Proud members of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy. We strongly believe in personal freedom, responsibility, and gun rights. We also believe in the 90/10 theory. That means that 10% of the people have 90% of the talent. Unfortunately, we are not in the 10% category. However, the rest of us are still better than 90% of the politicians.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Why I don't like driving in snow

I have to confess, I am one of the drivers that everyone who has any experience driving in snow and ice hates to see on the road at those times. I grew up in the land of climate, not weather. If we wanted to see weather we went to visit it, it never came to visit us. I never saw snow that wasn't on the ski slopes or in the neighbor's yard. H. used to rent a snow machine and every year for Christmas he would put 36 tons of snow in his front yard for his sons and all the neighbor kids to play in. The snow I knew was always nicely manicured.

Once on a trip it started to snow when we were at a hotel and my father took me down to play in it, but that was the only time I actually saw it in it's undisciplined natural state where it just fell out of the sky and landed wherever it wanted. That's not really a good system, by the way.

Then when I was a college sophomore, my boyfriend, for reasons still completely unfathomable, decided to go to law school in Michigan. Our school breaks were not at the same time, so on break I went to visit him.

Since he had classes the first day of my visit, I thought I would use the time and go tour the State Capitol.

It snows in Michigan.

So before I could go I had to dig his car out. Intrepidly, I got the snow shovel out of the car and began. Now, when we were at that hotel when I was a little girl, the snow was removed by large trucks that came through and vacuumed the snow, blowing it into the dump beds and hauling it away. So I also got the big black trash bags out to dispose of the snow, so it would be ready for the trucks to haul it away. It was a residential area, after all. And I began scooping the snow into the big black trash bags.

BF's landlord lived below him in an apartment with a large bow window where he would sit and drink his morning coffee and read the paper. After watching me for a little while he came out and said, "What are you doing?"

(It's ok, I'm used to being greeted that way.)

So I told him, "I'm going to see the Capitol."

"No, what are you doing?"

"Digging the car out so I can go see the Capitol."

"You want to borrow a shovel?"

"Isn't that what this is? Looks just like what we use to dig for clams at home."

"Around here we use those for scraping the windshields."

"Oh, then, yes, I would like to borrow a shovel."

He gave me the shovel and went back to his paper and coffee. Shovel in hand, the job was proceeding apace, when I was again interrupted. This time by the guy who lived on the third floor, who was on his way out to class.

"What are you doing?"

"I'm going to tour the Capitol."

"No, what are you doing?"

"Digging the car out so I can go see the Capitol."

"Why are you putting the snow in trash bags?"

"For the dump trucks."

"Huh? Never mind. Most people just pile it up in front of their cars."

Well, that certainly made the job go faster. Once I had the car cleared off, I blithely hopped in, engaged the clutch, and took off. Sort of. I had no idea cars could travel sideways without a stunt driver behind the wheel.

Several blocks and one bridge later I decided I didn't really want to see the Capitol that bad, and tried to turn the car to go back to the apartment. It wasn't very cooperative, so I ended up leaving it there and walking back.

When BF got home the first words out of his mouth were "Everyone at school knows my girlfriend is a natural blond now. Were you really bagging the snow?"

"Yes, I.."

"Hey, wait, where's my car?"

"It's down the block. I tried to bring it back here, but it didn't want to come. You see..."

By then he was out of hearing, so there wasn't any point in explaining further.

It took at least ten years for him to admit that perhaps he should have considered my lack of experience in those conditions before handing me the keys to his Corvette.

And that's why I don't like driving in snow and ice.


  1. Why I don't like driving in snow. But sometimes you just gotta do it. Just... try to avoid the rear wheel drive sports cars!

  2. Yes, the 'vette wasn't quite as pretty when I got through as it had been when I started. I now live in a place where we get one, maybe two days of snow and or ice every year. Obviously not enough for me to really learn to drive in those conditions. Unfortunately, I have one of those jobs where I am considered "Essential Personnel" and I don't think I would like the consequences of missing due to poor road conditions. They tell me we can ask the police to transport us, but they don't really like doing it and they won't take us home again. Since I live 30 miles from work in an area with no public transportation that's not really useful. Generally, my preparation for winter consists of praying that the snow day will fall on my day off work.

  3. Great story. Did you manage to get onto Michigan Ave and at least see the Capitol in the distance while spinning out every which way?

    Snow here in Michigan sucks, the freezing rain we got last Friday morning however sucks much more.

  4. Thanks. I was reminded of this when I read your hating winter story.

    I left the car on the corner of Michigan and his street in East Lansing. It was when I saw how much further I had to go and how much busier it was when I got off his street that I decided to quit. I had already crunched one little tiny thing and the odds weren't improving.