Sunday, December 05, 2010

First Snow Follies.

So yesterday was the first real snow of the season. It started late Friday night and dribbled down through most of the morning on Saturday. Although I understand it was deeper off in the southwest corner of the state, we didn't get much here in the Circle City; about three inches of wet stuff that was pretty halfhearted about sticking to pavement. That didn't stop people celebrating in the traditional fashion, by sliding into ditches and backing into interstate median dividers at speed.

The TeeWee showed an Indy citizen eagerly using his snowblower on the sidewalk in front of his house. A snowblower! For three inches of snow! I used a broom on the first inch-and-a-half and salted the walk to scare off the rest.

It got cold last night, the roads all froze, and I woke up to the news that I-74 west of town was closed for three hours by an 18-wheeler that had performed an inverted Swan Lake all across the travel lanes.

Also, some good ol' boy celebrated the upcoming anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition by drinking a whole bunch of beer on Friday, stumbling around his yard, answering his kinfolk's pleas to come inside with slurred negatories, slumping down to sleep in a lawn chair, and freezing to death overnight.

It's the holiday season in Hoosierville!

24 comments:

Tango Juliet said...

Woohoo!! I love winter.

Well, sort of.

Standard Mischief said...

>A snowblower! For three inches of snow!

Personally, I wait until my yard is a foot high in the spring before I check to see if the mower still starts on the first pull ;-)

Tam said...

Standard Mischief,

I could have had it swept off with a kitchen broom in the time it took him to drag out the 'blower and get it cranked up.

I do understand the urge to play with expensive techno-toys, though. :)

Silver the Evil Chao said...

WUSSIES! They should come to Grand Forks sometime... ;)

Tam said...

Why? Is y'all's black ice less slippery? ;)

Robert said...

And yet, all I hear about down here in the south, when it snows, is about how all the yankees are so expert at driving in snow...

Tam said...

Driving in snow is easy when it's all been plowed off the well-salted road. ;)

Driving on ice? If you don't have the right tires on the car I don't care where you live, the only difference between Yankees and Americans is that the former say "Oh, crap, you guys!" instead of "Oh, crap, y'all!" when they spin into the ditch...

Standard Mischief said...

(grown-up toys, not to be confused with adult toys ;-)

If it's anything like a lawnmower, it goes like this:

1. Think "Wow, snow."
2. Think "Hey, I never stored the snow thrower properly at the end of the last season. Is the fickle fate of Al Gore going to hit us this year too?"
3. Think "Gee, it's Saturday, I can get to the hardware store."
4. Go to hardware store for new spark plug.
5. Drain old gas. Save for bonfire.
6. Clean varnish from gas tank with carb cleaner. Drop the bowl of the carb and clean that too.
7. Wash and re-oil air filter, spray carb cleaner into the carb.
8. Install new spark plug.
9. Start the engine on fresh gas.
10. Do the $1.98 tune-up while the air filter is off.
11. Install filter.
12. Say "What the heck." Clear the driveway and sidewalk while warming up the engine for the oil change you forgot to do back in February.
13. (optional) Resolve to keep a head gasket and a spare flywheel key on-hand, but forget to order them.

Lergnom said...

The winter of '94 was especially bad in Philly, with something winterish coming down an everage of every five days. That was the winter I had tire chains on my car for three months. I used so much rock salt, it ruined my pvement and I had to have it replaced. Now I use one of those big outdoor pushbrooms while it's still coming down, and throw the calcium ice-melter to save the new walk.
Stay safe

Ruth said...

At least they CLOSED the highway by you. By me they left it open till it was full of 100's of cars stuck in two feet of snow...

@Robert, the majority of us DO know how to drive in snow ever so much better than you southern folks, but every year a large percentage has to be reminded they are not invincible! I hate having to drive in snow till at least 3 or 4 good storms into the season just because I cant stand to share the roads with them.

Anonymous said...

"...the majority of us (yankees) DO know how to drive in snow ever so much better than you southern folks..."

Odd, because ya'll don't know how to drive worth a FUCK on flat, straight, dry FLA roads...

AT

Tam said...

ZING! :D

Matt G said...

Al for the win.

Nathan said...

"Odd, because ya'll don't know how to drive worth a FUCK on flat, straight, dry FLA roads..."

Even odder, seems like every time I'm down there it's the people with Florida plates who are doing the stupid shit, speeding, weaving in and out of traffic, ending up in the giggleweeds as alligator bait...

Of course, I suppose those could be rentals. Me, I drive the speed limit and drive like I have intelligence. And one does have to look out for those snowbirds, because they sure as hell aren't looking out for you.

Anonymous said...

Here in Houston (snow? Is that one of those legends we hear about, like the tooth fairy or honest politicians?) nobody knows how to drive in the once-in-a-generation ice or snow storms, but when it rains and the streets are super slick from the mixture of road oil (asphalt roads are king!!) and water everybody thinks that means "drive faster and tailgate!

cap'n chumbucket

Joanna said...

when it rains and the streets are super slick from the mixture of road oil (asphalt roads are king!!) and water everybody thinks that means "drive faster and tailgate!

Up here, it's all that plus "Why should I put my headlights on? I can see ... "

And for some reason it's mostly the grey, white and black cars that do this. You know, the ones the same color as the rain.

Tam said...

Joanna,

Yeah, I don't get that either.

I mean, I drive a small, low, silver car. If the weather is anything other than severe clear and broad daylight, I turn on my lights because I thing the texting, cell-phoning, munchkin-swatting, GPS-watching idiots around me need all the help they can get to notice me.

I've thought about installing a strobe on the roof...

Silver the Evil Chao said...

@Tam: It's because people would stop freaking out about snow and ice if they spent some time up here. xD

Tam said...

Silver,

Nobody's freaking out about it. It happens every year right about this time.

The big difference between someplace like Indy and points farther north is that here the ground is rarely snow-covered for much more than a week at a lick.

Buffalo, NY gets more snow than anyplace on the plains, and they always celebrate the first one by driving into ditches, too... ;)

Anonymous said...

Many folks in Buffalo have the good sense to invest in 'winter cars'. The kind that (almost) always start, run on good (or cheap retread) snowtires and won't be ruined by yet another dent.

No one drives well on ice. But I will admit that some of the most impressive BAD driving on ice I've ever seen was in in Austin TX, mid-90's. Their unofficial town motto of "Keep Austin Weird" didn't need much help that day.

Texascarl

Ian Argent said...

You know what got me a good dose of schadenfreude back in the day? Driving a 2WD ranger on snow or sleet (or roughened ice) past a yuppie who had the greasy side up on his SUV due to forgetting the simple rule - 4WD gets you going, but the Good Lord only knows where you'll stop.

Driving slooowly past that yuppie, mind, with a gentle hand on the steering wheel and a hundred pounds of sand in the bed aft of the wheel wells. I was crazy, not stupid.

This was a lot more common in the greater DC area than in Jersey, mind you. Two snowflakes hit anywhere on the beltway and it's a cue for all the SUV drivers to hit the ditch. Not quite so bad in NJ, which is odd because we don't get any much worse snow (and in fact the DC area tends to come off worse when the really bad snows come up the I-95 corridor)

Anonymous said...

"Me, I drive the speed limit and drive like I have intelligence."

Dude, that was you doing the lawful 55 limit and bottlenecking the left lane while the right two lanes zoomed around and past you at 70?

Doesn't seem that intelligent. Get outa the WAY, man!

AT

Tam said...

AT,

"Dude, that was you doing the lawful 55 limit and bottlenecking the left lane..."

BZZZT!

He said he drove with intelligence.

Look for your Left-Lane Bandit elsewhere...

Anonymous said...

Nope, he said he drives the speed limit, and drives like he has intelligence.

Non-sequitur.

AT