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Marmion’s Manly Man: How to out-macho the cold weather

In the wake of the polar vortex and Atlanta’s “snow-pocalypse” of two dreadful inches, I’ve decided to develop some rather unconventional weather-handling techniques.

One must deal with a winter storm the same way a person deals with a fully-grown grizzly bear. No, not by running away and seeking immediate shelter like most rational humans, but by showing that 600-pound, 6-and-a-half-foot behemoth what a 150-pound runner from the Chicago suburbs can do.

Thankfully, I only try to muscle out an unstoppable force of nature and not a grizzly bear; that’d be just insane.

For most of these tips, I recommend channeling the inner cold. To get in the right mindset, one can try skinny-dipping in the Fox River. Always remember the bright orange floaties, however; safety remains key even during a brisk plunge.

Macho cold buster secret No. 1 – snuggle. Snuggling, sometimes considered cold’s worst nightmare, maintains the manly image while combating subzero temps.

Any object can serve as a sufficient snuggle apparatus – a pillow, a pet or a loved one (consenting and otherwise). Proper snuggle form requires maximum cuddle concentration, as well as a firm understanding of the difficult concept of napping.

Macho cold buster secret No. 2 – crave the cocoa. Hot chocolate provides the body with three essential vitamins and minerals: happiness, love and sugar.

For every single marshmallow and spoonful of whip cream, one earns an extra tough point to use at the local Dude Store. The Dude Store offers an amazing selection of orange floaties, as well as 33 different varieties of imported hot chocolate.

Macho cold buster secret No. 3 – long underwear. Not only stylish, but also incredibly comfortable, long underwear gives the wearer a sense of balminess sealed tight within two cottony garment leg dwellings.

When attempting to choose a pair, I advise looking for the hot pink ones. The cold will both admire the fantastic knack for winter fashion and stay clear because of envy.

Macho cold buster secret No. 4 – heartwarming movies. Along with whispering sweet nothings to the frigid open air, this tactic upholds the most manliness with the least amount of work (laziness plus masculinity equals an eventuality).

Now, a few boundaries must exist for this cold buster secret. First of all, only 75 percent of the movie should be spent crying – anymore and one might run the risk of dry eyes in the morning.

Second, all those watching a heartwarming movie must have a crying buddy present equipped with a box of soft Kleenex. Yes, a crying buddy can double as a snuggle object.

In all seriousness, intensive training in the above skills can keep any unprepared citizen safe from the unusual weather patterns. By using sheer brawn, one can force the elements to wish they had stayed on break. 

• Kurt Zepeda is a St. Charles resident and a senior at Marmion Academy in Aurora. He enjoys running, writing and the occasional confection. His column runs every other Thursday in the Kane County Chronicle. Contact him at

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