Sunday, March 15, 2009

The Weather of the Irish Melancholy

posted by Mills-McCoin @ 3:28 PM


The weather in Houston has never captured the Irish melancholy more than it has this weekend. My world smells of an Irish Spring bar of soap. It is in fact spring; and I’m a bit Irish- so it’s a familiar smell. But this weekend’s elements are far more intertwined with one another. The atmospheric pressure, the outlook of things, humidity, temperature, precipitation, mood, wind chill- all of them decided to throw a costume party for the Saturday pending a St. Patrick’s Day.

Each of them showed up dressed to the tens. It’s miserable.

Despite it’s dreary disposition and horrific chill, the weekend’s weather has pressed on me the significance of such an Irish melancholy. This mood that we are forced to experience is truly loathsome; but it’s supposed to be. Mother Nature cannot rely on mankind to appreciate other perspectives on its own. We’re a selfish lot of bastards and we want things to be the way... we... want them... to be.

So Mother Nature exercises her power, forcing us to seek bliss in a rather awkward environment.

We can’t fix this weather. It’s impossible. Just can’t do it. We can’t control it. It’s raining-ish all the time. It’s freezing, wet and miserable. But there’s nothing we can do to change it.

Which is GREAT!

It’s great because we are forced to change our personalities for a moment and we’re given a chance to delight in one of Mother Nature’s many splendors. Albeit a rather depressing, morbid, wanna blow your brains out kind of “splendor”. But it’s the introspective feeling behind this wretched weather that warrants the experience.

In all likelihood Ireland is enjoying the exact same weather. But they’re used to it up there. And such weather patterns have molded the culture into something of a society of brave drunks hellbent on ignoring the hand of cards they’ve been dealt in favor of Catholic guilt and Guinness- their most prized invention.

I’ll admit, as well, that my knowledge of the creative and introspective expressions coming out of Ireland are not as many as they should be. I listened to a lot of U2 and Van Morrison growing up. I fancy the work of Samuel Beckett and Oscar Wilde. Beyond that, I’m not familiar. I haven’t taken the time out of my Americana burdened life to go further down that green rabbit hole.

If you’re curious about what the Irish melancholy is, then let me refer you to James P. Carroll’s article in the Boston Globe (September 19, 2005), “Irish Melancholy from New and Old Wounds”. In said article, Carroll explains that the Irish condition stems from a series of mind fucks. Something great would occur (invention of Guinness); and then something horrible would happen (Irish potato famine). I think it’s easy to see how this would cause some long term damage. But back to our situation here in Houston.

Last Sunday, we treated ourselves to an extra hour of sunlight. And in the first full week of that extra hour- the weather has been shit. Soooo... something great occurred (Spring Forward) then something horrible happened (Crap Weather).

This strange meteorological circumstance influenced me enough to finally sit down and write something so unassuming as an essay about how the weather makes me feel. Ah... the power of Mother Nature. Cheers.

What did you do this weekend?

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