Oh the weather outside is frightful

11 01 2011

It’s the calm before the storm.


For the past few days, we’ve been promised a significant snowfall beginning some time this evening. The Wednesday morning commute will be hellacious, we’re advised, before it all turns to slop and rain. Salting and sanding trucks are standing by, transit is prepared, schools are monitoring the situation. We’ve been forewarned.


Having grown up in colder climes, I’m quite accustomed to “storm hype.” The advent of 24-hour weather channels, Doppler radar and perky presenters has only made it worse. There’s a lot of air to fill, and “cloudy and cool” just doesn’t cut it. So as soon as there’s even an inkling of weather drama on the horizon, the forecasters are all over it. Even if that hint is still tickling the coast of Japan.

Of course, this is the “Wet Coast,” where we choose to live precisely because we don’t usually get a lot of snow or cold weather; so the advent of either, or, God forbid both at the same time, is a noteworthy occurrence. And given our innate inability to cope with such horrific weather conditions, a little advance notice so we can

• create massive backlogs at the local garage to get snowtires installed on the car

• create massive lineups at the grocery store checkout as we stock the pantry to ride out the storm

• create massive congestion at the video store as we stock up on movies to help us weather the weather

• create an early rush hour as we race home to try to beat the weather

• create busy signals as we clog up all phone circuits by phoning our friends and family around town and around the world to discuss the imminent armageddon

So it was with the massive cloud of doom looming that Katie and I set out for a little run before dinner. We were secretly hoping the snow had started, because it would be kind of nice to feel the flakes on our faces before the route iced up. As soon as we left the warmth of the condo building, the cold night are bit our noses and braced our toes. But there was no snow. It was already three hours past its scheduled arrival time.

Even the sidewalk is ready for the much-hyped snow storm.

Are we once again victims of storm hyperbole, in which the severity of the forecast storm is actually the inverse of its advance billing?

* Update: It’s now actually snowing.




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