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“Snowpocalypse 2011 – Hothlanta”

Posted in Crazy Wisdom on Thursday, January 13, 2011 at 1:06 pm by flerly.

Oh woe are we, trapped desperately in our home while our streets are covered in ice and snow.

Of course, with the AWD engaged on the Suzuki, we could actually get out, not that we needed to. The house was well stocked with groceries, and we never lost power or water. So it was more like a week to appreciate all the crap you already have to do in the way of cable, dvds, internet, game systems, etc., play with cats, enjoy the warm gas-logs, watch a dozen bad old movies. I even browsed books online at one point and had two new ones sent to my kindle app in moments. The Social Network came out on DVD, so we finally saw it.

But still, we get stir-crazy — a testament, no doubt, to the overstimulated state of being we live in.

So we ventured out to return a movie. Then we ventured out to check on Motley. We even made an attempt at going to the climbing gym, but so had everyone else and without their back-lot open due to ridiculous iced-over steep hill, we didn’t have a place to park, and weren’t anxious to leave the car by the side of the road.

Didn’t spot any gravel or salt or dozing evidence anywhere around us in Stone Mountain, but once we made it to the interstate it was being scraped, and the bridges were pretty well graveled and handled. Traffic was moving, in fewer lanes than usual and actually closer to the speed limit than usual.

Still, though, people are retarded, and we worry more about other people on the road than ourselves. Over by the climbing gym Is aw a car try to hop into an iced-over turn lane and head into an apartment complex after being on a fairly clear road. He didn’t slow down nearly enough, just hopped into the lane where he then couldn’t really slow down, yet still tried to make his turn and went into the concrete around the entrance sign.  Dumbass.

Some bridges and ramps really only had one lane clear, but that didn’t stop people who wanted to go faster from trying to zip around you in another lane and give you a good honk — even as they then discovered their lack of control on the new driving surface of the unclear lane. At least on this day I could curse other drivers with “I hope you spin out of control!” and know they might actually. 

And you really couldn’t suggest that people not drive and talk on their phones, even as they spin off the road doing so — it’s a God given right, or something. As is being able to take your truck, any truck, big, small, 4×4 or not, out in this weather. It’s a right. Of course, we then have the right to laugh at your truck when the back wheels have slid into the ditch and you don’t have the weight in the back for traction to get it out again.

The news on Monday had an interview with a BMW owner whose car had burst into flames at a gas station off of Windy Hill. Some spectator had filmed that part of it which hit YouTube as “guys car burst into flames when touches snow!” but the news had actually been filming along that road and caught the whole story.

The man had come up the exit ramp from the interstate onto 285 and tried to power his way up  the icy hill by holding the pedal to the floor for several minutes. Not only did he not make it, sitting in place spinning his wheels fiercely as smoke poured out, but when he eventually stopped and went backward into the gas station to park, his car burst into flames from the effort.

In his interview, the driver told the news “When I came off the interstate I just lost traction, and I don’t know why.”

Could it have been the solid sheet of ice that was the road? And we’re not talking black-ice here — where, as Cathy clarified, the ice is clear and the road is black — that might just look like wet road. Our conditions in Atlanta are a few inches of fluffy snow topped with an inch or two of solid ice. So, it’s white-ice. It’s not stealthy. It doesn’t look like road, because you can’t see road. People are getting stuck on medians and hitting curbs or ditches trying to figure out where the road might be.

So, was that beemer driver a complete idiot or just driving distracted by a cell phone or other device? Doesn’t matter. All that matters that you know that they’re out there — stupid people, distracted people — and they’re in just as much of a hurry to get from A to B as usual, despite the conditions.

In essence, I’m thankful we have a home and a life where we didn’t really have to be anywhere during the worst of this week, and could still stay on top of our work. I consider us lucky for surviving the couple little forays we did make into the outside world.


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