Friday, February 26, 2010


You would think that, having actually lived through two blizzards in four days earlier this month, the Baltimore area would be a little less like 'fraidy-cats about the possibility of another snow storm, but such is not the case. In offices, car repair shops, physical therapy suites and grocery stores all around our town the past couple of days, very little actual work has been done (except for me, and you!) because of all the chitter-chatter about The Next Big One.

As late as Wednesday night, when I fell into bed with visions of salt trucks dancing in my head, the meteorologists (all the tv anchors are just saying "meterologists" now, saving that extra "O" for singing the National Anthem at O-riole games) were falling all over themselves to cover any and all possible scenarios as the Monster Storm came in from the west and then Gathered Strength off the seacoast and Barreled Up The Atlantic, headed for the I-95 corridor...

That's the new thing that they're all saying now, that the storms will "scoot up the I-95 corridor" as if the storm gets on the interstate and uses the fast lane to accelerate. They should remember that here in B'more, most citizens call every road that is wider than the back alley "The Beltway." The Beltway is one of those circular highways, engirdling the city and its suburbs and making it possible to get from the northeast area, where we live, to the southwest side, in a matter of minutes. As long as the minutes are between the hours of 3 and 4 AM.

I-95. on the other hand, is a north-and-southbound interstate that takes one from New England, where they boil lobsters under grey skies and eat themselves silly, to the deep South, where they broil themselves silly in the sun and eat grits. Many people from this area, the mid-Atlantic, take 95 down to Florida for the winter, to escape the dire forecasts we live through, and also to get big steamin' bowls full o' grits .

And that's what I mean: the forecasts around here in wintertime are tougher to deal with than the weather!

But if you're in the business of supplying stock footage to tv news crews and moviemakers, you will need lots of film of:
  • dumptrucks being filled with road salt
  • hapless motorists sliding on icy roads
  • someone walking on a downtown street with their hat blowing off
  • schoolkids sliding down snowy hills on cafeteria trays
  • homeowners shoveling driveways and sidewalks (include scraping sounds and sighs)
  • people flocking to grocery stores for bread, milk and toilet paper
  • displays of shovels, rock salt, and snowblowers for sale at Home Depot
Wednesday night's dire predictions bore no fruit, and as I scribble this, early on Thursday, they are telling us that the storm just might hit us again on its way out to sea. We'll see. Stay calm.

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