The Funny Thing about Winter

If you are anywhere in the northeast, you probably want to hit me for suggesting there is anything remotely funny about this winter. 80 inches of snow, below zero temperatures, the wind, the MBTA problems in Boston… Enough you say – bring on Spring!!!

Yeah, yeah, we’ll get there. In the meantime since we are here, now, and there isn’t really anywhere to go (unless you are heading out on your winter vacation), let’s discuss what nine to twelve foot snow banks can teach us.

Number one: Be prepared. Meaning don’t run around like a headless chicken buying gallons and gallons of milk and 17 loaves of bread. You won’t be shuttered away in your home for three weeks. Not unless we get 14,000 inches of snow at once. You are surely wise to have extra supplies –  sweetie pie calls it ‘storm food’ and it always includes Oreos! – some extra batteries, a good radio (for weather and Zombie updates) and alternate power preparations if case the power goes out. Nothing beats good preparation. Except a nice juicy steak. Which is why I always shovel out my grill.

Number two: Relax. The snow storms we’ve seen in the past three weeks have been slow movers, hanging around a day or two to bury us in the white stuff. There is no need to elevate your blood pressure by panicking; plenty of other people will do that for you. Be the calm, cool, collected, rational person in the store and on the street. Snow storms draw out the nutty-heads already, we don’t need any more. Be like the wind and (wait for it!) chill…..

Number three: Be smart. I am bad at this one because I have a big 4WD truck. It’s hard to sit home while the storm rages; actually it is pretty easy.  But I am an explorer at heart – I want to see what is happening out there, especially down at the beach where you can see a very, very angry ocean. Even as hypocritical as it may be, if the governor asks you to stay off the roads, stay off the roads. Especially if you are driving a little car with no weight and six inches of ground clearance. I’ve pulled a few cars out of snow banks over the past weeks and some of them have sustained damage; apparently snow that falls in 10 degree weather is light and fluffy until you hit a pile of it that has mixed with road salt and frozen into chunks.

So there you go, three hot tips, pun intended, for winter survival. So where’s the funny part, you ask? Simple: its winter, it happens every year. Sure most years are not like this one, but the general principles apply: It’s cold, it snows, and it’s windy. That may not have changed since the ice age and back then it was worse! And every big storm, I mean EVERY big storm brings out behavior that is directly contrary to what I’ve written above. People panicking, doing stupid things and cleaning the grocery store out of food that they will never be able to eat before it spoils.

I’ve seen this is SatCom as well. Hurricane season will be here soon, and yet people will not make good decisions to ensure they have satellite phones. Nope, they’d rather roll the dice and then call us as the storm bears down on them. Been there. Done that. Bad planning.

At least spring will be here and the snow will melt. Certainly by June.

Thanks for reading.