A national obsession, perhaps. A way to greet people, definitely. But the weather has more to offer than that.
To get to the bottom of the time honoured tradition of speaking in (wa)verse, here is a reminder of what we are up against on an almost daily basis. Winter and summer.
But fear not. Overcast days do have a bright side. Nothing can quite compel you to book a holiday like fog, sleet and the occasional snow. You may even start to question your refusal to invest in raingear.
And if holidays aren’t feasible this year, you can take comfort in the fact that life is short. Metaphysically speaking, it is a sure way for you to enjoy every minute of it.
Of course the beauty of weather-talk is that there are so many ways to dance around with it. Soft day thank god, Good day for drying out. You can even make up sayings of your own without anyone blinking an eyelid. You could fish a barracuda in that. Seems “A ‘hore of a day for the poor aul’ lambs” is another one.
What’s your favourite? Answer in this poll below.
What's your favourite weather phrase? Any others?
— Astrid Madsen (@astridselfbuild) February 18, 2020
And yes, descriptions of the weather are a legitimate means to greet (approach?) your neighbour. Random strangers maybe not. But I’ve seen it happen. In fact weather-talk is a surprisingly easy way to break down social barriers; the shared experience of how abysmal the weather is makes us realise we’re not alone in this big bad world.
Don’t take my word for it; Met Éireann argues the weather is the ultimate conversation opener.
Of course then the weather has the advantage of being one of the most prolific muses for musicians. Think of Singing in the Rain, maybe Purple Rain, and my personal favourite, Rain Rain Go Away.
And if the rain weren’t so doggedly committed to downpour, Ireland wouldn’t be green. Above all, we wouldn’t have a common enemy to lash out on. ‘Cause you know, you wouldn’t put a dog out in that.