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Should we talk about the weather?
February 15, 2014 3:52 PM   Subscribe

Pronbably to no one's surprise, Southern California leads the nation in the number of pleasant days per year (mean temperature between 55° F and 75° F, no precipitation). How does your city stack up?
posted by Horace Rumpole (86 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite

 
Mine is tied with Los Angeles. Because it is Los Angeles. Unfortunately I love rain and detest heat. The ideal day is about 70 degrees and rainy.
posted by Justinian at 3:56 PM on February 15 [2 favorites]


Huh. Apparently the place I live now has about 3x as much "pleasant" weather as anywhere I've ever lived before.

This summer in California, though I'm pretty sure "pleasant days" will mean "everything's on fire"
posted by aubilenon at 3:58 PM on February 15 [8 favorites]


My city is in second place. Always in the shadow of Los Angeles.
posted by birdherder at 4:01 PM on February 15


Yeah, i think pleasant is hard to define and different for most. I traded a high desert (Flagstaff AZ) with harsh winters for the rainy part of Oregon. Not nearly as much sun, but I really prefer the rain to the snow, so overall I am happier with weather here, but a LOT of people don't like the weather in the Willamette valley at all.
posted by bartonlong at 4:14 PM on February 15


I've lived in both California and Montana (the most and the least pleasant according to this map), and I'd take Montana in a heartbeat. In Montana I could afford to live within biking distance of work, in California I had to spent many hours stuck in traffic, lurching ahead 10 feet at time.
posted by 445supermag at 4:18 PM on February 15 [1 favorite]


Ahem.
posted by flod at 4:19 PM on February 15 [8 favorites]


Minneapolis is low on the pleasant scale at 55 days a year, to the surprise of no one.
posted by dinty_moore at 4:19 PM on February 15 [3 favorites]


While old Dan Fahrenheit was actually born here, we keep our temperatures in Celsius these days. But, Fahrenheit or Celsius, there's no telling from that map how many of our days are in the pleasant range each year. I imagine it's better than 3.
posted by pracowity at 4:24 PM on February 15


While old Dan Fahrenheit was actually born here,

This is the beginning of a wonderful nerd-folk song
posted by clockzero at 4:26 PM on February 15 [8 favorites]


It is a pleasant here. 30 F with light snow clinging to any horizontal(ish) surface. Beautiful.

I'm tired of this Southron centric view of things.
posted by batou_ at 4:31 PM on February 15 [5 favorites]


*sigh*

Now I'm even more homesick. Because it's slightly damp (thankfully flood-free), windy, cold, and just generally miserable over here.
posted by Katemonkey at 4:36 PM on February 15


There should be a metric for truly bad days as well - say heat index under 15F or over 95F.
posted by wotsac at 4:37 PM on February 15 [2 favorites]


Yeah, the pleasantness of SoCal has a definite undercurrent of dread to it these days, considering the disaster-level drought we're in. But I fully admit I enjoy being able to wear sandals in January without having to travel to the southern hemisphere.
posted by scody at 4:41 PM on February 15 [2 favorites]


Also, I've been to Douglas, Wyoming. I wouldn't call it the least pleasant place in the country, because I've also been to Chugwater, Wyoming.
posted by scody at 4:42 PM on February 15 [9 favorites]


Minneapolis may be low on this particular pleasant scale, but the important* thing is that it beats my partner's hometown in southern Oregon. That's what things like this are for, right?

*Important because I made him move to Minneapolis and we just visited there and had to shovel inches and inches of snow and I think he had begun to doubt the wisdom of falling in love with me in the first place.
posted by MsDaniB at 4:43 PM on February 15 [2 favorites]


Man, 60 nice days to 300 not nice days. it really makes you think - when it's nice out, you really gotta get outside!
posted by rebent at 4:43 PM on February 15 [4 favorites]


Portland, Or: 59 days
Buffalo, NY: 73 days

There is something very wrong with this analysis.
posted by munchingzombie at 4:43 PM on February 15 [8 favorites]


Yeah, flod, I was a little curious as to when Alaska (not that there would be that many so-called pleasant days in Barrow) and Hawaii were drummed out of the Union.
posted by TDavis at 4:49 PM on February 15 [3 favorites]


There is something very wrong with this analysis.

According to this analysis the 80 degree, dry weather that happens in Portland all summer is unpleasant. And it's true. Stay in California, it is way nicer there.
posted by Mister Fabulous at 4:50 PM on February 15 [10 favorites]


“pleasant” here means the mean temperature was between (55° F and 75° F), the minimum temperature was above 45° F, the maximum temperature was below 85° F and there was no significant precipitation or snow depth.

I would not have guessed the Portland vs Buffalo result either. But the criteria are rather vague in terms of precipitation. What does "no significant precipitation or snow depth." mean?
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 4:58 PM on February 15


I HAVE MADE A HUGE MISTAKE!
posted by srboisvert at 5:06 PM on February 15 [3 favorites]


There is something very wrong with this analysis.

If you haven't lived someplace with gross, humid summers it's hard to recognize just how nice summers in Buffalo are.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 5:10 PM on February 15 [5 favorites]


Looking at the data for all the weather stations in Anchorage, Alaska (which already covers 40% of the state's population), the "pleasant" days start in very late May and continue until late August or very early September. Call it 80 or 90 pleasant days a year, so 21% to 25%. This accords with a ratio of all the pleasant days (3,100) to all the days total (15,335). That's pretty good; better than the East Coast cities with 60-70 such days. (I didn't take precipitation into account, though. Many days have little to no precipitation, but I see at least one 99.99 where it rained all day on an otherwise pleasant day.)
posted by Rangi at 5:10 PM on February 15


Actually, LA at 183 days surprises me. The LA airport's coldest month averages 57 and the warmest month averages 71. So the entire year is within the "pleasant" criteria. And the number of days with some rain (at least 0.01 inches) is only 30. So I would have thought it would be higher than 183. 365 days minus 30 days of rain leaves 335 dry days. That means there must be 152 days outside the temperature range for pleasant--which surprises me.
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 5:10 PM on February 15


Fifty-six pleasant days. Jesus Fucking Christ, you are telling me that for 22 years I have been putting up with this goddamned relentless fucking soul-crushing grind of day after week after month of non-dog-walking, paw-frostbiting, excruciating-arthritic-roof-raking, ice-damming, obscene-gasbill-paying, snowblower-related-carpal-tunneling, chronic-shivering, half-assed-county-snowplowing, 75-dollar-towtruck-fee-paying tundra (and that's just the non-humid, non-bug-filled, non-allergy-making half of the year) for the sake of 56 decent days?

[sob] I need a drink.
posted by FelliniBlank at 5:18 PM on February 15 [7 favorites]


What if you *like* the rain though?
posted by hellojed at 5:22 PM on February 15 [3 favorites]


I live in Los Angeles and grew up in a similarly non-Northeastern climate. New Orleans is rainier and not quite as warm year-round, but I grew up with the understanding that it should never get colder than about 40 degrees, flip flops are for wearing in March, and winter coats are for chumps. I have never understood the whole "waaaaah but I miss seasons" rant in L.A. Fuck seasons. 72 and clear skies 4 lyfe.

(More rain/overcast would be fine with me, though. I also miss crisp fall weather and accompanying cider donuts.)
posted by Sara C. at 5:22 PM on February 15 [4 favorites]


I'm tired of this Southron centric view of things.

i'm tired of 21 damned inches of snow everywhere - the southrons have a point
posted by pyramid termite at 5:23 PM on February 15 [3 favorites]


Correction: I made a mistake calculating the Alaska data. The percentage of pleasant days is actually 19.5%, so 71 per year. Also, for Honolulu, Hawaii it's 28.8%, so 105 per year.
posted by Rangi at 5:24 PM on February 15


I also miss crisp fall weather and accompanying cider donuts.

But that's exactly what the "I miss seasons" rant is about! (Well, that, and lovely early winter crispness around the holidays. But then, come Jan. 2, I'm all HAHA, SORRY, SUCKERS! to the rest of the country till the following October.)
posted by scody at 5:26 PM on February 15 [2 favorites]


Seymour Zamboni - is it possible that they're using overnight lows to rule out some days? During the winter it can get well below 50 at night.
posted by Sara C. at 5:26 PM on February 15


is it possible that they're using overnight lows to rule out some days? During the winter it can get well below 50 at night.

Yes, I think you are right. And the occasional bursts of heat in summer will bring some days above the 75 mean threshold. So I guess it works out.

What if you *like* the rain though?

Yeah, this is obviously subjective. I am not a huge fan of California weather. It is way too monotonous for me. I like variety. I like a good rainy day. I like humidity. I like the occasional blizzard. I like DRAMA! But I am a weather nut, so that isn't a big surprise.
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 5:32 PM on February 15


Also, here is my story of how I knew I'd become fully acclimatized to SoCal. One evening in 2006, I was in my living room -- windows open, warm breeze flowing, bare feet up on the table, iced tea in hand -- watching a news report of the Ted Haggard scandal unfolding in Colorado. The reporter was standing in front of his church, dressed in winter gear, snow falling heavily in the background. And I remember actually saying out loud, "forget the hypocrite closeted gay minister. WHY AREN'T THEY TALKING ABOUT THE FREAKY WEATHER?!" It took close to five minutes to realize that it was November. And in November, the rest of the country gets weather.
posted by scody at 5:34 PM on February 15 [4 favorites]


OK, after mentally breathing into a bag for a minute, I've regained my composure, but man, even by Michigan standards, this winter has been Game of Thrones-ier than most.
posted by FelliniBlank at 5:34 PM on February 15 [2 favorites]


i'm tired of 21 damned inches of snow everywhere

It's only 21 inches when it falls. The piles it's getting shovelled into are 3, 4 feet high easy...
posted by mikelieman at 5:37 PM on February 15


We used to live in South Carolina, which rates a 51-days here, and now we live in PA, 64-days!

No one could believe we wanted to move from SC back into a winter state, but I feel vindicated that the winter temps are canceled out by the fact that May-September in much of the south is UNBEARABLY DISGUSTINGLY HOT. Even in my February cabin fever... I'll take winter over being hot as ball soup all summer long.
posted by nakedmolerats at 5:40 PM on February 15 [1 favorite]


This is all wrong. St. Louis has 47 days of nice weather; Denver has 37.

From my experience as a human, St. Louis has unbearably hot and humid summers, and tedious cold gray cloudy winters, with the snow and ice just sitting around getting dirty.

Denver has some hot spells in the summer, but it is not humid. (You know the cliche. It's true.) The winters feature snow, which quickly melts under the nicely close Sun. And there are warm days in Denver's Januaries and Februaries, unlike points east.

There must be some better ways to evaluate weather. Of course, I happen to like variety, so SoCal weather would not be as entertaining to me. Some people like more predictable weather, though.
posted by kozad at 5:40 PM on February 15 [1 favorite]


NYC 67 days. That's actually far fewer than I'd have thought. After the past couple weeks, I would consider 45 degrees and rainy extremely pleasant.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 5:52 PM on February 15 [2 favorites]


Yeah, the biggest weakness of these calculations are that they don't include humidity. Southern California will still do really well, but hellish places like Houston would drop considerably.

I like seasons and couldn't stand living without them unless I were somewhere truly beautiful, like Hawaii. Southern California? Meh.

My metric would be variety in the weather, but inside the extremes, and low humidity and no blanket penalty for precipitation (high humidity would cover some of that, though).

I don't mind it being cold outside and I don't really understand why so many people (including my mother) hate it so much. But I hate it being really hot (and humid) outside, and many people think that's preferable to being cold. I couldn't stand Austin in the summer, but the winters were pretty great.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 5:55 PM on February 15


Grew up and lived in L.A. most of my life, half of it in the San Fernando Valley where that upper limit of 85 degrees was exceeded A LOT... moved up the coast to San Luis Obispo, where the winter nights are usually under 45 (but over 32, we have lotsa year-round agriculture) but summer daytime is rarely over 85... so how did my new home get 80 LESS "pleasant" days than L.A.? I demand a recount.

And it's all kinda meaningless when you're getting the worst of the Great California Drought - the last storm to pass through Northern California stayed almost 100 miles north of here, and the latest measurements on groundwater in the grape-growing area is so bad, they may be converting from vintage wines to vintage raisins (bad joke). But still, we must have had at least 200 'pleasant' days by the site's definition in 2013.
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:59 PM on February 15 [3 favorites]


NYC 67 days

Yeah, this is about what I figured having lived there.

This covers:

- three weeks of fall before it gets stupid cold, and where it's not raining.

- three weeks of spring before it gets stupid hot, and where it's not raining.

- that one weekend in February where it gets unseasonably warm and then pulls the rug out from under you by going right back to freezing and probably throws in some wintry mix bullshit in, to boot.

- twenty random days during the summer where it's kind of bearable as long as you're OK with the humidity.
posted by Sara C. at 6:16 PM on February 15


We get plenty of pleasant days here on the island in the Spring, Summer and Fall. In the winter we adjust our definition of pleasant to include (relatively) warm rain.
posted by islander at 6:20 PM on February 15 [1 favorite]


Man, this is a stupid metric for "pleasant." I defy you to find a person who won't prefer a clear, sunny day at 50 degrees to a gray, sad day at 60.
posted by koeselitz at 6:24 PM on February 15 [3 favorites]


Yeah, how pleasant is it when there's nothing to drink? SoCal would be a wasteland (or at leas significantly less populated) were it not for huge water projects to make those arid coastal regions so pleasantly livable.

And after living in a high desert climate for a scant year and a half, it's actually nice to get a bit of frost and a bit of heat. I recently went outside and it was above freezing, with minimal wind. I walked down a few houses in shorts and a t-shirt and thought "this is a really nice night." These metrics are sorely lacking.

Low humidity year 'round, mild heat and mild chill, and I'm estatic.
posted by filthy light thief at 6:26 PM on February 15


South-Western Ontario has sweaty hot summers and icy cold winters. I love LA. Why don't I move there? Sorry, mere ignorance.
posted by ovvl at 6:30 PM on February 15


FOUR FEET OF SNOW WHICH DOES NOT KILL ME MAKES ME STRONGER
posted by Flunkie at 7:04 PM on February 15 [3 favorites]


Should we talk about the government, Horace Rumpole?
posted by Krazor at 7:27 PM on February 15 [1 favorite]


I spent most of my life in Canada's foggiest (124 days/yr!!!), windiest (*average* 25 kph) and cloudiest (only 1,497 hrs/yr sunshine) city . It never gets warm , though it also really never gets cold, by canadian standards -- mean temps from -5 to +16 C. Welcome to the coast.
posted by Bovine Love at 7:49 PM on February 15 [1 favorite]


I contest ANY list which lists Oxnard as the 3rd most pleasant place.
posted by hal_c_on at 7:57 PM on February 15 [1 favorite]


Is there a similar website for pleasant, warm nights? Because while I mostly enjoy the weather here in the fifth most-pleasant city, it sure would be nice to live somewhere where I could leave my jacket at home for a couple months.
posted by intendedeffect at 7:58 PM on February 15


Also, the data behind it is kinda ....off.

2 zip codes in chicago have a difference of 13 days? What?
posted by hal_c_on at 7:59 PM on February 15 [2 favorites]


80 degrees is easily pleasant to a lot of people. There should be sliders to adjust your range of preferred temperatures and recalculate.
posted by scose at 8:07 PM on February 15 [6 favorites]


Their range of pleasant temperatures strikes me as downright chilly! I live in Austin, which this claims has a mere 61 pleasant days per year; to my mind (and exposed flesh), we've got about two and a half months where it's inarguably too hot, and maybe a month where it's too cold, most years. That leaves well over 200 days a year where the weather is practically paradisaical. Your climate may vary...
posted by slappy_pinchbottom at 8:10 PM on February 15 [5 favorites]


I confess, I'm pretty well over this fucking winter, with its endless subzero days (to the point that my current dream is "could it just be over 20F for a couple days in a row?").

But I grew up in Phoenix and then lived in San Francisco for a long time. And I still, after almost five years in Minnesota, am committed to the idea that Seasons Are Good. Because I hated having to bring a blankie and a sweater to work when I lived in Phoenix, to combat the 45 degree difference between the parking lot and my desk, and I wasn't crazy about the fact that my bedroom was sunny and bright in San Francisco but then I'd walk out the front door into a foggy gloom, and have to walk to work in June wearing a full-length wool coat.

(on the other hand, I also lived in Redwood City, CA for a few years and lately I'm really appreciating the days when my climate was Best By Government Test).
posted by padraigin at 8:12 PM on February 15


the pleasantness between where I am now, Dayton OH, an where I was before, Alpine TX, is negligible. I call bullshit on it.
posted by battleshipkropotkin at 8:37 PM on February 15


I think the weather is delightful up to 90. And this makes no mention no humidity, which is a total game changer.
posted by cccorlew at 8:39 PM on February 15 [2 favorites]


Looks like Long Island was also discharged from the union and set to sea.

I'm iffy on the pleasantness of this all, though my tolerance of what's considered pleasant is wider than the existing parameters.
posted by myopicman at 9:13 PM on February 15


While I get the love for Honolulu, not all of Hawaii is perfect. Hilo gets 157 inches of rain per year, 275 days a year.
posted by Marky at 10:07 PM on February 15


I got bored with California weather after being there a month.

What's it like today? Sunny.
What's it like tomorrow? Sunny.
What's it like next week? Sunny, with a side of burning flames.

It's just so boring.
posted by sonic meat machine at 10:24 PM on February 15 [1 favorite]


True, there is a bit of subjectivity to the range I selected.

That’s an understatement. 55 degrees? That’s cold. Pleasant is 70 to 90 degrees with low humidity.

Man, this is a stupid metric for "pleasant." I defy you to find a person who won't prefer a clear, sunny day at 50 degrees to a gray, sad day at 60.

It is stupid a stupid metric, but I would be that person.
posted by bongo_x at 11:49 PM on February 15 [5 favorites]


Yeah, I guess I should not have phrased that as a universal, bongo_x. Personally, I am a guy who prefers 30 degrees and sunny to 70 degrees and cloudy. I do not care what the temp is; I don't mind wearing a few more layers. But gray days make me want to commit suicide by oatmeal immersion.
posted by koeselitz at 12:14 AM on February 16


It'll take more than decent weather to make a day spent in southern California pleasant.
posted by Omission at 1:05 AM on February 16 [1 favorite]


Hahaha, yeah fuck all us people.
posted by Justinian at 1:10 AM on February 16


OK, West Sweden chiming in. can't directly compare but ballpark it...It's the worst rain-hole imaginable here.
BUT:
You guys can't cold-smoke bacon in the garden without complicated rigs and thermometers. I got that for free in the sleet and nastiness of lasts week, just had to keep the fire going, everything else went automatically. Result: home smoked bacon! Consider.
posted by Namlit at 2:18 AM on February 16


Between 55 and 75? That's 13 and 24°C. What sort of brutal joke is this supposed to be? I still remember the long, dark winter of '04 where on some days it barely got above 20°C, they almost had to shut the city down. Why would rational people choose to live in these frigid hell holes?
posted by markr at 3:19 AM on February 16 [1 favorite]


It'll take more than decent weather to make a day spent in southern California pleasant.

I don't get this. I think southern CA and LA is great (the weather is monotonous but that is exactly what you want as a visitor). I had a wonderful trip there about a year ago. So is visiting LA sort of like visiting a good friend's baby? You get to cuddle and love and coo for a brief time and then you leave and the parents must deal with the screaming and the vomit and the poopy diaper?
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 3:43 AM on February 16 [1 favorite]


Yep, sorry, just being grouchy/bitchy. Southern Californians everywhere, sorry if I upset you. Carry on.
posted by Omission at 6:10 AM on February 16


Here in Seattle we have a relatively high 83 "pleasant" days a year by this definition (higher than Sacramento, CA or Tampa, FL). But I hope you like your mild temperatures with a nice side dish of cloudy skies...
posted by mbrubeck at 6:55 AM on February 16


That’s an understatement. 55 degrees? That’s cold. Pleasant is 70 to 90 degrees with low humidity.

Seriously? 70 is pretty much my top end for comfort and anything over 80 counts as Pits of Hell weather as far as I'm concerned. 55 to sixty is just about perfect.
posted by octothorpe at 7:09 AM on February 16 [1 favorite]


"Seriously? 70 is pretty much my top end for comfort and anything over 80 counts as Pits of Hell weather as far as I'm concerned. 55 to sixty is just about perfect."

That doesn't really make sense to me.

Wikipedia says this about room temperature:
In more rigorous scientific contexts it may denote the range between 20 and 23.5 °C (68.0 and 74.3 °F) with an average of 21 °C (70 °F).
...which seems about right to me, although an indoor temperature of 70 °F is colder than I like.

But I can't really understand how the comfortable indoor temperature for humans (because, keep in mind, while climatic preferences vary, body temperature and ability to regulate it are relatively uniform) would be someone's maximum for outdoor temperature, with temperatures considerably cooler than room temperature, like your ~57 °F, would be preferred.

Providing that the humidity is comfortable, then I'd expect that the ideal outside temperature for human comfort would be something around room temperature, 70 °F (21 °C). Given that there's most likely going to be some wind, then it makes sense to raise that ideal some, to account for evaporative cooling, and again assuming that the humidity is within the comfortable range. So, maybe, 74 °F.

Moving into speculation and subjectivity, and with awareness of the preferences attested above, it seems to me that there's somewhat more tolerance for lower outdoor temperatures than for higher outdoor temperatures, relative to that 74 °F outdoor ideal. Twenty degrees hotter is 94 °F (34 °C), which is too hot, I think, for the vast majority of people. While, in contrast, twenty degrees cooler is 54 F° (12 C°) and, although too cool for some, still tolerable for many.

With that in mind, then, and assuming that we're not talking about some pacific island in the lower latitudes where the temperature is practically constant, and so assuming that there's going to be some variation, we might want to skew the center of that range back downward so as to avoid the more unpleasant highs and accept some mildly unpleasant lows. So, maybe five degrees and we prefer that the range is only about thirty degrees, rather than forty? That brings us to a 69 °F (21 °C) ideal, with winter lows about 54 °F (12 °C) and summer highs about 84 °F (29 °C).

Maybe that's still too wide a range for an ideal, and we should move the extremes another five degrees F, to 59-79 °F (15-26 °C). That sounds pretty good to me. If I were willing to give up seasons, which I'm not.

Wikipedia has a comprehensive and interesting entry on Thermal Comfort. Here's a couple of charts of the Predicted Mean Vote / Predicted Percentage Dissatisfied model, which is built around the results of standard thermal comfort surveys, which ask about "particular combination[s] of air temperature, mean radiant temperature, relative humidity, air speed, metabolic rate, and clothing insulation": the results as a temperature-relative humidity chart and a psychometric chart.

Those show an ideal of about 77 °F (25 °C) at a relative humidity of 50%. Note that these are models of indoor ideals.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 10:37 AM on February 16 [1 favorite]


Ivan, one thing that makes sense to me is that it's better for outside to be colder because you're more likely to be engaging in physical activity that raises your body heat.

Anything hotter than about 70 degrees and I will start sweating if I run, do a long walk or strenuous hike, schlep heavy items, etc. Meanwhile, indoors, I'm more likely to be doing something sedentary.

Personally my only real complaint about the weather here in SoCal is that there are precious few opportunities for outerwear. Which has forced me to completely rethink my wardrobe in ways I find irritating. Which I suppose is a nice way of saying that without a jacket to hide my ass I feel fat all the time.
posted by Sara C. at 10:45 AM on February 16


There must be a minimum population for these stats... Because all the beach cities around LA are much pleasanter than LA is. Anaheim seems to be the default city for Orange County and Anaheim is hell compared to Huntington Beach. Hell being relative, of course.

I understand hating Southern California for the overpopulation, but it's part of what makes this such an awesome place to live... I can drive for 5 minutes and get amazing pho in little Saigon, or shop at a couple of Japanese markets, or a couple of Persian markets, or any number of Mexican restaurants or markets.

If there's a movie that's only playing on a few screens in the country, I can probably go see it. I'm going to see Book of Mormon on Tuesday. Yesterday I drove for 20 minutes and toured the queen Mary, went to a Scottish festival and watched people compete in the Highland games, and went to a beer tasting, all in the same place. Parking did suck, though.

I can drive to the beach and be in the water in 10 minutes, or drive for 1.5 hours and be skiing (although not so much this winter). If I get sick of people I can get in my truck and drive into the Cleveland national forest and not see anyone for hours.

Anyway, I love visiting places with weather and color and such, but I'll never live anywhere else.
posted by Huck500 at 11:29 AM on February 16 [1 favorite]


> "I defy you to find a person who won't prefer a clear, sunny day at 50 degrees to a gray, sad day at 60."

IT'S CALLED GOTH DAD AND IT'S DEEPLY MEANINGFUL.

GOD YOU ARE RUINING MY LIFE.

*door slam*
posted by kyrademon at 11:42 AM on February 16 [6 favorites]


55? That is freezing!

/sandiegan
posted by Aizkolari at 12:11 PM on February 16


I was born and raised in southern California. Having lived in the Northeast and Midwest now for almost 10 years (eek!) people always ask me how I'm adjusting to the winter, and my answer is always: Winter is awesome! Snow is pretty! I love the cold! (I really do -- there's something exhilarating about sunny, clear 20-degree days.) My shoulders/chest look great in coats!

This always makes them pause, but then I reveal that it's really the humid summers of the East that get to me. I am one of those people that sweats incredibly easily -- any physical exertion outdoors above 75 or so and I am sweating buckets -- and I hate, hate, hate with a fiery passion the feeling of wading through thick muggy humid air in the summer. I spent most of July in the Pacific Northwest last year and I wanted to CRY WITH JOY every single day because I forgot how amazing it is to have dry summer days.

As it is, I have a really awesome opportunity from a professional perspective to spend the summer in DC this year, but the thought of spending July and August in that hellish muggy inferno is making me pause. (I'll probably end up taking it though anyway -- my thinking being if I can survive DC climactically in the summer I'll love it the rest of the year.)
posted by andrewesque at 8:55 PM on February 16


Ivan Fyodorovich: "But I can't really understand how the comfortable indoor temperature for humans (because, keep in mind, while climatic preferences vary, body temperature and ability to regulate it are relatively uniform) would be someone's maximum for outdoor temperature, with temperatures considerably cooler than room temperature, like your ~57 °F, would be preferred."

Well, it makes slightly more sense than what markr said above, which was that days with highs of 68 Fahrenheit (20 C) almost shut their city down in 2004 because it was so cold. I guess that could make sense, since it isn't saying what the low was - there have been 24-hour periods in Boston over the past few weeks that went from a high of 68 F (20 C) down to a low of -10 F (-23 C). But I got the distinct impression that wasn't what was going on there.
posted by koeselitz at 10:28 PM on February 16


That was a joke. markr is in Brisbane where the temperatures reach above 40°C in summer and as high as 35°C in winter (!), and basically never drop below freezing.
posted by mbrubeck at 7:57 AM on February 17


So apparently it was not a joke.
posted by koeselitz at 9:51 AM on February 17


(I mean, yes, I saw where markr is. I looked at the profile. But markr was indeed seriously saying that 20 C is too cold.)
posted by koeselitz at 9:52 AM on February 17


That doesn't really make sense to me.

Makes perfect sense to me. At normal east-coast-ish humidity levels, I can take 80F bur really prefer something between 60 and 70 outside during the day, and 40-50 at night. In winter I prefer keeping my house at about 60-62.

Some of it is that I just prefer cooler temperatures than other people do; people vary.

But some of it is that, to my mind, cooler temperatures are just objectively easier to deal with or adapt to on an hour to hour, day to day basis. When it's 60, if I'm cold I can put on sweats or a thicker sweater and if I'm feeling warm I can take them off. When it's 75 and I'm already down to shorts and a t-shirt, there's nowhere left to go except unacceptable-to-me options like shirtlessness.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:10 AM on February 17


Keep in mind that this is all going to vary incredibly depending on where in the world one is.

I spent a winter backpacking in India. In south India it was in the 60-70F range during daylight hours every day. Everywhere I went, I ran into people saying this was the hardest, coldest, most difficult winter they'd experienced in years. I saw people bundled up in heavy knitted scarves and even balaclavas. Meanwhile I considered it optimal temperature for humans, and a vacation from the frigid weather back home in New York.
posted by Sara C. at 10:25 AM on February 17


Meanwhile the other day an Alaskan friend of mine remarked on how balmy and wonderful a 20 degree day is.
posted by Sara C. at 10:26 AM on February 17


20 C is absolutely too cold. Much colder than that and I might be forced to find a sweater or something. I'm not even sure where I'd get something like that. One of those stores that outfit expeditions to the arctic?
posted by markr at 2:27 PM on February 17 [1 favorite]


Meanwhile the other day an Alaskan friend of mine remarked on how balmy and wonderful a 20 degree day is.

it's funny, but one thing i've learned this winter is that a 20F degree day CAN feel somewhat balmy after you've had several days where it didn't get above 10 and was below 0 in the morning
posted by pyramid termite at 5:38 PM on February 17 [1 favorite]


My ideal is Hawaii, where the temperature is between 70-85 every single day, even in December. I got to wear just the same outfit all freaking day and night without having to worry about changing layers and where I was going to stash all of these damn clothes. It was nice and warm without being boiling hot.

NorCal (where I live) isn't bad, SoCal would be better, but Hawaii....man, I wish.
posted by jenfullmoon at 12:05 PM on February 18


It's up to a glorious 43F today. I'm ready to break out the shorts.
posted by octothorpe at 1:04 PM on February 18


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