"You live in Minnesota?" Yep. "That's where they test batteries and plug in their cars, right?" Yes and no. After breaking my ankle on ice, I have a better understanding of why so many people flee to Fort Myers and Scottsdale.

Yes, the cold is annoying. Like the eccentric uncle who shouts and uses all-caps in his e-mails. But it's the threat of debilitating injury from falling that spooks so many people.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 3 older Americans fall every year. One in 5 falls lead to serious injury. That amounts to $34 billion in fall-related mishaps annually. It's not the cold, it's the ice! I get it now.

A brief, concentrated surge of polar air will keep us below zero from roughly midnight Friday into Monday morning. Windchills may dip to minus 35 Sunday. Take it easy out there.

Today will feel like a bad vacation as the mercury goes toward 30; the approach of battery-draining air may set off a whopping inch of snow on Friday. After a numbing weekend we return to "average" most of next week with a welcome thaw the last week of January. Hang in there — this too shall pass.