• Nora Goodin

Why the Vernal Equinox is the Worst Change of Seasons



Everyone has a favorite season. Some, like me, love the feeling of freedom that summer evokes. Others enjoy the spirit of fall or the happiness that winter brings. Rarely, however, does one ask someone their favorite season and receive “spring” as a reply. Sure, people can like spring, but, in my experience, it doesn’t have nearly as much support as the other, superior seasons. I especially notice this apathy during the annual vernal equinox, which, in contrast to the summer and winter solstices and the autumnal equinox, is hardly recognized by the general public. Let’s explore why this tendency might be.

Frankly, the vernal equinox is boring. It doesn’t have an impressive superlative attached to it, like the winter and summer solstice, which are the shortest and longest days of the year, respectively. On June 21, everyone relishes in the lasting daylight that remains late into the evening. It’s a day to sit out on the porch eating dinner with friends and celebrating the commencement of a break from school. Conversely, December 21 is the perfect day to cozy up inside as the sun sets early, drink hot chocolate and spend time with family. What is March 20 for? Going to bed at a reasonable hour? It’s just not the same.

Now, you might be thinking that the same argument could be made for the autumnal equinox, which will be on September 22 this year. However, the autumnal equinox has many other redeeming qualities with which the vernal equinox simply can’t compete. For instance, the transition from the dog days of summer to the beginning of the school year gives students hope for a fresh start. By March, most of these hopes have been dashed by the harsh realities of the school year. The vernal equinox simply serves as a reminder that the school year is continuing into yet another long season.

Finally, spring weather is simultaneously the most sporadic yet underwhelming climate possible. Every other change of seasons brings the possibility for new, fun weather patterns: the summer solstice ushers in a time of warmth, the autumnal equinox brings with it a brisk chill in the air, and with the winter solstice come hopes for snow days. The vernal equinox might bring an increase in temperature of a couple of degrees, or a 50% chance of rain, but that’s about it. I don’t look forward to spring weather; I just look forward to getting through it.

As I’ve stated, I cannot get behind the transition from winter to spring, but if you can see past these pitfalls and still call spring your favorite season, and even enjoy the vernal equinox, then I respect that. Even I recognize that it has to become spring in order for it to become summer, the objectively best season.