Surviving Winter

Surviving Winter


It’s winter again. Well, almost winter, but let’s just call it what it feels like. Cold, wet, soggy, snowy, icy. If you’re new to Chicago, coming from far and wide for graduate school like I did, you might want a few pointers on how to survive the next five months (yes, you read that right—it won’t get warm again until April or May, probably).

Buy an adult onesie. I’m not even kidding, these are the greatest things you could possibly own for the winter.

Stock up on Emergen-C or Airborne. I take them like candy when I start to feel sick or if I know I’ll be travelling somewhere far. My southern immune system can’t handle the temperature, and while many say that cold weather causing illness is an old wife’s tale, I don’t believe their lies. My momma would never lie to me.

Have a humidifier running in your room. Most people live in older buildings in Chicago, and these are notorious for being dry in the winter. You’ll wake up with what feel like daggers are in your nose because it is so dry and there is no moisture in them. You’ll thank me for this tip. Also, make sure to clean it properly on a regular basis.

Hand cream will save your hands. Buy some. I was known amongst my cohort as the dude with the most delicious smelling hands because I don’t mess around with dry hands. Shea butter all the way, baby!

Similarly, you want to have all of the chap stick, ever, in your bag. I recommend the egg-shaped ones.

Candles. They make it less sad in your room when you get Seasonal Affective Disorder. (See what I did there? See my joke?) It’ll make

Boots are an investment. Get a nice pair. I like ones with Vibram soles because they don’t slip on the ice. Note that they will get kind of gross from the salt that is put down on the sidewalks. It’s cool. You can clean them some, but eventually, they just get stained. Rock it.

Wrap-around earmuffs will keep your hair looking flawless and your ears warm. However, if you don’t care (like me), I prefer the ski-mask style hat.

A big, strong umbrella will save your hair. (Again, you have to care about that. I don’t. Maybe that’s why I’m team single-and-ready-to-mingle.)

Keep an emergency bottle of wine for the return of Snowmageddon, Chiberia, or whatever the cool kids will call it. I prefer red. I also prefer scotch, so maybe have that handy.

Netflix, Hulu Plus, HBOGo will all be your best friends. I plan to binge watch the crap out of some Battlestar Galactica and Gilmore Girls.

And if you make plans with friends, meet them out. Don’t be the jerk that only invites someone over so that you don’t have to travel. That’s just mean.

When in doubt, think of the beach.

That’s it. Anything else you can add, MarginAliens? I can always add to this list!