own sauerkraut and consider it vital to good health. Well done, I wish you all success.

Ohio doctors get new guidelines for prescribing certain painkillers
I would gladly smoke pot to get off pain killers but its not legal.It would save the hassle of doctor visits for pill counts,pee tests,blood tests,driving to pi...

Ohio unemployment cuts are nearing a Statehouse vote
What about those that are laid off seasonally? My husband has been employed by the same company for 26 years and has been laid off (for the last 17) mid-Januar...

Ban on microbeads is a big step in fighting plastic pollution
What a bunch of liberal "so open minded their brains fell out" tree huggin yuppies. Professing to be wise they became fools.

Who's on -- and left off -- Ohio's medical marijuana task force?
Biggest joke everm these people are evil they know marijuana is harmless they rigged the polls last nov everypne kmows it

Dayton 'Black Lives Matter' protesters to appear in court today
Police to fast with the trigger finger and not the brain.A lot of police officers out here judge by color first instead of accessing the situation first. If a p...

Copyright © 2016 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University