This morning, before I even had my first cup of coffee, I was outside shoveling and cleaning off cars again. And, once again, I left work early last night on account o’ the bullshit. It snows almost daily, and I am well and completely sick of it. That pic is the street in front of our house. It’s looked like that, more or less, for a month or more. It’s maddening.
It’s also very cold. The current temperature is 28 here, which is better than it has been. When I leave work most nights my car tells me it’s 8 or 14, and I have to YANK on my door to break the ice seal and get inside. I’m probably going to need Tommy John surgery before spring, because of all the amplified door yanking.
Winter before last I drove home in a hell storm and got trapped on Interstate 81 for a long time. It was excruciating. And the younger boy and I drove back from Philadelphia that same winter, after seeing a show, through one of the most nerve-racking, scary-ass snowstorms of them all. And I’ve driven through many of them. But no more. I decided, after those two events, that I’m not doing it anymore. I’m not risking it. I used to risk it, and felt an obligation to do so. But I reached a point where I said, “Nope, I’ve done my time. I did my three hundred sphincter-clinchers, and now it’s somebody else’s turn.” So, I stay home or leave early. Like I did last night. I feel like my obligation was met long ago.
I know there’s bad weather all over the place this winter. Please bring us up to date on your situation, wherever you happen to be. Use the comments section. And I hope you’re safe, and have electricity and water, etc.
The good news: Spring Training is underway. That’s a sure sign that warmer weather is on the way. Just think: in just a few short months I’ll be on here bitching about the heat and humidity! Ahhh, the cycle of life.
Sorry this one is so abbreviated. I feel comfortable blaming it on the relentless snow.
Tell us about your current weather, and location. And please consider subscribing to the mailing list if you haven’t. Right here. I’m sending out a recap email every Friday. I think it’s pretty good. Check it out, if you’re so inclined.
And I’ll see you guys again soon.
Have a great weekend!
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There is a a pond in our lot next door where a pond shouldn’t be. I’m covered in black mold and may be developing gills. 2021 in NC has been a soggy dang mess.
It’s funny how depending on where you live – if the streets gets plowed or not. I now live next to a very narrow alley. And I was surprised to hear a plow truck go by the other night. I think the plow was almost too wide. I think someone near where I live has some city connections. It was a city plow truck. I was not able to walk into town one day last week due to black ice. I think that is the first time in a long time that has happened. I tried – but starting falling backwards.
Oh shit. Don’t talk about falling backwards. Got whacked in late December at 530 in the morning. Blood everywhere. Fell from the bus a few weeks later. Last night, had the fortitude to fall frontward through my coffee table when getting up to do my bidness in the middle of the night. Smashed the wood, tile and steel table, ripped a shitload of skin off my arm. I need to childproof this house, just for me.
I see 2 of everything. Concussion for sure.
Rainy, cold and all around shitty in the capital city of NC.
Fort Myers, Florida checking in; 81 and sunny with no humidity. And I just happen to be a real estate broker if you want to move….
Here in the Philly suburbs it has been stopping snowing just long enough for me to clear away the snow so everything can get covered in a slick sheet of ice. It snowed again this morning but fuck it this time, what’s the point in owning a 4WD if not that? There has been constant snow on the ground for at least 3 weeks, maybe 4. Thankfully my street gets plowed very promptly.
JFC, really want to know? We moved to western Travis County, Tex-ass last spring. (No pandemic condemnations, please. We had contracts on both the old Virginia and new Texas houses before Covid hell broke loose.)
The rolling blackouts weren’t too bad as it never got colder than 63 in here. Power has now been fully restored, but our water has been non-existent since early Wednesday. Ruined my favorite stockpot melting snow for toilet flushing, but that’s a very minor issue. Just hope we can gather enough snow before Mother Nature melts it all for us. Roads are finally clear after being solid ice for several days, but grocery stores are closed because there is no food on the shelves. By tomorrow we’ll be out of potable water.
But worse than all of the above, poor Rafael Zodiac Killer Cruz was forced to cut short his Cancun vacation because of negative press. That poor man!
No worries, tho. It’ll be back in the 60s next week as typical Texas winter weather returns.
Southwest of Toronto, Ontario (Canada) here — and our situation is very close to Jeff’s. It’s been snowing constantly and relentlessly, for what seems like weeks now. 18″ last weekend, another 12″ throughout the week and in for another 12 more this weekend. We are running out of places to put it. It’s piled high and makes backing out of driveways or pulling out of parking lots tricky. It was around 12F all week, going down to 0F overnight most of the month. That didn’t stop me from grilling some hamburgers on the BBQ last night!
I’m with you Jeff — If I could move to a warmer climate… I would. Without hesitation. Winter started off just fine, but really went south (or is it north) this past month. Relentless snow and freezing temperatures.
I’m happy spring training is here, but the Toronto Blue Jays are forced to play home games in Florida on account of the Covid — and that’s just depressing. Sure, I’ll still watch and cheer for them, but it feels (and is) so far away. It’s just not the same. Same thing happened to the Toronto Raptors (playing in Tampa).
Love the weekly newsletter Jeff! I look forward to it every week! Thanks!
Stay warm everyone
I really wanted to paste a picture here, I am currently far away on a project, but am clearly technologically challenged. Couldn’t figure it out. It is a picture of the display in my truck, shows -40. Since I normally gauge in degrees C, in this case it doesn’t matter. This is the magical spot where both degrees C and degrees F are the same.
OK, that’s cold. The coldest I’ve experienced was -20 something Celsius (-28C IIRC) and it was painful to breathe the air in.
-40C is yikes. I’d even wear a hat.
It’s been precipitating off and on for about a week here (northern Virginia). Snow, sleet, freezing fog and everyone’s favorite, “wintry mix.” We only got a couple of inches, but it’s topped with a thick plate of ice. That’s no good. On the bright side, the snowplow just showed up for the first time since all this began. Maybe I can replenish groceries now.
Not bad here in Pittsburgh at the moment. It was snowing sideways a little while ago. Very fine snow, just enough to make the street wet. But streets and sidewalks are otherwise clear. Supposed to be 8° F tomorrow morning, then by mid week it’s to be a balmy 45. Psycho weather.
Eugene B. Sims says
Our Icemageddon event fizzled, thank all the deities. I can’t imagine spending days without electricity with the MIL.
Twenties over the weekend here in Columbus OH, looking forward to 40s next week and the melting of all of the snow we’ve accumulated. Most since 2015.
I am not sure if this is good or if this is bad but since the pandemic started and it became apparent that many of us could do much of our work from home, we no longer get Snow Days. But are expected to WFH instead. 🙁 BTW, central Delaware is an icy mess right now.
Weird. Need a jacket to walk to bus at 6 am. Then gotta carry the jacket home when it’s helllike in the afternoon. For God’s sake I already have to carry the beer home!
Farmer’s Daughter says
Illinois here. (NOT Chicago) We’ve had snow and, for us, frigid temps the last couple of weeks. Probably a total of 8” of snow now and I saw -7 during the daylight hours this week. Thankfully, the wind has not been blowing or we would be in a real pickle. Road commissioner does a so-so job plowing the road in front of the house. We were “snowed in” for only one day. More snow scheduled for Sunday and then warming up next week. I happen to be (what I think is) in the minority because I like snow and cold weather.
Jeff, I signed up for your newsletter several days ago but I haven’t received it yet.
Cold with too much snow here in Putnam (the forgotten County) New York, aka the suburbs. I don’t mind the snow and cold. I Do not like wind and ice. We’ve had our share of all and I’m just tired of it.. I think in the past 2 months we’ve had over 3 feet total. Next week is supposed to get into the 40s so that will help.
I work for a family (run by the 95 year old patriarch) who think it’s MANDATORY to come to the office no matter the weather. Then, the pandemic hit. We all got the ability to work from home. But we never did until 10 out of 13 people got Covid (including said patriarch). So now, we’re staying home during the shitty weather and one of the owners calls it our “snow days” and doles out ridiculous assignments. You know, in case we get bored. Thank God he isn’t the brightest bulb on the boulevard so he usually forgets about his little pet projects.
Here in Central Texas we got quite a bit of sleet starting last Thursday. It was continuous sleet / snow / ice layers through last night. All of this is foreign to the area and there’s no infrastructure to deal with it. Every building within a mile of my house was without power starting Sunday night through Tuesday night except me. I put in a Generac standby system a few years ago and this was its first test other than the installer’s test. It worked like a champ and I was running just fine the whole time.
As neighbors got to dire straights I started evacuating some people to family members with power since my Raptor could handle the untreated driving conditions. I also went out to my brother-in-law’s burn pile and hauled firewood back for my neighbors and offered to let the one’s who were close enough use some of my exterior plugs to run extension cords to keep things charged or run a toaster oven or hot plate.
Both of my brothers had burst pipes or water heaters. My sister’s father-in-law, who I evacuated to her house, had a flooded kitchen when I went back the next day to check on his cat. I turned off the water and used the shop vac to get as much water up as I could… cat was hiding and traumatized, but I could tell on follow-up visits he was eating his food, so alive. An hour ago I had a neighbor stuck in his driveway and used my winch to get him out. First time we’ve met… glad we did, he seems like a good guy.
Lows got down under 0 degrees which is a first as far as I can remember in central Texas. We still have water, but have been told to reduce consumption and check for leaks or we may loose it. So far the only problems for me were two smart home light switches appeared to get fried during the generator transfer. Those are about $40/each so $80 worth of damage and 0 hours of discomfort for me. Feeling pretty lucky and damn glad I put in the Generac.
Adam, I nominate you to hero status. You went over and above to help your f a Emily, friends and neighbors. The e world needs as bazillion clones of Adams. Thank you!
Coming to y’all from Waco TX.
Last Wednesday morning we woke up freezing because our power was out and it was 2 degrees outside. We could see our breaths inside the house and the water in the toilets was frozen solid, piss just bouncing off the glass, back onto my legs.
Then our pipes bursted. No power, no water, no heat for 8 days. Our power came back on yesterday. Fixing the pipes and insulating them is gonna be $2600 and some change, according to the plumber – naturally he’s a lot more excited about it than I am.
My wife’s idiot uncle has been trying to sell us a generator for some off-the-wall price that nets him enough money to keep himself flush with meth. He almost convinced her to buy it to plug our fridge in so everything wouldn’t “go spoilt”, he said. I said, “Randy, it’s colder in the goddamn house right now than it is inside the refrigerator when it’s plugged up. The toilet water is frozen. Ain’t nothing gonna ‘go spoilt’.” Nevertheless, his visit cost me the obligatory twenty dollar bill I’m always shamed into giving him.
I haven’t been to work in two weeks. What was the question again?
We drove to Austin this afternoon to shower at our son’s house. They were without power four and a half days, but always had water. Productive day cuz we swapped them some food for bottles of water. No frozen pipes in our house, just some broken water mains here in Lago Vista.
I’m sorry about the discomfort and the water and the electricity and the meth and stuff, and hope youall do fine if the power comes back on and when the water delivery systems are repaired.
Of the 48 contiguous states, 47 are part of regional power grid systems that can vector electric power to regions that have anomalous weather conditions. Occasionally, my state of Washington gets buried in snow, and California, Arizona and other western states send us excess power. We do the same when it gets very hot down there.
Then there’s Texas (except for El Paso, which has lost neither power nor water). Obviously, you guys didn’t create the isolated Texas power grid, nor the lift-pump water delivery systems (we prefer gravity). I hope there are compensating factors for living in Texas. Kinky Friedman has always said there are, and Dan Jenkins left for New York only to return to Fort Worth.
Stay warm. Live and be well.
Jason and Clue,
I hope you will find the attached link helpful in staying warm when the weather outside is frightful. It’s a seven minute video shot in a recording studio featuring Jake Shimabukuro on electric ukulele with a hot electric lap steel player and capable drummer and electric bassist playing an extended version of Hendrix’ “If 6 was 9” from the 1967 Experience album Axis: Bold as Love. It’s worth playing it on whatever screen in your house has the best sound system. If a johnthebasket with a bypassed heart and rebuilt back can dance to this at 71, you guys can probably get the motion of the ocean in your superb physical conditions.
Again, I wish you and your families safe passage through this weather mess and only the best health through the Covid mess. Godspeed.
I don’t dance much anymore, what with a crumbling spine, one replaced hip, the other hip failing – but that sure would get me pedaling faster on my exercise bike. Thanks, John.
Life is better today. Woke up to water; we can flush toilets again! Ah, the little things, eh? Icicles melted, snow almost gone, forecast of mid-50s today, mid-60s tomorrow. Normal south central Texas winter.
Wouldn’t have moved here by choice, but when the time comes our son will be in charge of pushing wheelchairs; it’ll be way easier with us living closer. And I love all the cacti. Hill country’s not so bad, but Texas infrastructure sucks.
John, that video was pretty awesome. The lap steel guy sound like a Moog and a Theremin and a noble savage with a screaming Stratocaster, all at once. One of the commenters thought he might be Jerry Douglas, and that seems right. Regardless, he’s pretty good.
Yup, it’s Jerry Douglas. In the 60’s the best players hung out in LA. Soon after, they moved to Nashville. When Glen Campbell started playing country instead of pop, and David Bromberg gave up that session money to be part of Jerry Jeff Walker’s touring band, the writing was on the wall. I just couldn’t read yet.
Actually, it started, as so many things have, with Dylan. Bob Johnston hired Charlie McCoy to play on Desolation Row (on Highway 61), and five months later, Dylan recorded all of a double album (Blonde on Blonde) in Nashville, then went back for John Wesley Harding and Nashville Skyline. Had Brian Wilson gone there instead of going crazy, musical history might have been a little different. Nothing wrong with The Wrecking Crew: the zeitgeist was changing and that shit never makes the papers ’till a few decades later.
Now, of course, they live on the Web and get their mail in Austin or the Montana plains wherever they want. So it goes.
Wow… didn’t know you were in Waco. I have a guest house if you needed. Over by Hillcrest and Lake Air.
Oh thanks man. We’re completely out of the woods now but me an my extended family are coming anyway. Lol
The Qweezy Mark says
Formerly Ashley in NYC says
Southern VT here. Not a native Vermonter, grew up in AZ, but have lived elsewhere in the NE. Took a family vacation one year to Stowe for the holidays and it literally did not stop snowing the entire week. At the time, thought it was fucking magical. Have since realized high school me was a fucking idiot. This has been that kind of a winter.
The week before Christmas, we got 3 feet. In addition to the fun of digging out of that mess, it took down the new gutters (just installed this fall!) on the back of the house and some siding etc with them. The side driveway is a frozen sheet of solid snow / ice about 5 inches thick. My family talked me into buying a big old house in VT. Thinking I will have a solid justification defense at my murder trial.
As soon as borders open and vaccines are a thing for my age group, I am on the first plane to sunny Indonesia. This is about the time of year when I normally flee the country for warmer climes, so I am growing crankier by the day. Worst winter I have seen since moving here.
PS – used to be a regular blog reader / very occasional commenter, lost track a bit when RSS readers fell out of fashion, recently started seeing the recap emails pop up in my inbox & was delighted to rediscover Jeff’s particular off-brand of humor. Thanks for the laughs 🙂
The Yodler says
Cold and snowy here in the Heartland. Warming/freezing may bring ice dams. Might have to get the son to use the roof rake.
I remember back in 2003 with the great blackout from Detroit to Ohio to Toronto. We lost power for four days and had to threw out tons of food.
Here at the Jersey shore we’ve only had about 3 inches of snow in the past week or so, but the constant melting and re-freezing is making it impossible to clear any driveways and walkways for more than a few hours at a time. Bolting for Myrtle Beach at the end of the month. Forecast there is for some rain, but at least it won’t be frozen.
Ian in Scotland says
Scotland got snow this year!
It snowed hard for two days, and about a foot lay for a week or so.
I told my kids that we used to expect it every year when I was a kid.
They found that hard to believe!
Godspeed, Lawrence Ferlinghetti. 101 years was a hell of a run.
Lawrence Ferlinghetti moved American culture forward as much as, perhaps, any other individual in the second half of the 20th century. J Edgar Hoover and Richard Nixon, pushing hard in the other direction, never had a chance.
Ferlinghetti was always on the side of the angels. Now his spirit rests with them.