Christmas 2022

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Chloe, Lucas and Emy

Wishing you love and warmth during the season. See you next year and thanks for listening!

"Seeing is believing, but sometimes the most real things in the world are the things we can't see."-The Polar Express

"It's not how much we give but how much love we put into giving." -Mother Theresa

The holidays are here! Christmas and New Year’s… oh my!

The holidays. They are here and I have noticed that typically around this time of year, people change their focus.  

Here at Wyoming Humanities things get really slow.

Nobody’s responding so much on social media.

Everyone’s running around all distracted.

It’s cold!! I mean record breaking cold. They said it was going to be cold. Turns out, they were right. Casper’s low temperature of 42 degrees below zero could be the coldest the community has ever recorded.

As always leave a review if you enjoyed these stories and follow us on Instagram or visit the webpage of the Wyoming Humanities!

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Emy Digrappa (00:01):

Welcome to Winds of Change. I am your host, Emy Digrappa. Winds of Change is centered on the people, places, history and stories of Wyoming. We talk about identity, community, land, and the winds of change, and what it means to thrive in our state. How does someone identify with wide open spaces and big personalities in small towns? Listen to folks from across our state, share their connection to Wyoming and home. Brought to you by Wyoming Humanities.

(00:53):

Hi, Lucas. Hi, Chloe.

Chloe Flagg (00:54):

Hi, Emy. Hi, Lucas.

Lucas (00:56):

Hi. Hello. Hello. How's it going today? How are we? Staying warm, I hope?

Chloe Flagg (01:01):

We are, luckily. I just checked the weather here in Laramie, and it's only negative 11, but it does feel like negative 33, which is an improvement from when I woke up this morning. It's feeling warmer, I guess.

Lucas (01:18):

Yeah, it's warmed up here too. Negative 18 degrees today.

Chloe Flagg (01:23):

Excellent, excellent. Emy, you're in Jackson, right? And it's not negatives.

Emy Digrappa (01:27):

Oh yes, it is. Yesterday, it was not. Yesterday, we were in the 20s, then it just did a huge plummet overnight. When I woke up this morning, it was negative 22. Right now, it's negative nine.

Chloe Flagg (01:41):

Oh, good. Okay.

Emy Digrappa (01:42):

Yeah, everything changed overnight. It just took a dive.

Chloe Flagg (01:46):

No snow though still?

Emy Digrappa (01:48):

No. Snow would be warm. It can't snow when it's this cold. It's just you walk outside, and it's the worst sound. Crunch, crunch, crunch.

Lucas (01:59):

You don't like the crunch?

Emy Digrappa (02:00):

Not when it's the snow turned into ice overnight, so it's not fluffy or anything. It's just like...

Lucas (02:08):

You prefer soft, fluffy snow. I understand.

Emy Digrappa (02:13):

What do you prefer, Lucas?

Lucas (02:15):

I haven't thought about it too much. All I know is that if it's crunchy, it tends to be solid, so I don't usually have to dig myself out of anywhere. I can just walk on top.

Emy Digrappa (02:24):

That's fair.

Lucas (02:24):

That's something that I prefer.

Emy Digrappa (02:27):

Okay. I guess I prefer it to snow, because when it snows, it warms up and it's beautiful. Yes, you might get stuck, but I do prefer it actually.

Chloe Flagg (02:41):

Me too.

Emy Digrappa (02:42):

This is a historical moment because... What was it in Casper this morning? It was negative 45?

Lucas (02:48):

Something like that. I think I saw that this morning. Yeah, it is record breaking. I think that's the coldest they've ever recorded since they were recording.

Chloe Flagg (02:58):

It was negative 50 in Cheyenne this morning. They made national news.

Emy Digrappa (03:03):

No way. No way. Well, that's why I wanted to mention that in our podcast today, because this is a historical moment that we're living in. Hopefully, we'll all live through it. That's the most important part.

Chloe Flagg (03:17):

I know, for real. I hope everyone is staying as warm as they possibly can.

Lucas (03:23):

Speaking of heaters, I can hear the very intense sounds of a heater in the room next to me, because the heat's not on over there. Something's being thawed. So if you hear something akin to a small jet engine, that is what's going on. I am safe. Everyone's safe. I just wanted to be clear.

Emy Digrappa (03:48):

Really? You wonder, I mean, oh my gosh. I just have to say a prayer for all the people who are living in tents and on the streets. That this is just such a horrific thing to happen, especially during this time of year when people are already stressed out. It's such an interesting time of year because for some people, it's the best time of year and it's super happy. For others, it's not that.

Chloe Flagg (04:17):

It's true. Yesterday was the winter solstice. I've learned a little bit about it recently. Northern hemisphere cultures consider it a very dangerous day of the year, a dangerous night of the year. It's the longest night of the year. It's when it's the darkest for the longest. A lot of those Nordic cultures believe that it's when evil spirits play, so you have to be careful.

(04:45):

So, we kept a fire burning all night to keep them away. I don't know how much I prescribe to that sort of thing, but if a culture has decided that that is a possibility for hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of years, there might be something to it. We have a simmer pot on the stove. We got fire going. We're not messing around.

Lucas (05:09):

Honestly, there are worst excuses to do that, so all in. It does explain a lot, last night, I was walking home and our outside light went out. That helps guide my way, so it was super dark. It was just like a... And all the snow dunes, these drifts everywhere. It was scary.

Chloe Flagg (05:29):

What an ominous night. An ominous night for the winter solstice.

Lucas (05:34):

Would you believe it? They were horned larks making sounds that late, which is unusual. I didn't understand. What do you do? I don't know the life of a horned lark. Something was going on last night. We were having some sort of party somewhere.

Emy Digrappa (05:51):

No, he's crying. It's like, "I'm freezing. People, I'm freezing." I think it's just incredible that we take so much for granted. I was going to say two of my favorite holiday quotes, and I love this one by Mother Teresa. She says, "It's not how much we give, but how much love we put into giving." And then, this is a quote from The Polar Express.

Lucas (06:23):

I'm sorry. Yes, please.

Emy Digrappa (06:24):

"Seeing is believing, but sometimes the most real things in the world are the things we can't see."

Lucas (06:31):

Well, that's nice.

Chloe Flagg (06:31):

I love that.

Emy Digrappa (06:35):

I know. I do too. I remember when there was such a thing as a telephone instead of a cell phone. But actually, we did have a telephone, a landline when we lived out in Bondurant because our cell phone coverage was terrible. We just would make it a habit during the holiday season to answer the phone. It was really fun because we did that for a couple of years because we used to always watch the Elf movie.

Chloe Flagg (07:01):

That's sweet.

Emy Digrappa (07:02):

Yeah. We used to always... Oh, and we loved Christmas Vacation, watched that every year. We have all the Christmas movies. We watch them every year. It's really funny.

Chloe Flagg (07:12):

Yeah. This year has been especially fun because my daughter is three, and so she's really getting it now. She's understanding that Christmas is something we really look forward to, and she's understanding gift giving and obviously understands she's going to get gifts. She's very excited for Santa. Very excited.

(07:35):

But yeah, it's been so fun to watch some of my childhood favorite movies with her, even though she's still young for a lot of them, but it's been so fun. It's just a whole different perspective on Christmas. I feel like in my young adulthood, you become maybe, not jaded, but like, "It's Christmas again. I got to do this, I got to do that, I got to travel," all those things. But it's magical again. It's so magical again, and it's so fun. I'm loving it.

Lucas (08:06):

What qualifies as a holiday-themed movie, right?

Chloe Flagg (08:10):

Are you asking about Die Hard, Lucas?

Lucas (08:12):

That's [inaudible 00:08:13].

Chloe Flagg (08:13):

Is this a Die Hard question?

Lucas (08:14):

That's a great example, because it is important to this question. Is it the theme or is it the time of year the movie takes place? Or if you're really committed, the time of year the movie was filmed even. What qualifies a holiday slash Christmas movie?

Chloe Flagg (08:36):

I don't know about Emy, but I think for me, it's the spirit of the movie more than anything. Just because it takes place around Christmas or in December or whatever, does not mean, in my mind, that it's a Christmas movie. It has to have that spirit of Christmas.

Lucas (08:55):

Die Hard would count?

Chloe Flagg (08:57):

Maybe. I don't know. It's been so long since I've seen it. It's been too long.

Lucas (09:02):

There's nothing that follows the Christmas spirit closer than Die Hard. The first one, of course.

Chloe Flagg (09:11):

I'm going to have to disagree with you, Lucas.

Lucas (09:13):

You can, and that's totally allowed. I just truly believe this.

Emy Digrappa (09:19):

Well, I think... I mean, they're playing Christmas music all throughout it, right?

Chloe Flagg (09:25):

That is true. Yeah.

Emy Digrappa (09:27):

They're playing Christmas, and so it does have a Christmas theme because all this stuff is going on during the holidays, but it's not about Christmas. It is just taking place during that time, so it's all the music and the whole holiday thing is happening for people. But it's not like Charlie Brown's Christmas where...

Lucas (09:51):

But he's traveling through a bunch of vents. He's trapped in and around a Christmas-themed event. He's trapped there and he's calling to the vents. A perfect metaphor for dealing with so many people you often don't want to deal with this time of year, because you're trapped and you're crawling to the vents. You have make it fun because you have to, and you come up with cool phrases. I'm not going to say it in its entirety. Yippee Ki-Yay, and then the second part, right? I mean, I feel like it's a good metaphor. You're right, Emy, there is Christmas music going on. I mean, I think it couldn't be more obvious.

Emy Digrappa (10:36):

I don't know. You're pretty convincing there, Lucas. But still, it's not a movie about Christmas. It's a movie about Die Hard. That is the theme.

Chloe Flagg (10:50):

The plot of the movie could take place around any holiday or any gathering, right?

Lucas (10:55):

I don't know if it would work the same. It wouldn't feel the same.

Chloe Flagg (10:58):

See, I don't know. I don't know. It's been so long since I've seen it. Now, I have to watch it. Oh, okay.

Emy Digrappa (11:02):

No, that's it. We're all going to have to watch it. We're going to have this discussion again later.

Lucas (11:08):

I'm glad that we did this.

Emy Digrappa (11:10):

We're going to do a scorecard and rate all these things, and then, we'll compare our scores, and then, yeah. So, you have to have a scorecard from one to five, music, from one to five, story, from one to... You just have to have some kind of little metrics, and we'll see who comes out on top, Lucas. We'll see.

Chloe Flagg (11:30):

He's going to go 5, 5, 5, 5, 5.

Lucas (11:32):

It seems that I'm biased, but I will be totally-

Emy Digrappa (11:35):

I know. You are biased.

Lucas (11:36):

... totally objective and fair.

Emy Digrappa (11:40):

Okay. You're going to make the metrics. I think Lucas should actually, and then you can send it to me and Chloe, and we'll even post it online with our podcast.

Lucas (11:52):

Sure.

Emy Digrappa (11:54):

See, you just created a job. Anyway-

Lucas (11:58):

That wasn't the plan.

Emy Digrappa (11:58):

I know. I know.

Lucas (12:00):

That was not my intention.

Emy Digrappa (12:02):

We tripped you. We tricked you. But it only has to be three to five questions. Music, plot, message,

Lucas (12:12):

Just a good time. Honestly, I think the ultimate signifier here of movies or celebrations in general of any sort of holiday system that you go with is celebrating in a way that makes you feel relaxed, happy, comfortable, and with people, if you choose to be surrounded by people that you enjoy being with. We always give each other a hard time about it. But ultimately, we're doing this not because we have to, but because it truly finds peace in some capacity. I think that's the ultimate signifier of this time of year.

Emy Digrappa (12:44):

That's excellent. I love that you just said that because I think that people feel the holiday seasons are really stressful, starting at Thanksgiving, actually, all the way through the New Year's. They can be, but also, the reason I love the holidays is because it really makes you stop. It just makes you stop doing other things and spend time with your family when, if you just live in a world that doesn't celebrate anything, one day's the same as the next day. This way, we slow down, we get slow, and we stop being distracted. We start to just focus on friends and family and having a great time with people you love.

Chloe Flagg (13:32):

Totally. Certainly in our family, Christmas is whatever day we're together. I know some people are real staunch about December 25th, and that is Christmas and whatever. But for us, and especially in probably a lot of Wyoming nights, especially those that have to travel to see family understand that. It's whenever you can get together and be in the same space, because it's not always going to work out. The December 25th is the day. That's something I've always really enjoyed with our family, is that it's whenever we're together. Lucas, didn't your family celebrate Christmas early this year?

Lucas (14:12):

Yeah, the 17th.

Chloe Flagg (14:12):

Yeah. So, you were all together.

Lucas (14:17):

That's true. That's exactly why we did it too.

Emy Digrappa (14:19):

I think that's cool. Yeah, you're right, Chloe. I didn't think about it like that, that it's about the time being together. I was just more thinking about the whole world, whether it's Kwanzaa or whatever your holiday tradition is, it happens everywhere where people are celebrating something in this time of the year, whatever your holiday tradition is. It feels like it's happening everywhere, and that's amazing to me.

(14:51):

It does make the world slow down in a global way. I think that's really cool, and that's exactly why we're taking this holiday break from our podcast. We'll start up again in the new year. Our next episode will be the first Thursday in January.

Chloe Flagg (15:11):

Awesome.

Emy Digrappa (15:11):

I just want to thank our audience, our listeners, and everybody who's turned in to Winds of Change. Thank you so much for being a part of this journey that we're on.

Chloe Flagg (15:21):

Absolutely. Yeah, and I want to say that too. Thank you. Thank you. This is the first time I've ever done anything like this. Emy's a seasoned expert when it comes to podcasting, so luckily we have her guidance, but I'm grateful. It's fun. It's different and I'm really enjoying it. I'm learning a lot too, and I hope you are too as our listener, not just about us, as people, but about Wyoming and where we live and the things that make this such a great place to be. So, thank you.

Lucas (15:52):

Yeah, absolutely. Always a lot of fun doing this and looking forward to another year of exciting stories and laughs and hopefully a lot of great times. That was terrible, but the point-

Chloe Flagg (16:08):

Probably a lot of bird references too, I would imagine.

Lucas (16:10):

Yeah, right. A lot of the things with feathers will be mentioned several times. This is only the beginning.

Emy Digrappa (16:17):

Thanks, Lucas. But as our resident historian, I think what I'm looking forward to in the new year is that we're going to learn a lot more about Wyoming history.

Lucas (16:28):

Right, of course. Yes, absolutely. I'll just leave a note here for myself to do the history thing. Absolutely. It's going to be great.

Emy Digrappa (16:39):

Oh my gosh. Okay. You need to go drink some coffee.

Lucas (16:44):

You might be right.

Emy Digrappa (16:46):

Or some eggnog. You're not having enough eggnog right now. Those are the holiday drinks and-

Lucas (16:54):

Coffee and eggnog, specifically those two things.

Emy Digrappa (16:57):

Or rum in your coffee or, let's see, hot toddies.

Lucas (17:04):

Yeah, my mom likes those.

Emy Digrappa (17:11):

We already knew that, Lucas. We knew that. That's why we love your mom.

Lucas (17:16):

Yeah, my mom's pretty cool.

Emy Digrappa (17:18):

Anyway, Merry Christmas to our audience, and Happy New Year. I can't wait till we come back around again, and we hope everyone stays warm.

Chloe Flagg (17:28):

Have a wonderful holiday.

Lucas (17:30):

Have a good one.

Emy Digrappa (17:37):

Thank you for listening. I'm executive producer, Emy Digrappa. Winds of Change is brought to you by Wyoming Humanities, our co-hosts, and all the people who generously share their stories and their time. For more information, go to thinkwy.org. Subscribe and never miss a show.