I was able to get away with staying at home all day without having to cope with Winter Storm Linus – the heavy snowfall that swept through the Midwestern United States this weekend and whacked Chicago with potentially a foot of snow within a day-long period.
LIKE MANY OTHERS, I could not help but remember the old Peanuts cartoon where Linus was one of Charlie Brown’s most loyal friends, unlike older sister Lucy who was amongst Charlie’s biggest antagonists.
If this were Winter Storm Lucy, I’d probably have had some business dealing that absolutely had to get done, and I’d wind up stuck in the snow somewhere!
As it was, my brother tried to make a short drive, and wound up stuck in the snow for a short time – although he eventually was able to get his car out of the snow and parked back in his usual spot where he leaves it.
As a result, he wound up spending the bulk of the day catching up on rest – while also enjoying caldo de pollo (a rather elaborate Mexican-style chicken soup) he had made just the day before.
SUNDAY WOUND UP being the perfect day for leftovers – even though the weather wound up costing him a chance to go to a Super Bowl party.
Which may be the biggest local casualty of this particular storm; how many people had plans to go to one of these parties to see the Seattle Seahawks/New England Patriots football championship matchup only to be unable to make it because of the snowfall? Then again, how many people were unable to see the game because their electricity died (mine was out for about three hours during the afternoon)?
Or worse, how many people had pizza delivery jobs and wound up having to cope with the mess while trying to deliver a pie or two to someone’s Super Bowl celebration aspirations – which usually are more about eating junk food with friends and getting worked up over over-produced and over-rated commercials than it is about watching anything noteworthy from an athletic perspective! Perhaps Lou Malnati's had the right idea in deciding to close early Sunday -- even though it should have been one of their busiest days of the year!
Personally, I became aware of just how bad the snow was when I woke up Sunday and did my early-morning e-mail check to see that aides to Gov. Bruce Rauner had sent me a message informing me that his public appearance at St. Pius V parish in the Pilsen neighborhood was cancelled.
THE NEW GOVERNOR was supposed to go to Sunday morning mass with Lt. Gov. Evelyn Sanguinetti – my guess is that he wanted to attend a Latino-oriented church with his Cuban-American running mate to show some sort of Latino solidarity.
For a politician to give up that kind of photo op means it must have been ugly weather. Although Rauner did include the Illinois Department of Transportation advisory that people avoid driving their cars on Sunday, “unless it’s necessary.”
Officially, the National Weather Service reported there were 8.5 inches of snow at O’Hare International Airport by Noon, with snow continuing to fall. Although it seems the farther south one goes, the heavier the pileup becomes.
Looking out my own front window while I write this commentary, I see a nearby “For Rent” sign totally covered in a pile of snow! Although we’re still at a stage where the snowfall looks clean and pretty.
AS PEOPLE TRY to drive through it, the snow will take on that dingy, dirty shade that we all eventually will have to try to shovel away. Although various weather forecasts claim we’re in for sunny skies in future days.
Here’s hoping that this truly melts away rather quickly and that “Linus” becomes just a faint memory a week from now.
Although perhaps having a Super Bowl Sunday with a storm named “Lucy” might have been most appropriate. Because we all remember Charlie Brown’s repeated attempts at a field goal.
Did she ever let Charlie Brown actually kick that ball?