Saturday, May 20, 2017

Living Fahrenheit in a Centigrade World

May 20

I’m in the center of my little
world this Saturday morning,
sipping coffee, watching tv news,
reading news on my laptop, and
sitting here, writing this.
It’s 52 F outside and the rain
has moved on to the north.
If I say it’s 11 C outside, that
sounds so much colder.
I try to mentally calculate
Fahrenheit to Centigrade,
and wonder if anyone is calculating
the reverse in another country.
You know, someone
living in a Centigrade world
calculating what the temperature
must be in a Fahrenheit world.
I’ve got a few reference points in the
conversion, in that 82 F = 28 C.
I like the number swap mnemonic.
The boiling point at sea level
is 100 C. Water freezes at 0 C.
The conversion formula is:
°C x 9/5 + 32 = °F;
(°F - 32) x 5/9 = °C.
But for me, temperature
has not been internalized
so that I walk outdoors and think,
it must be 25 C out here.
I do walk outdoors and
think, it must be 82 F out here.
To get to Centigrade,
the warmth or coldness
of the air must be processed
intellectually. And I absolutely,
don’t think in Kelvin at all.


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