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Dear Mr. Keillor: Your Minnesota

January 7, 2004 |

Dear Mr. Keillor:

Your Minnesota weather seems to have leaked a little too far south. I live near one of Texas' forgotten seaports, and we can't quite cope with this weather. I've cranked the heater in the swimming pool all the way up, but the wind hitting my wet hair just ruins a good swim. It's thrown the daily routine totally out of whack. How do ya'll endure? No wonder folks from up north seem to always be in a hurry. If they slow down, they'll freeze solid and someone will mistake them for a street performer.

—Michelle


Dear Michelle,

I was in Houston on Saturday and Sunday, walking around carrying a topcoat, no scarf or hat, in 70ish weather, and did not detect any suffering in my vicinity. There seemed to be a lot of coping going on. Everybody was doing fine. If the water feels cold, try rubbing Vaseline petroleum jelly all over your body. Really slather it on thick. I believe Gertrude Ederle did this when she swam the English Channel. Maybe you have your thermostat turned too high. If it's 76 in the house and the pool is 64, then the contrast is bound to be jarring. Or you could move to Costa Rica for the winter and come back to Texas for the summer. These are all the suggestions I have at this time. Thank you for sharing your pain.

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