Winter’s return couldn’t be worse timing for golf coach and son
As we walked out of Wells Fargo Arena the other night, I turned to my friend and said, “Hey, I can live with this.”The temperature was hovering in the low 40s, and let’s be honest here, when you go to a state tournament of any kind and don’t have to fight a snowstorm, you call that a win.Little did I know that Wednesday was just a prelude of some wonderous weather — both here and in Des Moines — that we experienced last week.By Friday afternoon, even diehard wrestling fans wanted to step outside to take a break from the mat action and enjoy a 75-degree day in Iowa’s capital city.Heck, if we wanted to, we could have chosen to partake in our lunch or early supper on the patios that downtown Des Moines restaurants quickly worked to open.But back to Wednesday for a minute.I had ridden down to Des Moines with former New Hampton wrestling coach and current Chickasaw boys golf coach Bill Glenn and his son, Kael, a freshman at Sumner-Fredericksburg.And while Kael and I were excited about the warm weather, Bill curbed his enthusiasm.“Oh, I love it,” he said, “but it’s a little depressing, too, because I’ll start thinking we’re going to have an ‘early’ golf season and the next thing you know, we’ll get a foot of snow.”Fast forward to Sunday afternoon, when my son Noah stopped at the office and sometime during the conversation, he posed a question.“So what’s the weather going to be like this week?”I looked it up and couldn’t help but laugh because it’s going to be almost perfect — sunny skies and highs in the 60s ... until Thursday.That’s the day New Hampton students get out of school early for a three-day weekend because of parent-teacher conferences that are being held at all three of the district’s schools.“Seriously,” Noah asked incredulously?I hate to tell both Noah and Bill this, but as I got the details this morning for the forecast box we put on page 2 for the Tribune, the first thing that caught my eye on the National Weather Service’s website was this headline: “Potential Winter Storm For Thu Night-Fri Night.”So I’m guessing I have both a depressed friend and a depressed son today.“The first day I don’t have school or won’t be at the state wrestling tournament and it’s going to be crappy out,” Noah told me on Sunday. “It’s just not fair.”I tried the “we-live-in-Iowa-and-we-should-expect-this” line, but it went nowhere. Noah continued to whine, and finally I told him I needed to get back to work and he needed to go home.But let’s face it, last week and the beginning part of this week are what make Iowa winters bearable.The winter of 2016-17 hasn’t been a bad one by any means, but it’s still had its share of snow and cold. I always think of these February warmups as Mother Nature’s consolation gift to those of us who live here.Sooner or later, it will warm up for good, and sooner or later, it will be golf season.I, though, am going to do my part for the good of the cause.For years, I’ve tried to jinx approaching storms by writing on social media something on the lines of this: “You heard it here first, this storm’s going to be a dud.”More often than not — way more often, I might add — I must have aroused the ire of Old Man Winter and he hits us hard.So, for Bill Glenn and Noah Fenske, I’m going to write this today: “You heard it here first, this storm’s going to be a weather apocalypse.”Here’s hoping the “reverse jinx” works, but even it doesn’t, we can console ourselves with these two thoughts: We got to enjoy 60s and 70s in February, and the best part of late-winter storms is the snow doesn’t last long ... usually.