Ask a fifth-year

Evan Williams

Dear Evan,
I’m a freshman from California and I’m worried about surviving Appleton winters. It’s been pretty cold recently – will it get better soon? Or will it suck even worse? Any wise words of wisdom for surviving the cold?

Hi, Califrostation. I’m sorry to tell you that the winter will just suck more, and for a long time. I’m positive that Mother Nature hates Appleton with the fiery passion of a thousand suns – it’s probably revenge for giving the country Joe McCarthy. Not only will it get colder – yes you read that right – but we will also get a lot more snow.
Then, in mid-February, the snow will melt and there will be a few days of warmth, but don’t get used to it: The cold and snow will return with a vengeance and may stay around until the first week or so of March.
Yet, even though you won’t enjoy the snow – and if you do now, don’t worry, that feeling will pass – if you’re smart, you will get through it without losing any limbs to frostbite. In fact, I’d say you’d have to be extremely stupid – excuse me, unwise, – if you get frostbite traveling the distance across campus.
The number one thing to remember is cover up! Ladies, that skirt with no tights or leggings may look sexy, but dried up skin does not. And gentlemen, wearing shorts or no coat may make you feel manly, but if you need to subject your body to unhealthy conditions to prove your masculinity, then I think you should take a hard look at your life.
I knew someone freshman year who took a bet that he could wear shorts every day of winter term. He won the bet and is still alive and well, but if you need to take off items of clothes for money, then this is another moment to question your life and your choices. In short, pants are cool!
Cover up, but here are some “don’ts.” Number one, ski masks. Let’s face it: Wearing a ski mask makes you look like a creep or a criminal. And come on, you’re not skiing and the campus isn’t so large that a scarf and hat won’t protect you for the short amount of time it will take you to get anywhere.
I also wouldn’t suggest wearing long underwear. While it’s cold outside, the academic buildings are often kept at an unbelievably high temperature. So while long underwear keeps you warm for the five minutes that you’re outside, you might be sweating for the 70 minutes you’re inside.
Also, planning your trips across campus is important. I’m sure you’ve already found that once you get to a building, you are reluctant to leave it earlier than necessary. So it sucks to arrive at the Con for a nice long practice sesh and realize that you left a piece of music or something in your Trever dorm room. I like to pack anything and everything that I might need in my book bag and camp out in whatever academic building I need to be in.
Lastly, don’t forget to have fun! Yes, snow sucks, but snowballs are awesome – unless they hit you in the face, and then they suck too. But be careful, because apparently throwing snowballs is illegal in Appleton. But that might just be a rumor.
To conclude, yes, Appleton winters suck, but wearing clothes, coats and some nice boots will get you through it. May the Warmth be with you.