We like bringing Frosty the Snowman back to our Eco-Maven column of December because he smartly shares interesting stories and always welcomes us with open arms! This year is no exception, especially with the latest report about melting glaciers and its effects in the next pandemic.
1) What’s your name?
I know this is a standard question, but don’t you recognize, me? I’m Frosty the Snowman!
2) How old are you Frosty?
Well, I was created on December 7, 1969, so I’m only 50 years old. I don’t look that old, do I? Did I mention before that I was in the movies?
3) Can you tell us about your first movie?
Well, it was released in 1969, just in time for Christmas. So, the story goes like this…
… a discarded magic top hat brings to life the snowman that a group of children made until a magician, Professor Hinkle, wants it back, and the temperature starts to rise. Frosty will melt or no longer be a jolly soul if the kids cannot get him away from Hinkle and the warm weather, so he hops a train to the North Pole with young Karen.
4) Who else was in the movie with you?
Let me think. Well, Professor Hinkle and Karen, I already mentioned, then there was the Traffic Cop, the Teacher. Who am I forgetting? Oh yes, Santa Claus. How could I forget Santa Claus!
5) Do you see Santa Claus very often?
No, only at Christmas. He keeps himself to himself the rest of the time. I expect him to be very busy all year-round making toys for children.
6) What about the reindeer?
Oh, that Rudolf is always prancing about. You can’t miss him with that big red nose.
7) Do you stay at the North Pole all the time now?
I do, but nowadays, it’s not only getting warmer, but people also say it’s going to melt. I hear that if the ice melts as predicted, it is possible that viruses and bacteria locked in glaciers could reawaken and infect wildlife. Can you imagine?
8) What’s the temperature there?
Well, it’s usually around 32 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer, but in the winter, it goes down to -40 degrees, perfect for us snowmen!!
9) When would you begin melting?
If the surface temperature goes above 32 degrees, then it’s a problem. So, as you can imagine, the summer temperatures make me a little nervous.
10) Are you worried that it’s getting warmer?
Yes, there’s always been a lot of temperature fluctuations here in the Arctic because of the polar vortex – the circle of winds – up and down, up and down. We’re used to that, but lately, the ups are higher, and the downs are lower. But if, on top of that, there’s a risk that as global temperatures rise due to climate change, viruses and bacteria locked up in glaciers and permafrost could likely reawaken and infect local wildlife, I’m toast. I read that in The Guardian. As you know, us snowmen don’t like the heat. We would rather be freezing all the time!
11) Well, on another note, how are the polar bears doing?
Not too good. In Greenland, for instance, there have recently been three years of extreme melting in 2010, 2012, and 2016. This past September in Greenland saw record high temperatures, melt extent, and ice loss. So, the poor polar bears have to search for food inland. Well, people are pretty afraid of polar bears, so they sometimes kill them. It’s very sad.
12) So, what do you eat Frosty?
Don’t be silly. I’m a snowman. I don’t need to eat. That’s a big reason why neither animals nor people are afraid of snowmen.
13) How many fingers do you have Frosty?
That’s a very interesting question. I have four fingers, but when I count to five, I have five fingers…magic of the movies, really.
14) Where else would you like to live?
Well, maybe the South Pole. It’s a lot colder there.
15) Why is that?
Well, the South Pole sits on top of a very thick ice sheet, which itself sits on a continent. The ice sheet’s surface is more than a mile and a half above sea level. I think even snowmen would shiver there!
16) Wow, that sounds cold. Can anyone live there?
No people or polar bears, just plants and a few animals like penguins, seals, nematodes, tardigrades, and mice. Oh, on second thought, forget it; I’d be very lonely living there.
17) Let’s go back to the song “Frosty the Snowman” it was written in 1950, but you weren’t created then, were you?
No, it was written about my big brother Frosty… but he wasn’t cute enough for the movies!
18) Can you remember the words to the song “Frosty the Snowman”?
Of course, I can, let me sing it for you!
Frosty the Snowman, was a jolly happy soul,
With a corncob pipe and a button nose, and two eyes made of coal.
Frosty the Snowman, is a fairytale, they say.
He was made of snow, but the children know he came to life one day.
There must have been some magic in that old silk hat they found,
For when they placed it on his head, he began to dance around!
Oh, Frosty, the Snowman, was alive as he could be;
and the children say he could laugh and play,
just the same as you and me.
Thumpety thump, thump, thumpety thump, thump,
look at Frosty go.
Thumpety thump, thump, thumpety thump, thump,
over the hills of snow.
Frosty the Snowman, knew the sun was hot that day,
so he said, “Let’s run, and we’ll have some fun now, before I melt away.”
Down to the village, with a broomstick in his hand,
Running here and there, all around the square,
sayin’, “Catch me if you can.”
He led them down the streets of town, right to the traffic cop;
and only paused a moment when he heard him holler, “Stop!”
For Frosty, the Snowman, had to hurry on his way,
But he waved goodbye, sayin’ “Don’t cry, I’ll be back again someday.”