March 1, 2000
I remember as a child in elementary school, we were always taught the old adage, “If March comes in as a lion, it will go out like a lamb.” This pertained to the weather patterns surrounding the month. A nice and sunny day was defined as a “lamb” day while a stormy or windy day was classified as a “lion” day. In first grade, we would color pictures of lambs and lions and hang around the room. When we got older, we would graph the lamb and lion days to determine whether the custom was accurate. Granted, this was rural Idaho where March marked the month when snow would finally leave the potato fields and the mountain winds would come down and dry out the soil to get it ready for another planting season. As a child, I was less interested in planting cycles as I was that on lion days, if the wind was blowing out, you could hit some towering home runs on the playground. We would take turns doing our best Hank Aaron or Willie Mays imitation. If we were in a groove, we may even call our shots just like the Babe. As I grew older, this local custom stuck with me and each year I look at the days differently in March than I do on other days, measuring each against these two animals. This was interesting and somewhat useful when we lived in Idaho but when we moved to Arizona the days took on less meaning. The difference now between a lamb and a lion day is judging between 72 degrees and 75 degrees. Rather than the Idaho gale force winds, in Arizona we have a slight breeze that keeps you cool during those afternoon spring training games. I guess I can chock this lesson up to another useless fact that I was taught as a child. This will go into my book of disillusions along with if I make a goofy face it will freeze that way and girls have cooties. I sometimes wonder if I learned anything of value?