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  • Writer's pictureAndy Ross

The Nose Knows


I knew that warmer weather was well on its way long before any meteorologist said so. How? Oh, it was a small observation. One that, at first, I didn’t pay all that much attention to. “Huh. Didn’t I just replace this box of tissues?” I thought as I went through the last one in the box on the nightstand. I replaced it the following morning, then noticed a day or two later I had just gone through the box that was in my office.


Again, I thought “Didn’t I just replace this one?” That’s when I realized that my nose was showing its reliability as a weather forecaster, even more so than that groundhog up in Pennsylvania. Every year, sometimes twice a year, but typically as Winter starts the earliest stages of giving way to Spring, my nose will run every morning as if someone turned on a faucet and forgot about it.


This morning rush, which at times feels akin to the kind of flow a prospector would dance about, typically lasts from the time I get out of bed till I take a shower. The magic of the steam must be what “resets” my nose for the day. Of course, that doesn’t mean I won’t need to use a tissue or two for the rest of the day, just that the constant need for one is greatly diminished.


Even though I’ll be going through about two to three boxes a week, I welcome the yearly nasal dam burst. I’m sure the people who make Puffs plus Vicks also welcome it. As they see a little spike in their sales from me. Picking up one of those bundled four packs at the grocery every single week. What I welcome about this is that it’s a surefire sign that Spring is well on its way.


Sure, it’s not going to happen overnight, but it means the final weeks of cold are with us. For those of us who have always called East Tennessee home, we know this means playing a deceptive dance with warm days bundled right up against cold days. We don’t ween ourselves out of winter into Spring, we indecisively jerk back and forth. But my nose reassures me. Yes, that “spring of deception,” as a popular online post you see around this time each year says, is a real thing.


I don’t worry about it for when it comes to the seasons changing, my nose truly knows all. When does my nose settle down, you’re wondering? It typically stops before the season change fully arrives. Maybe a week or so before the calendar says it’s Spring proper. But till we get to the days when the warmth is here to stay, I’ll keep going about my day investing in boxes upon boxes and tissues and struggling to determine if I’ll need a jacket for the day or not. See you next week.



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