Posted by: dougery | August 26, 2011

Hyperbological Prediction Center Forecasts Certain Doom for Entire East Coast

For the first time in my long and illustrious life (I was a guest on the Jim Kelly show after all [but that is a story for another time]) the place where I live is under a tropical storm watch. This morning I brought up ye olde weather dot com, typed in my zip-code (which doesn’t even bring up my town exactly [we’ve been over this before as it is too small to have its own zip-code and shares with neighboring Lanesboro]) and there it was at the top of the screen.

Tropical Storm Watch.

Now look. New Ashford is over a 1,000 feet above see level. We have like, mountains and forests and stuff. Nature’s very own windbreaks and dams. I realize that it will likely be very windy (perhaps scarily so) and very very rainy but L and I have got the first 2 discs of Friday Night Lights S2 (clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose!), and (power) failing that, candles and a small library’s amount of books. I suppose it is entirely possible we lose the lights at some point, as the lines that run to our home extend for miles to the road and there are lots of old limbs along the way that might be tired of this mortal coil and decide to come crashing down. But the point is this ain’t Cape Hatteras or even Cod. We’ll be fine.

By far the most harrowing weather related experiences of my life have all involved snow. There was the drive from Brattleboro, VT to West Dover, VT last Thanksgiving where the ground was still too warm and a sudden snow storm made things treacherous to say the least. My poor friend Jake thought he was not going to make it, you should have seen the depth of that drink he poured himself when we got back to the ski house.

There was another, far worse white-knuckle drive I made to pick up my brother in Erie, PA one holiday season after a friend had driven him halfway up from the college they both attended Pittsburgh. The route from Hamburg, NY to Erie, PA is a stretch of highway traversed by one of the most productive lake effect snow machines in the world. And it was in full effect that night as I drove about 15 miles an hour in a 65 mph zone past tractor trailers that had skid off the highway and just hunkered down for the night. In retrospect it had been ridiculously reckless, the overconfident “I’ll save him!” of a 20 year-old. I’m probably lucky I didn’t spend a very cold evening in a ditch.

I’ve only been stranded once, while working at my Uncle’s gas station in high school. It was a Sunday and it began to snow early that afternoon. Customers pretty much stopped coming shortly thereafter and by early evening as the local intersections became impassable from blowing snow that accumulated too fast to be removed by plows. A driving ban was put in place as I sat on my stool reading some Stephen King novel (not the Shining, that would be too perfect, I think it was Eyes of a Dragon). Not that I had driven to work in the first place. But my ride certainly couldn’t pick me up and in the end I was ‘rescued’ all dramatic-like by my uncle on a snow-mobile. He handed me a helmet and we zoomed off through eerily empty village streets.

So good luck and be safe to may along-the-coast friends and family. Be smart and hunker down. With any luck the storm will blow out to sea and be forgotten like so many half-hearted twitter jokes.

Listening to: Crystal Castles “I’m Not in Love” [Featuring Robert Smith]

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