Wednesday, January 23, 2013

My Crackpot Theories about the Cold

Earlier this month, I left New York for a week and visited my parents in California. It was 27 degrees while I was there, and in the mid 40s in NYC. At the time, I felt cheated! How dare it be colder in California than in New York? Clearly, the universe was being unfair to me in a very specific, temperature-based way!

Well, now I'm back in New York. My semester started this week, and we've been having truly mortifyingly cold weather for it, with highs in the low 20s and lows in the mid teens. I am very thankful  for the functional heat in my building, and on the commuter trains. Waking up to 27 degrees now seems like a fond hope rather than a cheat.

And I think it's possible my mind is slightly addled* from the cold? I have certainly been developing a lot** of THEORIES about it.

  • Crackpot theory the first: The "half your age plus seven" rule for dating age also applies to temperatures to be tolerated at different ages. The rule states that the cut-off for dating someone younger than oneself (and not being creepy about it) is half one's age plus seven. I propose that as a general rule, half one's age plus seven is also the minimum temperature one will be willing to tolerate on a regular basis.

    My boyfriend points out that this would certainly explain why so many elderly people move to Florida, but that babies are not particularly well suited to surviving extreme cold. To which I say, babies should not be dating. Basically, once one version of the rule is in effect, I think they both are.
  • Crackpot theory the second: Wearing horizontal stripes feels warmer than wearing vertical stripes. Trust me. Try it. 

* Sorry, students. 
** two. 


  1. I accept theory two and have been wearing horizontal striped knee socks in accordance

  2. I think some really straightforward proofs by contradiction can turn these theories into Laws.

  3. Ali, I like the way you think!