Snow day!

Don't ever eat the snow in Queens.

Boy that snow sure looks tasty.

Last night while lying in bed, I tuned my old clock radio to the only news station it picks up. A commercial came on for something forgettable and far away – a car service or business software maybe. But the weather report was on its way, on the eight, right after the break. I knew what they would say – six to ten inches of snow expected in the greater New York area. I walked through the beginnings of it earlier and had since checked weather.com. But I wanted to hear the forecast on news radio, complete with chimes and the bustling newsroom in the background, sounding like it has forever. I wanted to be sure before falling asleep that school would be canceled.

One peek out the window this morning and I knew. Today is a snow day. Snow was piled high on the fire escape and still coming down. Wind blew it right to left across the Queens panorama that I see out my window – apartment buildings to stores to subway tracks to hospital. The plows were out; merchants shoveled their sidewalks. But the snow piled up faster than they could clear it away. Still it didn’t seem like a blizzard from up here, more like an almost life-sized snow globe of someplace that would never be in a snow globe. Everything seems separate and more peaceful when you’re above it.

But it's ok to write on the snowy buildings in Queens.

But it's ok to write on the snowy buildings in Queens. In fact, it's required.

As a kid, today would be a free day… no school, no homework just hours of sledding and snowball fights. We’d all be out playing at the park by 10:00 in the morning. Maybe someone would get together a neighborhood football game in the afternoon. And when I got home – cold, wet and tired – Mom would make hot chocolate and cookies. Sound a little too perfect? Maybe so, but that’s how it was.

Snow days are pretty damn awesome for unemployed 36 year olds, but in a different way. I have license to stay home and do nothing, and not feel guilty about it. I can curl up in a blanket and watch that Netflix movie I’ve had for three weeks.  I can put on my boots and go take a look around. I can even (gasp!) take a nap. The snow softens everything, covers up all the worries and problems like a warm blanket. Nothing is visible except white. Later cars and buses will drive through it. People will stomp on it and kick it around. And life will surface. But for now it’s a snow day. Enjoy it for the reality holiday it is.

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4 Comments

  1. danny wrote:

    I just wanted to stop by and say I read your blog almost daily. I really enjoy your writing and am just another American who is truly disgusted with how our country is going down the drain with all the jobs being eliminated/outsourced. I really hope you find a job soon, your resume is quite impressive and you seem like a nice guy. I really hope it all works out for you.

    Tuesday, March 3, 2009 at 3:48 am | Permalink
  2. Judi wrote:

    I remember back in the glory days when I worked full-time, I was hesitant to go to work whenever a blizzard occurred during rush hour. I can honestly admit that it has been rather nice of having the luxury to stay home during inclimate conditions, but it gets old pretty quick.

    I live in the snow belt, so I’m quite used to snow, ice, blizzards, etc.

    Tuesday, March 3, 2009 at 12:03 pm | Permalink
  3. Norm wrote:

    Yeah, NYC doesn’t get that much snow, usually one or two storms each winter. So there’s still a little bit of novelty to it. Constant snow would definitely get old.

    Tuesday, March 3, 2009 at 2:19 pm | Permalink
  4. unemployed wrote:

    lets swap… i have twice the room and more cats but sense i would have more to do in nyc. keep em coming Norm.

    Friday, March 6, 2009 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

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    […] In fact, let me take the Norm-bashing to the logical next step. Tomorrow at 3:00 pm I will stand on my fire escape in Queens – where entitled MBAs and first-generation immigrants commingle – so the world can hurl […]