Well it seems that the great winter storm we had a few weeks ago wasn’t nearly as great as they thought. Enter “Winter Storm Linus”. Yes, now the National Weather Service is naming storms after Peanuts characters. If they had to go with a Peanuts character to name a storm, why not go with “Pig Pen” or “Peppermint Patty”? Naming your big winter storm after the safety blanket toting 7-year old that believes in the Great Pumpkin and more than likely wets his bed still just doesn’t seem to fit the mood of a torrential dumping of snow followed by blizzard-like winds and below zero temps. But hey, I’m not a meteorologist. Maybe they root for the little guy or something.
So yeah, we here in Northeast Indiana are in the midst of “the big one” as they say. It was first predicted we were looking at 5 to 8 inches of snow. That was bumped up to 8 to 10 inches. By yesterday morning we were looking at 12 inches of snow. Now we’re in the 10 to 15 inches range. I woke up this morning to snow falling but nothing to slice your Taun Taun open and crawl inside for. I guess it’s just getting a late start. The good stuff is getting started later this afternoon and evening. Granted, what happened on the East Coast last week makes what’s happening right now in my backyard look like a light dusting at most, but with the winds we’re supposed to get it’s going to get pretty ugly.
We’ve had our fair share of nasty winter weather here in the Midwest. The one everyone still talks about is the Great Blizzard of 1978. It was this massive storm that covered from Minnesota to the Ohio Valley. South Bend, Indiana recorded the highest amount of snowfall at 36 inches. South Bend is an hour west of us. In January of 1978 I was 4 years old, so my recollections are mainly from the polaroids of my brother playing on 6 foot piles of snow along our driveway; or of the drifts of snow that made their way onto the neighbor’s roof.
It was like nothing I’ve ever experienced that I can’t remember because I was too young.
Throughout my formative years we had all kinds of winter storms. I can remember one year the temperature had dropped down to -50 degrees with the wind chill. When I was 16 years old one of my buddies and I were snowed in at my house with my oldest brother and his girlfriend while my parents drunkenly made their way back from Indianapolis after a Colts game. There were also plenty of missed school days because of snow here. I can remember once when I was 17 we missed school due to snow, yet my best friend still made it over to my house and we drove around town filling vending machines for his dad(it was a side business his dad and stepmom had…one of many.)
Of course, a year ago we dealt with some major snow on two or three occasions in a three week time frame. Last year was the first time ever in the 15 years I’ve worked at my place of employment that they called off work because of snow. That’s uncalled for, especially in my line of work. Time is money, people. No pussyfootin’ around. We’re like the freakin’ postal service. Not rain, sleet, snow, or zombie apocalypse is going to stop us from running the machines and making the medical nuts and bolts. So when I called the work number and heard our plant was shut down I knew shit had gotten crazy. I believe last winter was the first I’d heard of the “polar vortex”. It sounds menacing(a hell of a lot more menacing that ‘Winter Storm Linus’.) It sounds like something that should be said by Samuel Jackson playing a scientist in some lousy sci- fi film. “What is it?! What is it?! It’s the Polar Vortex, bitch!! And that shit is gonna frost bite yo ass!!”
I need to get this idea to Uwe Boll, stat!
Okay, so I’m sure those of you that don’t get to experience polar vortexes and winter storm Linus’ are wondering what us folks that do experience the heavy snow, what we do on these days? Well, the biggest thing we do is shovel driveways, front porches, back stoops, and for those of us that have four-legged pals we shovel poop and pee paths in the backyard. Lots of coffee is consumed, Netflix is watched, beer is gulped(once in a while), and those tasks you normally never find time to do are considered. Maybe some people bake something, I don’t know. Me, well I’m currently enjoying my first cup of French Roast and listening to Fripp/Eno’s No Pussyfooting’. Spinning tunes will be a lot of my day. I plan on working on some music as well. And do some writing. Oh yeah, today is the Super Bowl. Well I don’t plan on watching that, and not just because I don’t have satellite television. Even if I did I wouldn’t succumb to Super Bowl ads, halftime shows, and munchies with gobs of melted cheese and cold Miller Lite. That’s not my scene. I get the fandom and the rooting and the memorizing of the player stats. Being an obsessive fan and highly knowledgeable about what you love I totally get. But my fandom lies in music, film, and….well mostly music.
No, we’ll be sticking to shoveling snow, drinking coffee, and making strange noises in the beat lab. And probably watching lots of shots of weather radars.
So this is what a day in the life of Winter Storm Linus looks like. Or sounds like. Or maybe just reads like. The Polar Linus Vortex is upon us. Time to refill my coffee cup and flip the record.