Some Thoughts on the Problem with Umbrellas in Winter

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For those of you who live in a bubble/get to work at home/are visiting some tropical paradise, here’s a newsflash: The weather in New York City today sucks ass. Oh, not in the kind-of-boring-because-it’s-Allison-Williams-and-she-is-the-kind-of-person-who-insists-that-her-ass-smell-like-vanilla-cupcakes way. No, today’s weather sucks ass in the totally exciting way where you have no fucking clue what to wear because you iPhone app promises wildly fluctuating temperatures and a mixture of snow and sleet and rain and probably frogs and definitely locusts. Winter, you guys. It’s the best.

But so, while I can’t really help you determine what kind of shoes you should be wearing (just kidding, everyone should be wearing these LL Bean duck boots, because they are flawless), I can help you when it comes to answering that age old question that every New Yorker asks him- or herself on those crazy days when wet stuff falls out of the sky: Should I bring an umbrella?

So, here’s the thing: The answer to that question is always “no.” You should never bring an umbrella, because they are unwieldy and a menace on already too-crowded sidewalks and it sucks to bring them into wherever it is that you’re going—whether it’s work or a cafe or a friend’s house or what have you—because then you’re bringing in a whole bunch of outdoor bullshit inside and your umbrella will probably break anyway if there’s any sort of wind situation to factor into the equation, which there always is. And you especially shouldn’t bring an umbrella in winter, because snow isn’t rain and can usually be kept off your head if you just wear a hat, which you were probably going to do anyway, because it’s winter out there! But most importantly, perhaps, is the irrefutable fact that you will just lose that umbrella anyway. That’s the nature of the urban umbrella, and you can’t fight nature. Especially not with an umbrella.

But, you know, I understand that some people don’t look good in hats (sorry!) or that they don’t want to wear a hood because it will ruin their hair and so an umbrella is really the only choice unless they want to arrive at their destination looking like a drowned rat. So for all you people who insist upon taking an umbrella with you today, just remember that you are existing in a society, and that you should use that umbrella responsibly, i.e. watch where the fuck you’re going as you plow down the sidewalk. Because the last thing anyone needs on a Monday like this one is to get poked in the eye or have someone else’s umbrella run-off fall down the back of their coats. That’s the fucking worst.

Follow Kristin Iversen on twitter @kmiversen

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