Change in the Weather

One of the things Nate is rigid about is the change in seasons and how they apply to his wardrobe. When the first day of summer comes, Nate piles all of his long pants and stacks them on a stool in the upstairs hallway, where they remain for months. In his mind, summer means heat. there’s no discussing it really. It’s June, spring is over, and it’s time for shorts. Same happens in reverse for the first day of fall: shorts out, pants in. Which brings us to today.

It’s 59 degrees in Cooperstown today, pouring rain and all around cold and miserable. Even Nate knows that it isn’t shorts weather, but he can’t break himself out of his habit.

“Nate,” Karen suggested mildly, “maybe you should think about dressing for the weather, instead of the seasons.”

“Aaargh!, but I don’t want to!” Nate unmildly responded. Still, Karen brought down a pair of pants for him, with unfounded optimism that he might come to his senses. I’m reminded of a freezing early summer day when Nate was little. He came with me to a Cubs game at Wrigley Field, and not only was it chilly, but my seats were in the shade that time of year. I told Nate, a Nate that was much harder to reach back then, that it would be cold and he should wear pants. He pitched a fit and held his ground. Fine.

At the game, he was a shivering mess, huddling close to me. My father, who was there too, said I should buy a Cubs blanket, a $75 item or some similarly obscene price, to keep Nate warm. Screw that! I thought. I warned him, he refused, and now he’s paying the price. How else would he learn?

The answer is he hasn’t. Off he went, just now, in a gray Santa Monica T-shirt and blue, gray, black and white plaid shorts. Shockingly, he’s got on a windbreaker. Progress after all.

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About Jeff Katz

Jeff Katz is Mayor of Cooperstown, the “Birthplace of Baseball” and home to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. His latest book, Split Season:1981 - Fernandomania, the Bronx Zoo, and the Strike that Saved Baseball, (Thomas Dunne Books, 2015), received national attention, with coverage appearing in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Sporting News and NPR’s Only a Game, among others. Katz appeared on ESPN’s Olbermann and The Sporting Life with Jeremy Schaap and MLB Network’s MLB Now, with Brian Kenny. Split Season: 1981 was a finalist for the 2016 Casey Award for Best Baseball Book of the Year.
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