When I was on the cross country ski team at University of Waterloo, we had our own temperature scale. From warmest to coldest, it was

  • Cold
  • Damn Cold
  • God Damned Cold
  • God Damned Fucking Cold
  • Harsh

Back then, because we spent so much time out in the cold and were pretty damn fit, I think “Harsh” was around -40, which is the temperature we experienced for the entire week of our first Christmas Ski Camp. That’s where future Olympic silver medalist and future several time wearer of the Malliot Jaune and Malliot Blanc in the Tour de France, Steve Bauer, showed me how to put a plastic bag down my shorts to prevent a painful frostbite.

These days in my aged and infirm state, “Harsh” is what we have been experiencing the last couple of days. It was 7°F when I drove home tonight, and in the cold today I broke my new snow brush and my very fancy and expensive sunglasses that I bought in Oshkosh last year. Plus my gas mileage is in the pits because the engine has to run to keep the owner warm.