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Quiz: Are You a Cold Weather Contrarian?
Better to face the truth now and stop minimizing the suffering of others.

S/he refuses to buy an air conditioner. S/he does her taxes by paper. S/he says the generic spaghetti sauce is better and doesn’t own an Apple product. Who? Why, it’s the Contrarian, the same person who goes jogging when it’s five degrees, Fahrenheit, swimming when it’s 45 and never takes a front-row parking space (because some people need it more than s/he). Also, s/he uses gender-nonspecific pronouns.

Annoying as that may be, sociologists agree that the Cold Weather Denier is the most widely loathed of all the Contrarians, followed by the Birthday Deniers (those jerks who don’t inform their friends of upcoming or current-day birthdays) and sociologists. Take our nine-point quiz to find out if this serious epidemic affects you or someone you love.

1-Your new puppy walks around in the snow, picks up its feet and stares at you. You:

a-Wish for the 1,000th time that you’d gotten Princess spayed instead of buying new snow tires for your bike.

b-Huddle against the exhaust from the dryer, where your workout clothes are dry but tumbling to make them toasty warm.

c-Gently remind him to “do his business.” This usually works, but sometimes he thinks his business is eating rabbit droppings.

d-Make a snow angel.

2-While playing a party game, you have 30 seconds to name ten places that are warmer than where you live, otherwise you have to take a shot of tequila. You:

a-Flub. Alcohol is the only thing getting you through this nightmare of a “season.”

b-Name the states where all of your children moved after graduating from college PLUS those where your friends from college moved after graduating from college. This should be more than enough.

c-Have had too much tequila already. Better think fast.

d-Probably anyone else’s house because we don’t turn the heat on until February.

3-Speaking of heat, how would you describe the system by which you choose to turn it on every year?

a-Common sense.

b-A financial consideration.

c-Friends stop letting me sleep over in their apartments with central air.

d-A game.

4-Complete the sentence. It’s cold if:

a-The AAA responder refuses to take off his gloves to attach the jumper cables.

b-The new puppy stands too long in one place and gets stuck to the ground.

c-Even the guy on the radio sounds cold.

d-Theoretical physicists appear in one’s backyard and begin to conduct experiments on the Kelvin scale.

5-Short answer. Write a short paragraph explaining why winter is your favorite season and why winter DRIVING is not only bearable, it’s “your favorite.” Alternately, leave this section blank.

6-The best sleeping weather is:

a-With the TV on and tuned to a rerun of “Golden Girls.”

b-The warm, steamy conditions created in the bathroom by a hot bath.

c-When the wind carries with it the scent of possibility.

d-Ernest Shackleton’s pup tent.

7-True or False. School should be cancelled if the temperature falls below 10 degrees Fahrenheit.

a-True. They can always go to school during the summer.

b-True. I home school, anyway, and we go to school all year round.

c-Maybe. Only if the parents need help at home shoveling or detaching the new puppy’s feet from where they’ve frozen to the ground.

d-True. How else will children learn to swing an ice ax.

8-The man next door likes to run outside after it snows and have snowball fights with his kids while wearing only shorts and no shoes. He does this very quickly and runs back inside. Your spouse notices and calls you over to get your opinion on the man’s sanity, sense of decency, whatever. You:

a-Shield your eyes.

b-Run a hot, hot bath and paper train the new puppy, who seems to enjoy the added convenience, anyway.

c-Act bemused but generally unimpressed. You saw this guy building a snow fort a couple weeks ago, and it was pretty lame.

d-Dust off the Slip ‘n’ Slide.

9-It’s currently 20 below zero, not including wind chill. Do you factor in the wind chill when you tell your aunt over the phone how cold it is? (She lives in North Carolina.)

a-Absolutely. The wind makes everything so much less bearable.

b-Absolutely. If it wasn’t for the wind, you could almost stand the winter.

c-Absolutely, but I can’t stay on the phone for long, I’m in the middle of re-decking my roof.

d-There’s no such thing as wind chill, or cold, for that matter. Cold is the absence of entropy, which is the absence of order, which is a meaningless concept, anyway.

SCORE: If you answered “d” to five or more questions, do yourself a favor and jump in a lake.

(images via Shutterstock, snowfall and skeptical man)

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