February 29, 2008
Good morning and welcome to Summit Up, the world’s only daily column diagnosing ourselves as having a serious case of spring fever.The symptoms are all there. After Friday’s 40-degree day, we noticed our fidgety fingers, short-term attention deficit disorder, and a sudden lust for daydreaming, and assumed the worst: It’s full-blown.So, we did what any other health-conscious, web-savvy person would do: We searched the internet for a cure. What we found disappointed us. Turns out, there is no cure, even though it is well-defined as a medical condition also known as “Cabin Fever.”According to Wikipedia, “Cabin fever is a condition that produces restlessness and irritability caused from being in a confined space.” Apparently, it’s got so bad in the Midwest – whose residents have complained especially loud this year about the winter, which makes us wonder: “Since when is February in Michigan supposed to be warm?” – a newspaper in Clinton, Iowa, asked about it to a few experts.One of them, a licensed mental health counselor, said, “Technically there is no cabin fever. It is more a social term, not an official term. It is more a colloquialism.” Cabin Fever, according to “Health & Diet – Guide to Food, Nutrition, Diet and Health,” is a type of hysteria brought on by spending too much time indoors and is directly descended from long haul journeys where one is stuck in cramped conditions for too long. “Its symptoms are of many kinds, but are not dramatic enough to attract attention,” the guide said. This is where we disagree. We’re pretty sure our constant daydreaming, not to mention our sudden and uncontrollable urge to frolic, are certainly dramatic.***Ryan Hoffman of Dillon wanted to air this concern about folks who wrongly use handicap parking stickers on their car. He wrote: “There aren’t too many things in life that really get to me. But there is one thing that really crawls under my skin. That is the fact that there are a lot of people around that have handicap placards that are not necessarily handicap. And by that I mean the people that park in the handicap parking at the ski resorts. It’s funny to watch because they get out of their cars put their boots on, throw their skis over their shoulders and off they walk to the ski lift and proceed to ski all day. While I sit in my car waiting for a spot so that can get my wheelchair out and go about my business. I have a gut feeling that if you are able to get on and off a ski lift and ski all day that you should not be parked in one of these spots. You know who you are and you should be ashamed of yourselves. And who are the doctors that are prescribing these handicap placards to these people. You should also be ashamed of yourselves. I would pay a hundred dollars a day to park and then would park in the furthest spot from the lift just to be able to walk again. I have really noticed in the past year-and-a-half of being paralyzed how many selfish people there really are in this world.”Sorry Ryan. We’ll be right beside you convincing the world to be a nicer, gentler place.***It’s Saturday, and we’re out frolicking, no matter what the weather’s like. E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.