Tag Archives: Memories

Shorts Day

27 Feb

It wasn’t nearly as warm as we thought. My sister and I were home while my mother grocery shopped. This of course meant I was supposed to be watching her. I don’t remember how old I was, but I remember that “watch your sister” at that age meant either “play with your sister” or “torment your sister with limited exposure to consequence.” Luckily for her, this was a play day, and we played.

I have never liked winter, and it was no different back then. I must have gone outside for some reason, perhaps to let the dog out. I remember that the grass was that sad soggy yellow-brown that all lawns are after a winter’s snow has melted. The sky was the pale blue gray that promised spring was just about to break through. Everything felt wonderful.

I went inside and headed upstairs. My sister followed me up.

“What are you doing?” She asked me.

“I’m putting on shorts.”


“Cause it’s spring.”

This was all the cue she needed, and she scurried off to her room (a loathing of winter runs in our blood it seems).

When my mom came back later, she found her son and daughter laughing loudly as they swung on in the backyard. I remember we had the most ridiculously happy grins on our faces. Her pony tails were streaming in the air as she giggled, swinging back and forth on that swing. She still has the most infectious smile, and her eyes were bright and twinkling. I kicked my legs, loving the feeling of air on my skin; loving the feeling of spring.

“What are you doing?” My mother asked, bordering on demanded.


“Why are you in shorts?” She was incredulous.

“Cause it’s nice out!”

“Michael it is forty degrees get inside before you catch a cold!”

I didn’t really get in trouble, I think my mother understood what was going on. It was shorts day, that first time in the year when you don’t bother with jeans. It’s a magical moment in the mind of almost everyone I know, even now. There is an irrational exuberance to shorts day. You can walk down almost any street and see everyone with a slight smile on their face, in spite of everything.

It’s never nearly as warm as we think, but that never stops us.