December 19, 2009


As you may know, there's a blizzard going on across the east coast. With about 12 inches down, snow still falling and predictions of at least 20 inches to come. In the DC metro area, it looks sort of like this outside... But as far as people are concerned it might as well look like this... **********************************************************************************Full on panic and chaos has set in. This is nothing new for this area. All my life panic is how the reaction to snow goes. Yet, we never seemed to get that many snow days off from school I remember. In other counties if someone spit on the road and it froze over night, they'd shut school down for a week. But not in my school district. But the panic always happens which causes a mad dash/feeding frenzy at the grocery store. As people buy bread, milk, water and toilet paper as if they've stop making them. Some people start filling up sinks and bath tubs with water, etc. It's mind boggling. The very worst storm I went through we had 4-5feet on the ground and no electricity and we managed for 3 days to keep ourselves warm, fed, and entertained until the lights came back on and we could get down our street. So, it's never as bad as it seems. But this all goes hand in hand with the worst drivers in snow on the planet. Who either drive slow enough to move backwards through time, or drive like the starting gun has just gone off at the Indy 500. Which brings me to my story from last night. I was on my way home in my "mach 5" and the snow had been coming down for about 2 hours... I had just had a nice steakhouse dinner with family but seeing how the snow had started (and knowing the chaos it would bring) I got on the road at 9pm to avoid the madness. I drove 40 mins through some very heavy traffic roads and highways with no problems. It was coming down but the roads were wet and not really sticking yet. I'm within two miles of home when I decide to stop at the store to pick up some snacks. Knowing that since they were predicting a foot or more of snow that I would be hunkered down at home all day today---so some to snack on would be nice. It's close to 10pm by now and the 24 hour grocery is busy with people doing the same as me. I'm in the store for maybe 20 mins thanks to the long lines so when I get out the snow now is actually sticking to the road and my car has a thin layer on it. No biggie. When I pull out of my space onto the road I can feel the car shimmy and fishtail a bit. So, I put it in low gear and head home. Everyone is going slow which is fine because there are some hills with traffic lights and nobody wants to be hit. I'm at the last traffic light before turning into my building's underground parking. The light turns green and the only car in my on coming traffic that I have to worry about is a football field away. This turn is again on a downward hill so to avoid a spin out I'm turning slowly in low gear. But apparently, once the light turned green the driver of the oncoming car thinks the checkered flag at the Indy 500 is being waved and he goes from being a football field away to warp speed with headlights in my face when I'm in the middle of my turn---and he has no plans to slow down to avoid slamming into me. Granted he needs some momentum to get him up the hill but at the speed he's going he could push my car up the hill while he's at it. So I floor it and swerve across my street just in time to avoid being clipped by this jackass. I managed to keep my car under control and avoid the parked cars on the side of the road while cursing him up and down. He---I'm sure---has no clue of what almost happened and is probably lying upside down in his flipped over car in a ditch somewhere but, last night night drove safely past me and right up the hill, no problem. Friggin moron. Anyway, just a friendly reminder from me to you, even if you know how to drive in the snow be careful of the idiots out there who don't. And if you're an idiot who doesn't know how to drive---learn---because until then you have no business being on the road when there's snow on the ground. Anyway, whoever's reading this, whether you're on the east coast and snowed in or some place nice and tropical.....everybody stay warm and toasty and enjoy your weekend. :)

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