Weather talk

This is a purely hypothetical situation. You and your friend walk into a coffee shop. She spots someone she knows so you both walk over. They chat for a minute and then she announces she has to run to the bathroom. You’re left standing there next to this new acquaintance. After the 20 second explanation of how he knows your friend, what do you talk about?

The weather.

Weather is the backup topic. If you run out of everything else to talk about or need a conversation filler enter one of these phrases: “It’s so nice out today!” “Isn’t the sun lovely?”

Or, if you’re from Oregon: “Can you believe this rain?” “I wish the sun would come out!”

Small talk. Obvious. Trivial.

And yet, with a closer look perhaps the weather is rather profound. Some days of life are sunny, happy, joy-filled. Sometimes the sun gets too hot and we get burned, scorched, hurt. Rainy days come with tears, sorrow, and heartbreak. Thunder storms bring fear, anger, awe. Overcast days invite blanket cuddling, loneliness, despair. Snow and ice speak of being numb, cold, playful.

Could it be that when we talk about the weather we are really shrinking away from what is in our own souls? By making light-hearted the moods of the seasons, are we refusing to face the torrent, icy, sunny winds that trespass our hearts?

Could the weather in fact be a reminder to feel, breathe, live?

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