A chilling newspaper flyer was delivered to the Weather Column's door last week. "Brrrrr!" shivered the flyer, which featured three delicious-looking frosty tequila cocktails on its cover. "Remember the polar vortex?"
Remember the (bad word) polar vortex? Really, cheeky little flyer? Oh, yeah, we remember the polar vortex! We'd like to forget it, but unfortunately that portion of our brain is still frozen solid thanks to the worst winter in more than 100 years.
Seriously, how are we supposed to forget the polar vortex when only last Sunday, we endured even more record-breaking cold? Apparently the daily high on Sunday, July 13, was just 15.7 C, the coldest high for that day since back in 1884.
In contrast -- and this is a big (another very bad word) contrast -- this Sunday we will be looking at blast-furnace heat and jungle-style humidity.
According to the cute cartoon-style suns on Environment Canada's website, today we are looking at mostly sunny skies with a tropical high of 27 C, which is one full degree above the normal high of 26 C at this time of year.
On Sunday -- one measly week after setting a record for the coldest daily high -- the outlook calls for a mix of sun and cloud with a 30 per cent chance of showers and a blistering high of 31 C, which will feel even hotter because of our Swedish sauna-style humidity.
The rest of the week looks like nothing but sun, with highs hovering a few degrees above normal almost every day.
Does it bother us that we live in probably the only city in the world where, in a single day, you may have to use both your car's block heater AND its air-conditioning system?
We think we speak for everyone in this humble Prairie burg when we say: No, it doesn't! We are proud to live in a city that is the most generous in the country, the hardest-working in the country, the most in-the-middle in the entire country, and home to the best-looking citizens in the country.
OK, that last thing is based on anecdotal evidence, but we don't think too many of you extremely attractive Winnipeggers are going to disagree. So let's get our good-looking selves outside this weekend to celebrate our wild swings in temperature, starting out at the 27th annual Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival, which runs until July 27 and features a new high of 176 shows at 30 indoor venues.
Tickets are a measly $10 at the door, the box office at 174 Market Ave. or online at winnipegfringe.com. For just $94 you can score a Frequent Fringer pass that will get you into 12 shows, which sounds like a bargain, which is just one more thing Winnipeg is better at than anywhere else in the country.
Speaking of being outdoors, tonight from 6 to 8 p.m., the Weather Column will be at the Fringe Festival's outdoor stage, the Cube, helping the lovely and talented Tricia Cooper introduce some extremely cool acts, none of which we are currently aware of, but we are sure they will be super-entertaining and we plan to introduce the heck out of them.
If you are hankerin' to put on a 10-gallon hat, some spurs and a belt buckle the size of a recreational vehicle -- and let's face it, who isn't? -- you are going to want to mosey on down to Morris this weekend for the annual Stampede & Exhibition, Manitoba's only professional rodeo. We are talking some of the top names in bull riding, broncobusting, roping, barrel racing, steer wrestling, along with rodeo clowns, a kids' pig scramble, an outdoor stage, and (this is from personal experience) some mighty fine vittles.
Since you're out and about already, why not take in Boardwalk Days, the annual summer festival at Winnipeg Beach, featuring a huge midway, an outdoor craft market, a parade, pancake breakfasts and (Ooooh!) fireworks.
Finally, you are going to be seriously ready to bang your heads when we tell you tonight's headline act for the Summer Winds Family Music Festival, held at the Victoria Beach Sports Field on Highway 59, is Canada's oldest and coolest rock band... (wait for it)... Trooper. Tickets are just $50 at summerwindsfest.com.
Which seems like the perfect time to leave you with a taste of one of Trooper's worldwide hits, which goes a little something like this... "He said we're here for a good time/Not a long time (not a long time)/So have a good time/The sun can't shine every day!"
And if you bother to take a look at the weather forecast, the boys could not be more correct.