- Informal. restless or frantic because of confinement, routine, etc.: I was stir-crazy after just two months of keeping house.
- mentally ill because of long imprisonment.
I’d like to think the first definition is most appropriate to my situation. This brief period (it’s been just 24 hours or so) of being house-bound due to ice and broken tree limbs and spotty power outages cannot be equivalent to a long imprisonment, nor can the fact that I feel a little like challenging Nature to a duel be evidence of mental illness.
Speaking of stir, it has heretofore been my understanding that the concept of “stir-crazy” arose from the irrational behaviors that sprang from spending time in prison, or “stir.” The online definitions I’ve found thus far do not include, even informally, a definition of “stir” as a noun meaning prison.
This weather that has made me a prisoner in my own home/neighborhood has given rise to wishful thinking about places in which such weather would be unlikely. Earlier this morning, my sister-in-law and I discussed such places. Santa Rosa, California. McMinnville, Oregon. The Weather Channel says the average December low for McMinnville is 34; for Santa Rosa, the average December low is 39. Those are tolerable. But so is the average low for December in Dallas; The Weather Channel says the average December low is 39. They lie! It’s 21 degrees here! How could we possibly be so far below our average low?!
Hmm. So, just now, I checked the weather for Santa Rosa. The temperature there is 32. Tonight’s low is forecast to be 25. Then I checked McMinnville. The temperature there is 21 degrees and tonight’s low is forecast to be 15.
As I look out the window, I see trees glazed with ice. I see a white roof, and another, and another. I see streets coated with ice and sleet and refrozen slush. And I see evidence all around me of a conspiracy to keep me indoors. Early Winter is conspiring with Nature, along with the U.S. Office of Weather Control, to imprison me in my own home! I have news for them! Today, I will break free! It may be for only 15 minutes, but today I will taste freezedom!