Being my friend is hard. I will likely get you kicked out of bars, in fights with your girlfriend, and occasionally in trouble with the law. I can count on one hand the amount of times I have even attempted to be a wingman, and the last time my friends told me it was my turn to be the designated driver, I immediately pounded five shots in protest. However, despite all the shit being my friend entails, one thing I am not is flaky.
Unless it’s cold outside. There is a very clear correlation between the temperature outside and what my chances are of bailing on plans. Let me map it out.
While most people (especially in the Midwest) bitch about the heat, I am not one of them. I’ll take a 90-degree day over a 40-degree day ten times out of ten. Unless our plans are for something both outdoors and boring, I will never bail on them. Pool party? Fuck yes. Rooftop bar? I’m still recovering from my last sunburn, but sure. Hell, I’ll hike, kayak, even play beach volleyball with you as long as you remind me to put on sunscreen every once in a while. And if our plans take place in an air-conditioned room, that sounds fantastic too. I love the sun, I love my friends, and I love not bailing on things.
This is the sweet spot. If you ask me to go your cousin’s roommate’s kid’s first birthday party while it’s 76 degrees out, I’ll go without hesitation. I would rather do things outdoors while the weather is this nice, but I would have no hesitation checking out a museum with you, or even going to the movie theater. Classic friendship. I love it.
Damn, things are cooling off a little bit. I mean, I still wouldn’t bail on our plans, but I am going to have to pack a light jacket just in case. Chicago is very unpredictable during these temperatures, and I’m a Cali boy who’s still getting used to seasons. I’d prefer to do something indoors, but I guess I could be talked into some outdoor fun as well. I’m always down for a bar, of course. You want to go bowling? Sounds great, I got the first pitcher. A baseball game, you say? I guess I can handle that, I’ll bring a jacket and a flask. The beach? Hard pass. Ya boy doesn’t get in water when it’s under 70 degrees. Call me a wimp all you want, I’m not catching pneumonia because you think a balmy 55-degree day is “beach weather.”
90% of outdoor activities are out. I don’t care if you’re from Wisconsin and you consider 36 degrees to be “brisk,” I’m not going somewhere without central heat and preferably alcohol. This is also my threshold for plans I don’t really want to attend. I know, I said I’d love to do a double date with you and your boyfriend who “doesn’t get sports,” but it was ten degrees warmer when I said that. Yes, I know we’ll be indoors, but the bus next to my house is always late, and that’s, like, five minutes in the cold, you know? Fine, I’ll sack up and come, but I’m pregaming beforehand to warm up. God, I’m a good friend.
I don’t care if we made these plans months ago and are financially invested, if they’re outdoors, I will not be attending. I may respond to your texts and calls with just a screen shot of my weather app, or I may not respond at all. You should have known better than to schedule group paintball in November. To be honest, even indoor plans are in jeopardy. It’s not that I don’t want to go to your house to pregame before going to the same three bars that we always go to, it’s that that now includes five instances of me standing outside, freezing my balls off, and waiting for the bus/Uber. You’re going to have to really sell me on the plan when it will probably involve me getting a flurry of ice down the back of my jacket at some point. Yes, when I was single, even the possibility of meeting girls would have me strapping on my winter boots, but nowadays, I’m much more content watching Friends reruns and cuddling when it’s frosty outside.
I’ve bailed on my “plan” of going to work because of these temperatures. You think I’m going to leave the house to “watch the Hawks game and play beer pong?” You’re out of your mind. I’ve been checking the Southwest website every few hours for flights to Florida in between crying and asking myself why I ever moved here. If you try and call me and don’t get a response, it’s probably because I’m on the phone with my dad, angrily yelling at him for selling the Puerto Vallarta house before I even got a chance to visit. Your best bet in these circumstances is to get a case of beer and come to my apartment. I still want to see my friends; I just refuse to go outside.
Fuck your plans and fuck you. Fuck Chicago. Fuck the winter. I would bail on a family member’s funeral if it were this cold out. Hell, I would bail on my own funeral once it’s in the negatives. You’d try and lift the casket, and I would rise like a zombie, bitching at you that “there’s no way you’re burying me in the cold-ass ground when it’s -18 degrees outside,” and that “Y’all better put me down right now and cremate me so I’ll at least be warm for once.” There is nothing on God’s earth that would make me leave the house in this temperature unless, of course, the Patriots have playoff game. .