‘It’s just weather’
February 09, 2014 12:00 AM | 2049 views | 5 5 comments | 32 32 recommendations | email to a friend | print

No doubt we’ve had a weather adventure. We survived it and in spite of the complaints of a few, we did pretty well. Now comes the second guessing and the weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth.

There seems to be a neurotic need to lay the blame somewhere. I’m hard pressed to do that since all of us had the same information and reacted in whatever way we thought appropriate. We shouldn’t need a public official to tell us how to act and what to do when perilous weather is afoot. Many people pulled their children out of school without the government telling them to do so. Many people left work in plenty of time and some decided early that staying home was the most prudent course.

Most employers understood why employees wished to leave early or why they didn’t come to work. It’s a two-day inconvenience which comes every few years. Big deal!

Yes, there were people stranded and, to their credit, they handled it well. My brother spent the night in a Waffle House. A friend stayed inside a Kroger. My son-in-law was on the road over nine hours trying to get home and yet every person I spoke with handled this as an inconvenience and maintained their courage and sense of humor.

Then there are the sarcastic and uninformed comments from those who claim that Southerners cannot drive in the snow. Here’s an update for them: Oh yes we can!

What we have trouble negotiating is ice, and so does anyone not possessing special tires or special vehicles. Jeff Gordon on his best day couldn’t have gotten up and down some of our icy, hilly streets. It’s the ice, not the snow, that people have trouble with.

We get these storms every four or five years. The city shuts down, people stay home and the kids play in the street. We don’t need a five-year plan, nor do we need to beef up the snow machinery. We use what we have and work around the clock with the equipment that we have purchased for the average winter.

The lesson learned is to stay home when we are threatened by snow and ice. It doesn’t seem difficult to exercise that judgment. Nevertheless, when we get hit again in a few years, we’ll have the same situation. Some people may remember the storm of 2014, but my bet is that most will not, and when the day is done, we’ll be looking for someone to blame. We needn’t look to the mayor or governor. We should look in the mirror for answers to that one. But most of all, we should keep our sense of humor and perspective.

As Larry McMurtry’s character said to a friend complaining about the weather in The Streets of Laredo,

“It’s just weather.”

Mike Woodliff

Comments-icon Post a Comment
Consultant X
February 11, 2014

Let me add that most of these folks slipping and sliding around ATL are not - Southerners, rather, they are transplants from up north and for some reason THEY can't drive on Southern ice.
two cents
February 10, 2014
Absolutely! Your words represent what most of the people I know feel.
West Cobb
February 09, 2014
Very well said!
why not
February 09, 2014
You are right Mike we don't need no stinking big government! Eliminate the National Weather Service, FEMA, hurricane warnings, salting roads and so forth, eliminate those annoying tornado warning horns. Let everyone fend for themselves. Real cowboys don't need no stinking government, they just hunker down in their bunkhouse. "It's just weather".
Red Westside
February 13, 2014

@why not: What good are warnings if you don't heed them?

More plows would not have helped; we have too many cars on the road for proper snow and ice removal here. Staying home is the best policy when this stuff happens. See how well it worked this week?

The only people who got in accidents were people who didn't stay home.

There's no reason to buy hundreds of plows (at over $100,000 each) to use once every five years or so. al the plows in the world could not have plowed that ice last month, especially with all the roads turned into parking lots. Plows need room to work.

Further, those reflectors that are on the roads between the lanes cost about $40 each to replace. Knocking every last one of them out just to plow one time for marginal convenience is not really economically sound, is it? Replacing them woud cost millions if we plowed everywhere.

And you either plow everywhere or you plow almost nothing except Interstates, so people can get out of town. Why? Because: where do they go when they get off I-75? There will be traffic jams everywhere because people can't get up this hill or that other hill or because of the accident in front of them.

Driving on ice isn't the answer.

It is just weather. Stay home and enjoy electricity if you have it.
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