Nothing says winter is coming like Madam’s birthday coming up on Halloween. We don’t celebrate Halloween in Australia, but I still remember chuckling through gritted teeth, as I pushed out a block of apartments, that she would be saying ‘trick or treat’ her whole life. I am very proud to say that she has been an absolute treat.

Nothing says winter is coming like the enormous groan coming from Sir when he realized that daylight saving time ends next Sunday. As you may remember, Sir is convinced he has SAD – seasonal affective disorder. I am conversely convinced that he sees this as a carte blanche to moan for six months without my being allowed to get overly fraught with him. I think I would have a whole lot more sympathy if he didn’t go into pre-moan mode on June 23 when he likes to remind me that the days are getting shorter. I feel a bit of Boy Cried Wolf entering into the agenda, and I will, quite frankly, have none of it.

Nothing says winter is coming like the frantic scrabbling about the closet trying to find clothes that a) still fit; b) you’re still vaguely interested in and c) are suitable to wear to work. Thank the Lord and pass the gin that I am not subjected to that particularly hideous Corporate America adage that “business dress must be worn at all times, even to the grocery store, and if you are one of the higher up muckety mucks, to bed.” No, thankfully, I now have bosses who don’t particular mind what you wear so long as the work gets done. Fancy that, dear reader, bosses who know the value of their staff, no matter if they’re not in suit and tie, or severe frocks and blazers.

But nothing says winter is coming more than the onset of football.

A high school coach in Texas led his team out on the field recently, whereupon his team proceeded to cream the opposition to the tune of approximately eight million to nothing. He tried everything – bringing in the bus boys and tea ladies to ease the pain, but to no avail. The opponents could not have scored if no one else was on the field.

Congratulations forthcoming? “We can do better murmurs” from the losing team? Hell no. What came was a parental complaint to the High School Football Tribunal that the winning coach should be charged with bullying. Can you imagine the bullying that will ensue, aimed at the poor benighted son of the charging parents? Oh dear Lord, get a life Mom and Dad. Crud happens.

The best of all football stories though is the one coming from a recently demised coach who was known for his sense of humor. Upon being asked by Bob Costas why his wife always accompanied him to away games, his stony-faced reply rather floored the commentator:

“Because she’s too ugly to kiss goodbye.”

I never knew him – but I love him to bits.

Happy winter, kids!

Annie Dear lives in Lee’s Summit. Email her at anniedearkc