The second Nor’easter of the winter season has ravaged the Boston region, dumping nearly 18 inches of wet, heavy snow with blizzard-like ferocity and leaving the majority of us housebound. “You can see that the roads behind me are empty,” says the on-the-scene television reporter, standing in front of Route 9 near Framingham. “People are heeding the Governor’s plea to stay off the roads and let the plows do their work!” Of course, all employees of local news stations obviously ignored the Governor and headed to work to devote themselves to around-the-clock storm coverage, not only getting in the way of the plows but also getting in my way to watch Judge Judy. Instead, I’m stuck with an infinite parade of perky reporters, standing in front of piles of snow while pontificating repeatedly and banally: “This is wet, heavy, sticky, problematic snow!”
And they repeatedly used the word “thundersnow” like two-year olds who just learned to say “poop.”
I worked at home from 6am until noon, when I tossed aside my laptop to head out into the thundersnow’s aftermath to start digging out the driveway. Staring at the expanse of mud-heavy snow, for a split second, I hated snow, I hated winter, I wanted to sell all my skis and move to San Diego. And that’s before my forearms burned effusively from the strain of lifting shovel-fulls over to the front yard. Fucking thundersnow!
Soon Mr. Pinault emerged to excavate the end of the driveway from the plow truck’s wrath, and our downstairs neighbor came out to help. “I’m seriously thinking about buying a snow blower,” she said, which is what she says every time we meet to dig out the driveway. I don’t say much, as I hardly think the piddly size of our driveway warrants a snowblower. In fact, I generally look forward to the task of shoveling if I’m going to be stranded at home for the day. Six inches, ten inches, it’s a joy to dig my shovel into. And the more she ranted about the snow blower, the more I became resentful to the idea of a snow blower taking away my right to bear a shovel — aside from light gardening and occasional trailwork, this is really my only time to engage in purposeful manual labor — and I began to almost savor sweating over the effort of moving inches upon inches of wet, heavy, sticky, problematic thundersnow.
Thundersnow is a recent phenomonen, no? We certainly didn’t have thundersnow when I was young. Stephen Colbert noticed this in 2006, and theorized that God is pissed…