Cold comfort

Share

Britons are often mocked for their determination to discuss the weather at every opportunity. Weather acts as a form of social lubrication, with a script that gains its charm from its hackneyed familiarity. "Lovely weather, isn't it?" "True. But how long will it last, eh?" "True enough, ha, ha. Bye!" Or there's Version B: "Isn't it cold?" "Isn't it just? Will the winter never end?" "And they call this global warming! I don't see much sign of
warming! Ah well. Byee!"

Britons are often mocked for their determination to discuss the weather at every opportunity. Weather acts as a form of social lubrication, with a script that gains its charm from its hackneyed familiarity. "Lovely weather, isn't it?" "True. But how long will it last, eh?" "True enough, ha, ha. Bye!" Or there's Version B: "Isn't it cold?" "Isn't it just? Will the winter never end?" "And they call this global warming! I don't see much sign of warming! Ah well. Byee!"

Such exchanges, with small variations, can be heard on doorsteps across the country. The dialogues are generally acknowledged even by the participants as being as meaningless in their way as "How are things?" "Oh, you know. Can't complain."

None the less, there comes a point when it is difficult to avoid addressing the topic of the growing oddness of our weather. In a few weeks' time, we may be complaining (as the suffering Greeks are now complaining) about unnatural heat. For the moment, however, it is nice to know that the groaning about a singularly gloomy July is not just psychosomatic - we really do look set to enter the record books (again). Lousy, lousier, lousiest. When it comes to British weather, it is at least comforting to know that records can still be broken.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SQL Developer - Permanent - London - Up to £50k

£45000 - £50000 Per Annum 23 days holiday plus Pension scheme: Clearwater Peop...

Physics Teacher

£130 - £162 per day + UPS: Randstad Education Hull: Physics Teacher Long Term ...

IT Technician (1st/2nd line support) - Leatherhead, Surrey

£23000 - £25000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Technician (1st/2nd line support)...

Primary Teacher EYFS, KS1 and KS2

£85 - £130 per day: Randstad Education Preston: Randstad Education are urgentl...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

We need to talk about homophobia in the police

George Gillett
 

i Editor's letter: Summer holidays are here... so what to do with the children?

Oliver Duff Oliver Duff
Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn