McAllister: Honey, it’s warm outside: shorts in winter are pointless


This seems to happen every year. There’s some weird warm air in January or February, and someone ends up going for a run, a walk, or a barbecue outside in shorts. And we don’t think anything of it because, when it gets to 48 degrees in the dead of winter, that’s what we Ohioans do.

It’s a heatwave and there’s a good chance we’ll also open a window in our house to air out a little.

But rewind just a few months to early fall when the temperature drops to the same 48 degrees. Sweaters come out of hiding, we don scarves and hats, and someone warms their hands with a mint latte while discussing that all-important decision about when to turn on the oven for the first time.

So why does 48 degrees look so different from 48 degrees? I think if you asked your favorite scientist or weather forecaster, they would say it has to do with humidity, wind speed and temperature. I’m sure this is all true and probably accurate, but I think it all boils down to the fact that we love our seasons. every one of them. We like to be warm, and we like to be cold. We love how we feel when our legs are exposed to fresh air and when they are smothered in our flannel pajamas.



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Our seasons in Ohio aren’t very long, but they sure feel like it. Summer starts out great, but then come the hot, humid days and mosquitoes, and we can’t wait for the first freeze.

Fall is great for that week when the leaves are bright and the sun is shining, but the rest of it is just getting ready for the holiday season. =

Spring blooms and then comes the countdown to summer

Winter gives us a cozy atmosphere to curl up and sip hot chocolate, but then we start counting the days until spring. Then we get excited to see the first crocus blooming, but the rain makes us feel depressed and count down the days until summer.

It’s a beautiful episode but it’s really evil.

So when something breaks that cycle and reminds us of the good times in other seasons, we jump on it because we ride that beautiful and wicked loop like good Ohioans and celebrate our weird weather all year long.

(Note: Wearing shorts in the winter when the temperatures rise is not for some people, like my old neighbor who prefers to cook meat outdoors in shorts whether it’s 48, 18, or -37. Grill, man!)

Reach Carrie McAllister at

This article originally appeared in The Daily Record: Even with warm temperatures, shorts in winter don’t make sense

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