Thursday, October 8, 2009

Frusen Glädjé

I've always liked autumn. There's football, the sound of geese gathering and heading south, hayrides and harvest. I like the bright colors of turning leaves, and the remembered smell of them burning in piles along the side of the street (yes, that's what we did in the days before 45 gallon yard bags). I like brisk. Cold? Not so much.

It's cold this morning. It was 29F overnight, which counts as the first freeze of the fall. There was a rime of frost on the car windshields in the driveway, as well as on the bridge Sally crossed on her ride to work. Tomorrow night's expected low of 20F will put an exclamation point on the change of seasons. None of this is unexpected, nor would it seem ominous if memories of last year's long, white winter weren't so fresh.

Frusen Gladje is a term I have long (mis)appropriated for "cold". I feel better about (mis)appropriating it now that I've looked up and remembered some of its history. It's a Swedish term meaning "frozen delight" or "frozen joy", that was (mis)appropriated by a U.S. ice cream manufacturer to make consumers think they were buying imported ice cream. If corporate America can (mis)appropriate Swedish, I figure it's open season.

So, I guess there's no avoiding the fact that we are entering the season of Frusen Gladje. Crack Spokane weatherman Randy Mann writes that El Nino conditions promise a warmer winter with more rain and less snow. Though not much fun for winter sports enthusiasts, I'd welcome such a winter, even if it made Randy Mann sound prescient.

Truth is, I'm still pretty much Frusen Gladje from last year.


  1. After talking to Scott Pattee today, our NRCS SNOTEL staff person her reported El Nino conditions only imply temperature. Or warmer temperatures. Precipitation probability is independent of El Nino. However all of Scott's forecast information is for a dry winter. So, it may be warmer (after the next couple of months) and dry (relatively speaking)for a winter in Spokane.

  2. I must say that I would put more stock in Scott Pattee than Randy Mann, if for no other purpose than I know Scott has a history of studying snowfall, and has some kind of education aside from cloud reading (akin to crystal ball predictions). Helps that the two of them agree, though...