Thursday, March 13, 2014

We're Number 3!!! Can we go higher?

So much for the spring-like weekend!
Snowfall on the marquee?

We got hit with a massive late-winter snowstorm (officially 3.6 inches, but some parts of the metro area experienced with nearly double that) that put the Chicago-area snowfall total this winter to just over 79 inches.

THAT OFFICIALLY MAKES the winter of 2013-14 the third-most when it comes to snowfall in the amount of time that records have been kept.

This is in March, where I'll admit I often tune my television to the MLB-TV channel to catch parts of spring training baseball games. Not that I care who wins these exhibitions filled with minor leaguers delusional enough to think they can make the "big club" this spring.

It's more because I like to see that there's a place where the weather is sunny and clear and winter snow isn't much of a concern.

But as I saw pointed out on the Weather Channel Wednesday morning, the second-most amount of snow for a Chicago winter was that one of 1978-79 (I was in junior high school back then). With just over 82 inches.

ARE WE GOING to top that mark? Could we become Number Two. Could we get another blast (we'd need roughly 10 more inches) that would make us Number One in something?

For the record, winter has exactly one more week to go. Or so the calendar says. Because March 20 is the point at which the planet Earth reaches the point in its rotation that the northern hemisphere is too far along for there to be much more winter weather.

Although those of us who have lived here our entire lives know it's not unheard of for there to be an early April snowfall. Who's to say we couldn't get a few more inches?
Snow taller than MJ? But he could leap it

This is one record that I'm sure nobody wants to see surpassed. We'd be more than content to have this winter be Number Three. Heck, we'd have been happy if it could have remained Number Four!

PERSONALLY, I COULD have done without the Wednesday morning sight of the aforementioned Weather Channel having one of their reporter-types standing out on State Street next to a pile of pizza boxes (deep dish, of course) piled up to 79 inches high.

Taller than the reporter-type (who hit as many cliches as possible by doing her broadcast standup in front of the Chicago Theater with its famed marquee) herself.

All she would have had to do was point out that the official snowfall (as measured at O'Hare International Airport) is about an inch taller than the famed Michael Jordan himself.

Then again, she may be the type who believes that basketball was invented by LeBron James.

PERSONALLY, I FEEL fortunate about this latest storm.

I didn't have to be anyplace Tuesday night when the storm started. By the time I had to leave on Wednesday, the official winter storm warning was over and assorted municipal public works crews had cleared the streets to the point where they were as passable as they could hope to be.

I just had to dodge idiot drivers who just don't seem to get that weather impacts the way one ought to drive.

This particular winter is one I will not forget. For all I know, some three or four decades from now I'll be old and decrepit and perhaps suffering from Alzheimer's Disease without a clue about who I am or anything I ever did -- but I'll be rambling on and on about how cold and sloppy it has been the past few months.

NOTABLE BECAUSE I usually don't get bothered by the cold temperatures (I just put on another layer to keep warm). It is the snow and the slop it creates that bothers me more; in part because I detest having to shovel it -- I feel fortunate to have a landlord these days who is attentive to his property.

But the repeated days of the Arctic-like temperatures made life all the more complicated this season. It was cold enough to be notable that we weren't just in a typical 10-degree winter temperature. Twenty-below is not easily forgotten! It would be creation's great joke to give us one last burst of snow before finally ending for the year.

What are the chances of a significant snowfall on March 31 (a.k.a., Opening Day for the Chicago White Sox)? Reminiscent of the first home game the Toronto Blue Jays ever played in 1977.
I'm amazed Bill Veeck never thought of having his ball club playing in the snow in their  uniform shorts. That would have been a memorable stunt!

Remember the sight of the Sox in their Bill Veeck-era uniforms dodging snowflakes coming down during the ballgame? It's a good thing the ball club left their shorts behind that particular day.


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