Last week, I chastised Tara for dashing through the rain. We were going out to eat at our favorite local Mexican restaurant, and when we arrived a light drizzle – really, nothing more than a gentle mist – was falling. Tara ran across the parking lot as if being chased by a pack of Republicans carrying “Vote for Romney!” billboards.
“Real Northwesterners don’t run through the rain,” I told her. “We stroll.”
“But my hair was getting wet,” she replied.
“At least you weren’t carrying an umbrella,” I said.
It’s true: with all the rain we get in the Pacific Northwest, we barely let it faze us. We certainly don’t run through it (because we are the superior, dominant species and rain is just lowly drops of water falling from the sky (ha – it can’t even stay in one place! Lame.) that must not wield any power over us), and we never use umbrellas. They’re just not cool. I made reference to this in my handy pocket guide to the PNW, and it remains every bit as true now as it did then. Wet hair is a small price to pay for showing rain who is boss.
Not more than three days later, I found myself running through the parking lot at work in a furious (and futile) attempt to avoid getting drenched, an act that makes me…
A. A hypocrite
B. Not a real Northwesterner, according to my own definition.
In my defense, it was absolutely pouring. And, on top of that, hailing. My friend Mike – a lifelong PNW’er – pointed out that there is a hail clause pertaining to umbrella usage. Even the most hardcore Northwesterner, it turns out, will be excused for protecting his head against chunks of ice dropping like lead weights from the heavens. So, my all-out sprint can be forgiven, after all. Whew! And for what it’s worth, I might as well have just strolled through the downpour anyway, for all the good my mad dash did me. I was soaked and chilled to the bone the rest of the afternoon.
By the way, the umbrella clause wouldn’t do me a bit of good anyway, as I don’t even own an umbrella.
I did tell Tara yesterday, as we were strolling through a parking lot in the rain (a very common theme lately, have you noticed?) that wearing a hood, as we both were at the time, was perfectly acceptable. Hats are fine, too. Just not umbrellas. My California friends think this is the nuttiest thing ever, but to them I have one word: sprouts. Seriously?! They’re like grass clippings. Grass clippings that you willingly ingest with your salad (or did back in the 80s…I don’t know, does anybody still eat sprouts these days?). My point is, we all have our quirks.
So anyway, I think Tara is learning what it takes to blend in with the locals. (The quick answer: wet hair). And just in time, too. The rainy season began with a fury a couple of weeks ago, and has not let up since. Even in our notoriously wet climate, it’s been wetter than usual this month – after the driest three months in Portland history. Go figure.
But enough about rain. Let’s talk belly dancers some more. If you didn’t notice, Melissa – my belly dancing crush who discovered my blog – did, in fact, respond to my last post. Click the back button and see for yourself! This is all so surreal (and quite funny). She’s actually very witty and has a great sense of humor, qualities I admire. AND she can shake her hips like nobody’s business. In her comment she wrote, “The whole troupe loves your blog post.” She went on to add, “You are only writing down what so many other audience members are thinking,” and I suppose that’s true. Go, me – honest to a fault! But hey, I’ll take it. How many guys can say they entertained an entire belly dancing troupe? Never in my wildest dreams, I tell you.
It’s official: I lead a charmed life.
And I’ve got the wet hair to prove it.