We’ve had a series of nasty violent incidents in our state and even our fair city in the last week. I blame the snow.
No kidding. We had accumulating snow. Usually in April we get a dusting, but this time it piled up quickly and stuck around.
You know the shock-denial-anger-acceptance stages of grief? Well we in Michigan have stages of snow acceptance. It goes month to month.
November: Sadly, this is when it usually starts. Thanksgiving can either be a wonderful autumn afternoon or the first week that the snowblower gets hauled out of the garage. This is usually followed by much profanity because the gas in the blower has been sitting in the tank since the previous April and the darn thing won’t start. And with relatives from out of state on their way you’re really feeling the pressure. Alas, it’s usually heavy, wet snow and we must stop for a moment and ponder its beauty as it clings to the trees.
December: Snow is acceptable in December. Once it starts, it never lets up and we forget that grass looks like. In fact people get a little cranky in those ultra rare years when the ground isn’t covered. We’ve been conditioned to expect a white Christmas and even feel sorry for those sad folks in warmer climates who don’t experience the joy that Bing is dreaming about.
January: Snow is acceptable, again, in January. Go skiing. I get to wear my fashionable knit Mets cap. By now the blower has nice fresh gas and roars to life at the first pull of the cord. My neighbors on both sides and I have a little system where the first one out clears the sidewalks of the others — but not the driveways. Otherwise we’d never leave the house.
February: It’s starting to get a little old. People comment on this. And when this happens, without fail some smart ass says, "It’s Michigan and it’s February." To which I reply, "Yeah, but I don’t have to like it."
March: When it snows in March — and it always does — people are ticked. We’re tired of smelling like gas after snowblowing. We’re tired of boots. We’re tired of coming out of work in the dark and scraping the frozen crap off the windshield. And there are few sadder sights than the white ground as the plane dips through the clouds for arrival after a trip to spring training. I swear the newly obtained tan melts from your body as the wheels touch the runway.
April: We are openly hostile to snow in April. Actually, we are openly hostile to everything and everyone because of the snow. Woe to the Starbucks barista who puts too much whipped cream on your latte. We refuse to shovel, as if this act of defiance will do anything other than get your feet wet on the way to get the newspaper out of the mail box each morning. We refuse to wear the winter coat once the spring jackets have been out for more than a week. We curse at the television screen when the weather man is on. (In fairness, I curse at the anchors and some of the reporters, too, every day. But that’s just a professional thing.) We shake our fists in rage at the plow driver when he passes the house. We shake our fists at bosses. And kids. And the neighbors’ kids. We kneel damply over or now-limp daffodils that were tricked into shooting out of the ground by a teasing day of 60 degrees. We snap at the little kids who chew on my laptop cord while I'm trying to write a story while my daughter is in dance class. We fondle the new kayak we got for our birthday and wonder if would also work as a sled — then curse that we even think about such things. Usually the Tigers are already six games out of first place at this point, adding to the overall surliness of the month. We sometimes even refrain from blogging for a week because we have nothing nice to say about anyone — especially Jimmy Rollins.
So I wasn’t surprised when Major League Baseball felt the need to move three Indians games from snow-covered Cleveland to Milwaukee with its retractable roof. I’m confident it was for the safety of the players — from fans who had just one snow day too many.
In other words... Lets Go Emps!
Faith and Fear in Flushing is required reading every day, but Greg's post about the origins of the team name -- and some of the others considered -- is so awesome that it must be pointed out for all to read. A classic!