What Everyone (Besides Floridians) Know About The Winter

Being from Florida, I have never lived anywhere where the weather, like.. changed. Florida is pretty constant: for at least 10 out of the 12 months figure you’re going to be in the 80’s, and it may dip to the 50’s around 2am on some mornings but don’t worry because by the afternoon you’re going to be sweating your eyebrows off and regretting your black long sleeved shirt. There are rare exceptions to this, but generally speaking Florida stays true to it’s hot and sweaty reputation.

I was sitting with my mother one day before moving up to Tennessee and I was googling “average monthly temperatures for memphis, TN”. I can specifically remember saying to her after I saw the first chart, “Oh this isn’t right. This chart must be using Celsius because it says highs in the 20’s.”

Florida cracker, y’all.

Here's me standing in a pittance of snow for the third time in my life and now knowing what to do with myself.
Here’s me standing in a pittance of snow for the third time in my life and not knowing what to do with myself.


(created with the help of a few other Florida born babes who have also recently embarked on a wintery wonderland adventure)

  • What the “defrost” button does. And why it is in fact called defrost and not defog.
  • What even in the world “sleet” is.
  • The iPhone weather app ACTUALLY has little snowflake pictures and not just bright suns and thunderstorms.
  • In that app, a picture of a thermometer with a little snowflake next to it means “below freezing temperature”. Which means below 32º. I know this only because I had to google it. I recall learning once in school what the freezing point was on the Fahrenheit scale was, BUT YEAH RIGHT LIKE I NEEDED TO REMEMBER THAT LIVING IN THE LAND OF T-SHIRTS AND SHORTS.
  • Work out pants don’t do jack squat in terms of keeping you warm. Seriously like, I am unable to even – you may as well wear nothing.
  • Gloves are useless for opening doors.
  • Gloves are useless for texting.
  • But wear gloves even though you can’t open anything or text because those ten little phalanges freeze the quickest.
  • Besides your nose, which will fall off  at any moment.
  • Being from Florida, ladies, you’re in the habit of shaving your legs weekly but you may as well throw your razors to the curb because your skin won’t see daylight for months.
  • “Wintry Mix” is literally a meteorological term used on forecasts. It sounds like a delicious winter themed style of chex-mix, but it actually means you’re going to be miserable.
  • “Ice Pellets” and “Hail” aren’t the same thing. Apparently.
  • All those cute little tissue paper scarves that you buy at Forever 21 don’t count for anything.
  • Northerns get their thrills by telling you that whatever temperature it is, it’s nothing compared to what they’re used to. There’s a lot of one-upping when it comes to cold. Just.. ignore them and put on your ear warmers.
  • That said, it actually is annoying to hear people in Florida talk about being cold. Turns out.. 50 degrees isn’t all that cold. So maybe no more whining.
  • Target, up here, sells something called an “ice scraper”. And people actually need them.
  • If you don’t have an ice scraper, CD cases also work for scratching sheets of ice off your windows as you sob because it’s so cold.
  • The reason cold mornings seem charming in Florida is because they happen like, five times. In places that aren’t Florida.. it’s months of cold. Months. It looses it’s charm quick.
  • Unless you live somewhere where people aren’t babies about snow, quadruple your expected travel time. No matter where you are going. You won’t be driving over 45 mph.
  • Driving on ice is literally the most terrifying thing in life. You’ll constantly be chanting “steer into the skid, steer into the skid..” just in case.
  • But the hardest lesson to learn is that snow, the beautiful mystical magical snow that every Floridian child dreams of,  is only pretty when it first falls and then as soon as it gets walked in it turns into nasty wet slippery dirty poop ice.

Screen Shot 2014-02-08 at 11.14.36 AM

No one tells Floridians about the poop ice. Actually, maybe they do. To be honest, when someone starts a sentence with “Well, snow isn’t THAT great…” we stop listening.


4 thoughts on “What Everyone (Besides Floridians) Know About The Winter

  1. My San Francisco wardrobe with cashmere sweaters, fleece jackets, wool slacks, boots, socks, gloves, hats, and beautiful hand-knitted scarves – and that is our Summer Wardrobe- are all in the far recesses of my FL closet – and now I wear capris, T-shirts, and a ton of sunblock. Didn’t get the memo re: pythons, hurricanes, bugs and perpetual sunshine. Who knew Florida could be so…unique? Enjoy the cool climes – no more snowbirds – you’ve got snowflakes!

    1. Florida certainly has some adjusting to of its own ;). But with Florida comes the pleasure of shopping at Publix and that is worth all the hurricanes and fire ants and third degree sunburns

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