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Friday, January 28, 2011


Today, following another major snowfall I went outside with a yardstick and measured: we had a ZILLION INCHES OF SNOW! It is the first time in history that a zillion inches have been recorded. It was another nor’easter. It seems like no matter where I happen to be, the weather sucks. We went to Florida last year, and what did we get? A sou’easter. We are going to Texas this year, where I expect to be hit by a mi’wester, and on the way, a sou’sou’easter.

The snow seems pretty at first. It’s a winter wonderland of pristine white until the dog turns half the yard yellow like an old tee shirt. Here in the Northeast we spend insane amounts of time and money to clear things away that fall on the ground. I just got through raking up the last leaf from autumn, and I turn around and the entire place is covered in snow. I heard that New York City blew half its snow removal budget on that one storm after Christmas.

The worst part of any major storm is the Mayor’s press conference. You’re just sitting down to watch Judge Judy and the dopey local news breaks away to Mayor Bloomberg. First of all, the lowest a microphone stand can go is about 4 feet, which lands the microphone straight at Bloomberg’s forehead. So he nasally twangs statements like, “We have the finest people in the business in charge of keeping New York’s streets clear and safe!,” and, “If you don’t absolutely have to be somewhere, stay home!” He twangs exactly the same nuggets every single time, and for that I have to miss Judge Judy. Apparently the same guys who pick up the garbage are the ones that remove the snow, so you have to put all your snow in plastic bags, and separate the ice in different bags since it is recyclable.

Bloomberg queries, “Are we going to get to everyone all of the time?” Before I can say, “I don’t think there’s a chance in hell of you doing that…,” he chirps, “NO!” “Are we going to make mistakes?” I start to answer, “Well, we ALL make mistakes, and I think-“ when he yells, “YES!” If he knows these answers ahead of time I fail to see why he asks us.

Not to mention that he is still backtracking after getting lambasted about the poor response that first snowstorm, where everyone learned what the word “tertiary” meant (it means any road in Staten Island). Now I use it in Scrabble all the time, and it gives me a fresh chance to skewer Mayor Bloomberg about not plowing our driveway.

We have to hire our own plow guy to come every time it snows because our driveway is so steep. The old plow guy quit because it was annoying to get up our driveway with all that snow there. The new guy plows a perfect half inch of ice from top to bottom, like a luge course. If my car doesn’t make it all the way up, it slides backwards back down to the street, bouncing off the snowbanks like a pinball. So I go out there and salt it even though I am supposed to be cutting down. My wife wants to get one of those electric heaters that sits underneath the pavement, so we can just move the TV out there and hang out.

Even if you got sick of all the snow and leaves falling, where would you move to? A lot of people move to Florida, where snow and leaves don’t fall as often as the property values do. Plus every year you have to board up your windows with plywood while the hurricanes blow through. The Midwest has tornadoes, and way too much corn. You would still need a plow guy to get all that frigging corn out of your driveway. Plus you will pull your hair out trying to find a decent pizza. The West has earthquakes and wildfires, and a much higher proportion of weirdos. Yes, you could move out of the country, if you could only get down your driveway.

At least the weather forecasting is much better than it used to be. Just before this last storm, meteorologists correctly predicted the time that it would begin, approximately how much snow we would get, and that the Steelers would not cover. Oddly enough, they can’t seem to tell you one damn thing about meteors.

Incidentally, There are several theories as to why we are experiencing higher snow totals this year. One is that since the polar ice caps are melting, less cold air is reflected into space, thus affecting the cold air patterns. Experts liken it to leaving the refrigerator open, so that the food inside gets warmer while the rest of the house gets colder. By the way, I notice that you are almost out of beer. Another theory holds that the warmer Arctic has resulted in more snow in Siberia and the surrounding mountain ranges, thus “bending” the jetstream further south. Still, no one has been able to explain to me why Iceland is so green, and Greenland is full of ice, other than that somebody left the fridge open.

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