by Clint Younts
Bluebonnets are thick as ticks on a hound’s belly, and other wildflowers have begun popping up in my pasture. My pecan tree and those devilish mesquite trees have just sprouted leaves. So, after our horrific week of winter, I officially declare it’s springtime in Texas.
Most native Texans are aware that spring weather in the Lone Star state is unpredictable and fluctuates from hot to cold at the drop of a hat, making me think Mother Nature is menopausal. Unlike the other seasons, you just can’t predict the weather in spring. In summer, we know it’s gonna be hot as Satan’s belt buckle and dry as a camel’s turd. In the fall, it start’s out blazing hot, then turns bitterly cold on the one Friday night you decide to attend a high school football game. As for winter, normally we get a week or two of frigid weather (for us Texans, that’s when the temperature drops below 58 degrees), but the rest of the time, it’s right pleasant.
I’m a bit curious what first-year residents in Texas, possibly immigrants from California or some gawd-awful place north of the Red River, think of our spring so far. I reckon those folks of northern descent are liking our warm springtime weather. They might have a different opinion once their outdoor thermometer explodes after the mercury shoots up like an Elon Musk rocket. We can wake up to a chilly April morning and have our coffee out on the deck, but by 10 o’clock, the heat and humidity will have your pajamas clinging to your skin like barnacles on a shrimp boat.
What do y’all imported Texas residents (I’m sorry, but you aren’t a Texan just because you live here) think of our spring flora? Sure, the wildflowers are beautiful, but what do you think of the yellow tint on your white Mercedes now? How many times a day do y’all go through a car wash? Native Texans accept the fact that we’ll all drive yellow vehicles for a month, then grab a chisel and the garden hose and wash off all the pollen.
Speakin’ of pollen, who else has a sinus cavity full of snot and their head feels like an over-inflated Michelin? Luckily, I have good allergy pills and absorbent shirt sleeves. If you newcomers are also suffering, don’t worry. It’ll only last 3-4 months. Pass the Flonase.
I’m also curious if y’all like the little green caterpillars that dangle from elm trees better than the big fuzzy ones that crawl all over the oak trees. They both like to plop down on your neck. These caterpillars are kinda like snowbirds. Once a year, they drop down from above us, hang around and become a nuisance. Then, once the days get hotter than the engine block of a stolen Chevy, they just disappear.
Spring also is when snakes and stinging insects reappear. Are y’all acceptant of these Texas residents, too? I suppose these nasty critters also live in other states, but I’ve only gotten intimately close to them here in Texas. Speaking of insects, of all the millions of species on earth, I suspect half of them reside in Texas. Heck, I found about a hundred of them crawlin’ up my leg yesterday.
Have y’all noticed Mayflies and June bugs always appear in March or April? I guess they don’t look at the calendar. This morning, well before dawn, I thought a meteor had exploded and was pelting our house with space debris. Turned out it was a swarm of myopic June bugs.
Yep, spring in Texas can be beautiful and bothersome, all at the same time. Crazy weather, irritating pollen and annoying insects might drive some folks away, but most native Texans love springtime. If y’all newcomers aren’t liking our spring, just wait until summer gets here. Don’t throw your moving boxes away just yet.