29 January 2014

Icepocalypse 2014

Not one to make fun of my fellow Houstonians, but I feel that, sometimes, we tend to overreact a wee bit to certain situations.  We can handle hurricanes, storms, tornadoes, droughts, fire ants with some aplomb (ooh, one of them 5 dollar words).  However, when it comes to colder temps, we have a tendency to go into the tend to an apocalyptic, end of the world mode.  With the onset of the polar vortex down south, we have seen our temps dip into, to quote local newscasters, a "frigid, arctic blast".  Last Friday, there was a full on panic over the icy road conditions and winter weather warning that had a lot of businesses and schools closed.  I had planned to take off Friday morning for a dentist appointment and arose to icy roads and freezing temps.  Work had asked everyone to delay the start of the day until 1:00 but I headed in at 1030 (roads were not that bad).  A number of the freeways and overpasses were closed because of icing.  A lot of people made it in without any problems.  And this was because the temps got down to a brutal 30 degrees.  

This week, it was round 2. Tuesday's forecast was for rain/sleet/snow with temps getting as low as, dare I say it?, 30 degrees.  Local weather forecast was pretty much doom and gloom (Oh God, Oh God, We're gonna die!).  Given the weather reports and projections for icy conditions, people went into full on apocalypse mode.  All of the area schools closed.  Most businesses closed.  City was put on emergency standby.  The hoard (12) of trucks were dispatched to toss chat rock on the roadways (we don't do salt down here).  Everyone was prepared for the end of the world.  My office had prepped everyone not to come in until 1:00 pm like earlier to allow the roads to clear.  So, when we awoke to temps still around 40 degrees, we were told to come in.  For all the projections of doom, the weather never really got extreme.  No way this can compare to some of the conditions that you guys are experiencing now.  

Now, I am no expert, but I have to admit that I have lived in colder climes during my life.  I spent more than a few years in my youth in New Jersey (I recall many Jersey winters plowing dad's driveway with the snow blower).  Later on, I spent several years in Germany with the Army, so I am not totally immune to cold weather conditions.  I realize that we don't want to risk people's safety for some minor goal or project, but it seems that we sometimes jump the gun on emergency response.  A lot of people on the net seem to be having fun with the Houston Icepocalypse 2014:  



Good thing this Icepocalypse ended quickly.  Otherwise, we might have had to resort to cannibalism.  


lotta joy said...

In Indiana, while on the fire department, we got to work or were declared AWOL. And we got there, no matter what.

It makes us laugh now to see how many layers of clothes people put on when it's 30 degrees and no snow in sight.

lotta joy said...

Yay. My comment published!

agg79 said...

Lotta - Yay! I can get your comments. Feel free to sling all the comments/advice you have available.

Hope you are not freezing your tail off over there.

Rock Chef said...

We don't react well to snow in England either, even though we get it most winters! 2 inches sees everything shut down and the old folks fighting over bread like rationing is coming back again!

Abby said...

It's nice that *some* of you can laugh about it.
30 degrees! Break out the flip flops!

lotta joy said...

No one is laughing because they're afraid their lips will freeze to their gums. Okay...So I'm laughing...a little.

terri said...

I think it's all a matter of what you're accustomed to. For those who have never lived in cold weather climates, it's hard to know how to manage when the weather goes to extremes.

I've lived in MN my whole life and still get a little anxious when I have to travel in the icy/snowy conditions. The schools around here closed down due to weather, I think 5 times this month. But businesses rarely close. And working from home is a very limited option.

ShadowRun300 said...

30? No way! I've been begging to get up to 30 around here!
But Terri's right. It's all relative. It's colder for all of us this winter.
And what is chat rock? Around here, they use salt and beet juice.

meleah rebeccah said...

I'm always amazed when other states have no idea how to handle snow, ice, and cold temps!