Lawdy. Let it stop raining. Please. Memphis can’t catch a break. The rivers are cresting. The roads are falling apart (again). Rain for days on end now. Actual footage and memes galore in tribute. When it rains around here though, Memphis goes sideways.
Legit. When it rains here, it gets weird. People lose their minds. They lose their ability to operate motor vehicles, which, admittedly, is only sketchy at best in good weather. (Hint: Stop braking for quite literally no reason whatsoever.) We all get mopey and pissed off. Unless you’re that one guy who’s just gleeful and loves jumping in potholes-turned-swimming-pools, it’s chaos.
Rain downtown is a special kind of extra, though. It does even extra-er things to people. I’ve noticed a few I’d love to share with you. Take notes, Extra.
1. People apparently don’t look outside first.
Never fails, as I stand at my window, five stories above a busy street and two parking areas, I see people wandering around totally unprepared. It’s been raining for something like three years solid now. Did you think downtown was exempt?? Why are you standing down there at the pay-to-park kiosk pissed off right now? Yeah, sweetie. Your hair’s screwed. What’d you think was going to happen? People can be dumb.
2. You can’t get mad that you’re wet and it’s your fault.
This is pure Darwinism at work. There are even apps that will notify you that there is liquid misery falling out of the sky. Did you know that you can use that thousand dollar pocket computer to investigate your anticipated weather woes? If you’re really ambitious, you can be privy to real-time footage of the carnage on the TDOT cameras. Soaked? That’s on you. Stop griping. You’re pissing everyone else off now.
3. Strappy high heels, while cute, are not your friend in downtown rain.
Girl. I get it. And real talk. You’re killing it. I admire your tenacity. I don’t wanna walk around down here in heels on a good day, let alone these nasty, dreary, rain-soaked ones. Definitely not nasty, dreary, rain-soaked ones in February. Honey, it’s cold out. And now your feet are freezing. You probably ruined those things, too.
I get that boots or something might not be as “sexy,” but at least your feet will be warm and dry, they won’t hurt at the end of the night from all that walking in the world’s most impractical shoe design, and you won’t end up slipping and twisting your ankle while you sprint across busy streets to save your makeup from the onslaught of stinging droplets. I’m just looking out. You’re welcome.
4. Buy a real umbrella and stop complaining about how wet it is.
We get it. We’re a little damp ourselves. But we live here, and we know that you buy a real umbrella. Like, 60″ in diameter. Minimum. Wanna know what’s wet on us? The bottoms of our closed-toed, non-strappy shoes.
Folks gotta stop carrying around these little dinky Dollar Store umbrellas. I get it. They’re easier to keep up with and all, but inevitably, that river wind is gonna come rushing through an alley and flip that joker inside out. How’s that working out for you now? And then you’re pissed again. On no planet should folks be allowed to be angry about how wet they are if they’re too lazy to access the forecast or get a real umbrella. C’mon, y’all. Physics.
5. Dance in the rain.
Sometimes it doesn’t matter. We’ll check the forecast. Wear the right shoes. Carry an umbrella that doubles as a baseball bat. And then a car passes at the right time and you get puddle sprayed. Or maybe that alley wind tunnel yanks you around like a rag doll and the deluge breaks through all your defenses.
If you happen to be one of those folks, just smile in it. You’ll dry. Go grab a highball glass of warm-you-up whiskey from Belle Tavern and give it a minute. Don’t let a little water ruin your night. It ain’t that crucial. Your people still think you’re beautiful, especially when you can laugh at life’s rainstorms.