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I think I’ve been channeling some teenage rebelliousness lately.  I’m not talking about hitting bars, clubs, or hanging out past curfew.  It’s that too-cool-for-common-sense attitude I remember, the little things we used to do just to defy our parents, teachers, and mother nature.

My center-based job is housed in a former church campus, so the center is comprised of 5 different buildings surrounding a parking lot, a set-up I’ve heard someone refer to as a California campus.  In other words, a campus which only makes sense to people living in California.  For those of us in climates which get winter, separate buildings are a major pain in the ass.  I regularly visit three different buildings, keeping the person who buzzes us into them very busy as I jet across the parking lot for the fortieth time of the day.  Sometimes I bother to get bundled up, like when the kiddos are headed outside, or if the heat hasn’t kicked on indoors yet, but frequently I find myself marching across the parking lot without a coat, in stern indifference to the cold.  No matter how lightweight they are making coats these days, no matter how much “bulk” they promise to condense, coats are still a nuisance.  Put my coat on, button up, brave the 50 yards of cold air, then enter another warm building, pull layers off, find a place to stow my coat on an absent child’s coathook, forget where I put it, leave it in the wrong building, etc.  Even as we head into a cold snap that reminds me what winter is all about, even as the, um, wiser coworkers insist in their well practiced mothering tones, “Are you sure you don’t want a coat?” or, passive-aggressively, “Aren’t you cold?” I’m increasingly defying the weather and letting the cold air hit me as best it can.

We had a snow fall last night, enough to cause many suburban school districts to open two hours late as they rushed to clean off buses and plow roads.  I left the house a few minutes early this morning, my school district being obstinately open, in order to clear off my car.  I wore my mock-Uggs (Target, $19.99) which I have defiantly covered with multi-color Sharpie graffiti, so as to keep my grey argyle knee-socks dry while I tromped around the driveway.  As soon as I pulled into my first site this morning, I flung the car seat into its furthest back position, and wrenched those boots off in favor of a pair of decidedly unseasonable ballet flats.  These are shoes so unpractical the snow laughed in my face as I stepped from my car onto the icy road.  But frankly, I don’t care.  I am so sick of bundling up (and it’s only January, folks!)  that I must exert my independence against the confines of practicality and defy the common-sense conventions that are supposed to have taken root by adulthood. 

“Screw you, winter!”  I shout in my head.  “You can’t tell me how to dress!”

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January 2010