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Monday, Dec. 22, 2014

All we needed was commom sense

Saturday, October 17, 2009

With the weather cooling down, I thought it was a good time to share a previous article:

Do you ever wonder what we did before we had wind chill indexes? As I watch TV and listen to the radio, all the weathermen and weatherwomen seem to be obsessed with giving us the wind chill somewhere in the Great Plains and warning us over and over that we shouldn't go outside. Some of the weathercasters even go so far as to offer us our own wind chill index cards so we can keep track of how awful it is outside.

I grew up in a time before they talked about wind chill indexes. I guess I was deprived, but living on a farm we could figure out when it was getting really cold. We had a reality check about the cold on a regular basis.

We knew we were going to have to go outside every day regardless of the cold because we had chores to done. The cows that needed to be milked had not heard about wind chill either, as they came to the barn every morning and night and didn't take a day off.

When the cattle all drifted to the south fence to avoid the snow and wouldn't look into the wind, we knew it was getting cold.

We learned not to put our tongue on the pump handle when it was cold even if our brother dared us to do it.

When the farm dog wouldn't come out of his doghouse, we knew it was going to be a cold day. No wind chill index needed.

I remember coming home from college one day and going to help dad feed silage. He built the trench silo on the brow of a 200 foot hill facing north. I'm glad there was no wind chill index for me to stew over that day because it was so cold the tears were freezing on my face as I forked the ensilage by hand.

The farmers figured this cold deal out long age without the benefit of a smiley weatherperson on the TV. They used common sense, dressed warmly, and told their family where they were going.

Perhaps we need less chill index and more common sense.

Dick Hedges
Fort Scott Community College