Insane / Nuts / Loony

…that would be our Brit Cousins, who yesterday celebrated Boxing Day not by sitting by a warm fire eating crumpets etc., oh no.  Apparently, the Boxing Day “tradition” Over There is to freeze your appendages off in this manner:


To quote Obelix:  “These Britons are crazy.”

Made certain parts of me shrink just by looking at ’em.


  1. The “L street Brownies” do this madness here in Boston on New Years Day. The world is full of loonies.

  2. The water around the northeast usually is coldest in March or so.

    I’ll take a warm fireplace over a cold trip into the ocean any day of the week.


  3. The water and air around the British Isles are warmed by the Gulf Stream, so it’s not quite as frigid as you might think. But there are people that swim in even colder conditions. In Traverse City, Michigan, back in the 1970’s there was the Polar Bear Club. They chopped a hole in the ice of Grand Traverse Bay to go swimming in December or January. The water was just above freezing, and the air was certainly below freezing, although moderated somewhat by blowing over northern Lake Michigan. AFAIK, they stopped doing this when the lake froze over entirely in February, and Traverse City weather changed from around 20 F and huge masses of snow to around 0 F and little snow… Grand Traverse Bay in summer was cold enough for me.

    It would be possible to find even colder conditions on some northern sea coasts – the salt lowers the freezing point of sea water a few degrees, and it’s much colder when the wind is from a frozen land mass rather than from over open water – but I don’t know of anyone crazy enough to swim in those conditions.

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