Beantown had it’s first snowfall of any measurable amount of snow this past Friday.
By measurable amount, I mean they were canceling schools before it had even started to snow. No. Really. Cancelled. Cancelled. Cancelled. Cancelled.
When I was a kid, there was no such thing as getting a 12-hour advance cancellation Nope. The process was different. Logical.
Step One: Weatherman (we didn’t have weather-women in my growing up years, only a Wonder Woman and I don’t believe she was forecasting any true weather.) would prepare the area for the possibility of the snow storm.
Not to mention, it wasn’t done in the panic-inducing, Armageddon fashion of we’re all doomed. It wasn’t over dramatic with twelve different charts and people along the roadway reporting if it was snowing yet or not. It was a simple and polite nod to the snow with a helpful sidetone of what to do next.
EXAMPLE: Blade County can expect about 2 inches of snow. You might want to stop and pick up extra milk and bread on your way home tonight.
Step Two: Children across the area kept a mindful watch on the skies. Hundreds of little weather-forcasters. It was a vigil that can only be compared to that of the arrival of Santa Claus in December:
Has it started snowing yet?
twenty minutes later…….Is it snowing now?
ten minutes later…… How about now? (Angst sets in and a dramatic twirling collapse onto the couch at this point is sure to happen.)
fifteen minutes later…. Now?
ten minutes later…..Was that a flake?
blink. blink. blink. I saw a flake! That was a flake! DAD….IT’S SNOWING!
Step Three: Kids excitedly get ready for bed, anticipating no school the following day and continue to check on the current snow levels. At tucking into bed time, parents advise not to get too excited….after-all it’s only going to snow 2 inches and school will still happen. (Gee thanks, Bubble burster.)
There is one last peep out the bedroom curtains – confirmed, still snowing.
EUREAKA! This is great! No school and no crummy math class. NO GYM!
Dreams of drinking lots of hot chocolate and pelting the hell out of Charlie (the butthead down the street) in a snowball fight come to mind. He really shouldn’t have broken your eraser in half….the Pink Pearl one….now he’s going to get it.
Step Four: Without fail about 2:00AM, it’s time for an automatically induced snow verification check. Eyes open and there is a quick scamper to the window for visual confirmation of all the piles of drifting snow.
(rubbing of the eyes)
THAT CAN’T BE!
Utter disbelief —–
The cars aren’t covered. The grass is still visible. No snow in the street light glow.
NOTHING. Not even enough to make a snowball to pelt The Butthead.
Spirits drop. Disappointment begins. Tears nearly begin to form. Then it washes over like a bad milk induced vomit…..we’ll have to go to gym class in the morning.
Step Five: For children everywhere, this is where they start to invoke the insurance claim process with the Universe. Usually whispered silently while laying in bed, awash with the impending doom of school not being cancelled. For example:
Hey, the Weatherman said there was supposed to be snow. I was banking on that snow. I need the snow. Do you have any idea how badly I suck at basketball? That’s what we’re playing in gym tomorrow. I have no hand-eye coordination, which if you didn’t know, is ESSENTIAL for playing basketball. And by the way, there is a Drill for Skill in math class and whenever I get sent to the board, the teacher always gives me the hardest question to figure out. I NEVER get it right. Come on, work with me here. If you make it snow, I promise to not pick on my little sister for a week. No. Wait! I also promise to help Mom and take out the garbage without being asked. That’s a bargain – two things for one snow day! I can’t stand gym class and how we have to run around the school 6 times. Have you seen how short my legs are? Yeah, that 6 times takes me twice as long. Please. I don’t want to go tomorrow. I would rather have a surprise History quiz next week then go to school tomorrow. I’d rather…..I’d rather….I’d rather…..crack my funny bone into the doorway then go to school. I’d do it twice! Crack my funny bone into the doorway. Please help me out here. Bring the snow. Lots of snow. Well, just enough really to cancel school for tomorrow. It’s not too much to ask. Please. Please. Please. Please. Please. Please. Amen.
Step Six: Exhaustion sets in and eventually sleep returns.
Step Seven: The day breaks. Alarm goes off for school and it’s time to get up and ready for the torture of the day. Then it sets in —- THE SNOW! DID IT COME?! A race to the window confirms, indeed it did snow. BUT there is one thing left to have —- confirmation of closure.
Step Eight: One specific radio station lists all the school closures. It goes by the school’s assigned number. The numbers were ridiculous. It’s like trying to win the lottery with one number. And patience, you better have a lot of patience.
Seated close to the radio, with the ear next to the radio, so nothing is missed….the list is being repeated again. Parents have advised, they haven’t called your school number yet.
Everyone anxiously waits…..and listens:
480, 491, 500, 502, 503, 504, 505, 625 two hours late, 626, 627 no evening classes….
904, 907, 1010, 1011, 1012 two hours late, 1015, 1016, 1017, 1018, 1021…
As you listen, you begin to panic. Not all schools are closing. There are big jumps without closure. Some are only two hours late. (Is that enough to get me out of gym and math?)
Come on….1030. Come on….1030. Come on…..come on….come on! Who has time for this?
1022, 1023, 1025, 1027, 1028, 1029………………waiting …………..seems like an eternity…….announcer clears his throat and make some comment about all the schools closures…….1030, 1031, 1034…
WAIT! DID HE SAY 1030? Was that 1030? One look at the parents confirms the out come – NO SCHOOL!
Step Nine: The Supreme Happy Dance Celebration commences. The relief of a day with out gym torture and math embarassment results with a shriek of delight and running through the house yelling to the world “NO SCHOOL! NO SCHOOL! NO SCHOOL!”
Eureka! We did it! No school. A torturous burden is lifted from the shoulders of this small person.
Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you!
Now, where’s the snowsuit!? Where’s the hot chocolate? Where’s my gloves?