This winter has been heavily sprinkled with winter storms. (Aside: WHEN did they start naming winter storms??) Each time, everybody rushes to the stores for milk and bread. Each time there's a run on sidewalk salt. Each time, people act as if God just invented snow and no one has any idea yet if it's toxic or not.
Well, okay, I'll give the south it's due: God DID just invent snow and who knows if that stuff causes birth defects and burns or whatnot. If you live south of West Virginia, better stay indoors to be safe. And eat bread and milk - it's a well-established antidote to the toxic effects of snow.
And for those in the path of an ICE storm? Forget the bread and milk. Stock up on firewood, sterno, and kerosene with lamps and heaters to go with. Food is irrelevant without power and heat. I have nothing but deep respect for ice, and nothing but sorrow for those who have already died from the ice of this current storm.
But for northerners? Get OVER yourselves. Put on your big girl panties and long johns, grab a shovel and for the good Lord's sake don't drive if you don't know how to handle it. Our cupboard has flour, yeast, and powdered milk. We have firewood and a bread maker. No power? We know how to cook biscuits over the fire. No fireplace? Our friends are welcome here. Bring wood if you see it lying in the road on the way over - might as well assist in the cleanup effort.
Our weather forecast for the next two days has varied from no snow to as much as 18 inches as we are at the outer northern edge of this thing. Such uncertainty in forecasting is normal here - we are between the coastal Nor'easters and northern lake effect weather, usually on the edge of one or the other. Our worst-case scenario is getting pinned between both types of systems, but in my memory of 25 years living here, there's only been one truly HUGE storm, in 1993. I remember sitting with my freshly shattered ankle elevated on my couch, watching the snow rise to the middle of my living room windows. Thank God I had good tenants who dug us out. It was a bad winter to be on crutches or in a wheelchair.
And of course no one my age who grew up in western New York State will ever forget the White Death that hit in 1977. There is no one word big enough to describe this storm. If you are short on time, skip to 3:13 for a good visual in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-gRb_MuUgg Yeah. Us geezers know snow. So every time I hear the word "Snowpocalypse" I just laugh. "Icepococlypse" on the other hand, is no laughing matter. And I think it's a better word for what's happening to the south of us this week.