Snow is a Four-Letter Word

There are many four-letter words that I adore; think cake, cats, and cash, and probably more than one or two four-letter words that I dislike; think meat, mice, and muck. But no other four-letter word around gets under my skin more than the word snow.

I see no redeeming quality to snow. Rain (another four-letter word) at least waters the plants and gives my car a quick bath, but snow - I just don't get it.

Sure, I know, it looks pretty...for about an hour, and then it gets all slushy and gross. The snow on the side of the road gets all black from the passing exhaust of the cars, and the snow piles in the parking lots of local shopping centers look like giant, cold, towers of winter hell. They pile the snow so high that I've seen them there until March and sometimes April. It's bad enough for snow to come along in the winter, but then it rudely encroaches on the spring too!

There's the shoveling; who wants to be out there doing that? There's the melting; which here at the beach leads to flooding. And let's not even get into the traffic jams, cancelled plans, and the mad rush of shoppers at the grocery store buying eggs, milk, and bread.

I know there are people who like snow and I can think of at least one person who is surely hating me right now; I'm looking at you, Huyen. I find these are normally people who enjoy snow-related activities, such as snowboarding and skiing. Me? I'm not even coordinated enough to walk, let alone barrel down a hill at top speed on two little sticks.

And while we're talking about walking, let's not forget snow's friend, my least favorite three-letter word, ice. Ice cripples the city, stops traffic, and makes even walking out to get the mail a hazard. I see no redeeming quality to ice either. The only ice I like to see are the cubes in my drink.

Recently, I experienced my first snowfall at the beach. I'll admit it was beautiful. I also admit I enjoyed the wonder of watching the flakes delicately balancing on tree branches, and seagulls frolicking in the white fluffy stuff, but that awe and wonder lasted only about an hour!

As I was driving home after the storm, I noticed the slush, the dirty snow, and the bad drivers. Upon arriving at home, it was on with the snow boots and out with the shovel. Mounds of snow and salt tracked in the house reminded me why I could never truly be converted to a snow fan.

As I write this, I am preparing to head out for a speaking engagement tomorrow at a location about two hours away from my home. The forecast is calling for snow. Will the gig get cancelled? I don't know, it depends on who you listen to. One forecaster says that we're in for a "non-event," some are screaming into the TV to run to the store, stock up, and hunker down.

Schools have already cancelled classes - we haven't even had one flake yet!

It's the not knowing that really gets me. It's like spinning the wheel of weather. Will it snow? Will it not? Will we all go to work tomorrow or will we be snowed in for days, scouring the kitchen cabinets for something to eat? And may the force be with you if you didn't get out to the store before the storm. Now you're home watching the flakes fall while chowing down on a can of pickled beets and a box of rice.

I long for summer; my favorite six-letter word. I long for sunshine and blue skies. I long for days when I can leave my house without bundling up like the Stay Puff Marshmallow Man! I long for days when I can make plans in advance, confident that nothing will keep me from going through with them. And I long for the days of parking my beach chair at the edge of the ocean and enjoying the sand between my toes.

To all the snow lovers out there, I mean no disrespect. If you truly enjoy the cold, wet, traffic-snarling, panic-inducing white stuff, you have at that. Me? I'd be happy if I never saw a snowfall again. In a world full of Cold Misers, I'm a Heat Miser through and through.

Here's hoping my gig goes on as planned tomorrow. And if it does snow in your neck of the woods, here's hoping that you all get on safely and soundly.

Now, I'm off to do what everyone else is likely off doing - I'm heading to the grocery store. Wish me luck!