Back to Reality with Mark Twain

March 29, 2012
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It was, we are certain, with great difficulty that most homeowners turned their heat on Saturday and Sunday due to the vastly changed weather situation. It is, forecasters predict, a condition appearing certain to continue for much of the week.

All is not lost but then, everything about the heat we’ve experienced for the past few weeks might be lost after all.

The winter appearing to end before March is over is a continuing perception that most of us are holding near and dear. Grass has turned greener here and there. Early blooming flowers, shrubs and even trees have been fooled much earlier than usual into the coming of spring.

“The Maker who made us all makes everything in New England but the weather,” spoke Mark Twain.

He had that right.

“One of the brightest gems in the New England weather is the dazzling uncertainty of it,” he added. “There is only one thing certain about it, you are certain there is going to be plenty of weather,” he said.

Twain made those statements about the New England weather among many others as part of a speech he gave on Forefather’s Day, December 23, 1876 in New York City at the annual festival of the New England Society held at Delmonico’s Restaurant.

He wowed the crowd with his insights about the New England weather.

He seemed to make sense out of our belief that we’re going to have a spring and summer that stretches sure and warm from April to September – which is a virtual impossibility of the first order.

“The weather is always doing something here; always attending strictly to business; always getting up new designs and trying them on people to see how they will go. But it gets through more business in spring than in any other season,” Twain joked.

“There is a sumptuous variety about the New England weather that compels the strangers’ admiration-and regret…the people of New England are by nature patient and forbearing; but there are some things which they will not stand. Every year they kill a lot of poets for writing about “Beautiful Springs.”

We await the return of what we believe is a certain early spring extremely warm and lasting for April and May.

“I could speak volumes about the inhuman perversity of the New England weather, but I will give but a single specimen. I like to hear rain on a tin roof, so I covered part of my roof with tin, with an eye toward that luxury. Well, sir, do you think it ever rains on the tin? No, sir; skips it every time,” Twain said.

Amen.

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