A Geezer’s Notebook, By Jim Foster
I realize this will be an inconvenience to anyone under the age of 75 but I am afraid I have to change Canada’s weather system, at least the business of how we report the temperature. I have tried to adjust my mental thermometer to Celsius but have failed miserably.
I don’t have too many more years left, thirty or forty at best, and cannot waste any more time trying to decide whether 20C requires me to haul out my parka and snow-boots or whether my string Bikini will suffice. And I am not alone; the major cause of heat rashes, hissy fits, and hyperventilation in Canada is bewildered seniors wandering the streets in July bundled up for a February blizzard.
It wasn’t my idea for us to switch to such an asinine system as Celsius when Fahrenheit measurements have been completely satisfactory since Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit, a Polish physicist, invented them in 1724. His work was based somewhat loosely on an earlier scale designed by his friend, Ole Rømer. Ole’s system had to be discarded when it was discovered that most typewriters at the time didn’t have an ‘o’ with a stroke through it. Why anyone would want to discard the Fahrenheit system is a mystery. It worked well for 241 years and for reasons I can’t even begin to understand the flipping British changed it and under the terms of the Magna Carta we meekly went along with it.
Now the last thing I would ever do is give the Americans credit for anything that requires common sense but in this case I must. They didn’t change with the rest of us dough-heads and now the Fahrenheit system is only used by the citizens of the U.S., the Cayman Islands, Liberia, and me.
I’m sure young people are quite content using the Celsius system and will not support my initiative to revert back. But let’s be honest, do you really care what some jerk who wears the ass of his pants between his knees or his girlfriend with a ring drilled through her nose and tattoos on her bum thinks, if they think at all?
The decision to switch in the first place was not well-planned and you will note that no politician is bragging about being responsible for such a dumb decision. They all claim to have taken a sick day when it was passed. No one realized at the time, or even considered the fact, that the finest chefs graduating from McDonalds University today are American-trained and do not understand the Celsius system; which helps to explain why a Canadian Big Mac has ice crystals in the patty and the bun is soggy.
It is sheer hell at our house. By the time Mary calculates and converts the temperature instructions for our Whirlpool oven the dinner guests have either gone home or have passed out in the living room. It has happened so often we don’t even buy food, we just stock up on wine and the guests go home hungry. It is no problem really since they know this will happen and always eat before they come.
The weights and measurement systems I don’t understand either but at least I don’t freeze to death trying to figure out how tall I am. I used to be 5’6”. (actually I lied. I added a half inch) There is no formula in the world that can convert feet and inches to centimeters. From what I have been able to calculate I am two bushels and a peck tall and weigh just under a kilopascal. I mentioned that to my physician and she has ordered a psychiatric assessment, so I may be taller.
The problem is of course, there seems to be no legal way for us to force the government to scrap the idiotic edict that got us in this mess. At first I thought we could get the truck bozos to stick flags all over their Rams and F150s and head to Ottawa on a given day, but I understand that was tried a while back and most are in jail or should be. So that is out. I thought about a cross-Canada protest walk by the nation’s seniors but for reasons I don’t understand, their response has been lukewarm at best. Not only that, my picture with a big X across it is on the front door of every seniors and nursing home in Canada.