Recommended wine for today’s entry: Paul Hobbs Felino Malbec, Vina Cobos. It was listed as a best seller for 2009 at Englewood Wine Merchants. They describe it as “…multidimentional with exotic spices intertwined with ripe plum and coffee flavors. A powerful, firmly structured yet balanced Malbec that is black/fuchsia in color and perfumed with wild raspberry and bittersweet cocoa. The palate unfolds in velvety layers of plum, currant and anise. Notes of white pepper and minerals accompany fine-grained tannins on a long, memorable finish. It’s under $20 a bottle and the 2007 received 91 points from Parker.
There’s a reason Col. Klink used to threaten to send Sgt. Schulz — who already worked in a prisoner of war camp — to Siberia. Snow. I mostly dislike it because it’s cold. But I hate it for its side effects.
1. IT IS A LOT OF WORK. OK, all you moms who think there’s nothing cozier than having a snow day with the kids: do you really romp around in the snow, goodnaturedly toss snowballs at your kids, then retreat inside, build a big fire and sip homemade hot chocolate while cuddled on the sofa in your matching Snuggies?
Or is it more like this…you spend 30 minutes finding the outgrown snow togs, 20 minutes layering the kids in the clothes and 20 minutes digging the sled from the farthest point in the shed. Then you stand in the frigid gusts and scream over and over, “WATCH OUT FOR THE TREE, YOU IDIOT! T-U-R-R-R-N!”
Finally, after breaking up four fights over the only sled and wiping constantly flowing nostrils, you come inside, take off all the snow-covered garb, watch the snow melt into your hardwood floors and see the boards immediately expand into mushy paper mache floors, then you squat on the floor so that you can tackle the dogs as they come through, spend 15 minutes prying ice balls from between their pads, mop up the floor, throw the kids some Dunkaroos, set the clock ahead about an hour and crack open the wine?
Don’t answer. I know.
2. IT IS DANGEROUS. When I was 16, I lived on a little country road that was last on the list for plowing. I think it said, “If there is still ice by the time Derby comes around, let those people out.” But I had a friend named John, who always made it out to get my friend Janis and me.
So with like 8 of us, each wearing 6 layers of clothes, squished into I think a Malibu or something, we’d fly across icy roads to the nearest hill — OK, the farthest hill, because we 1)liked to live dangerously and 2)got a kick out of breaking the law and sledding on a golf course.
And it was fun for awhile, until someone showed up with a toboggan. What a DUMB invention. For one thing, you couldn’t T-U-R-R-R-N. For another, it was easy to overload the thing. Dangerous.
So of course, I plopped down, right in the middle of about 5 guys, mostly lineman from the high school football team. Let’s just say the weight capacity of an average elevator was about half what this toboggan was sporting.
The last thing I remember was screaming, “WAIT! N-O-O! MY KNEE IS TWISTED UNDERNEATH THIS DAMN THING!” Then, as Mr. Bill was popular at the time, “OH NOOOOOOOOO….”
That evening, someone’s mom got me to the end of my ice-covered road, where I limped home on twisted ligaments, leaning on Janis and singing, “When Johnny comes marching home again, hoorah, hoorah…”
I still have bruised armpits from a month on crutches. And I blame the snow.
3. IT IS HARD IMPOSSIBLE TO DRIVE IN. With the exception of my friend John, owner of the Malibu, no one is good at driving in snow. Especially people who say that they are good at driving in snow. They just drive faster than their brain can register the stupidity of their actions. At least when people used to use tire chains, the time-consuming, frustrating application process weeded out the people who WANTED to go somewhere rather than NEEDED to go somewhere.
Then again, those of us who know we don’t know how to drive in it tend to have some issues as well.
In 1985 we had an ice storm in Dallas. I was already in a rental car, having had a little issue with my company car, about which my boss was quite understanding. No problem, he said, but while it’s being fixed, we’ll have to get you a little less exciting rental. Sure, I said, quite agreeable I’m sure, because after all the car was free. And I’d probably just returned from a two martini lunch.
So when the ice came, I slid my way to my sporty Mitsubishi Galant, and timidly set out for work. I made it through one stop light and one right hand turn, then, on the 400-yard straightaway, I essentially slammed into a little blue car.
Because my dad was a lawyer, I knew not to admit fault, even though the other car was stopped and I was spinning like a top just prior to impact.
So I got out and put on my “I-am-a-busy-radio-sales-representative-who-is-VERY-MUCH-needed-at-work-this-morning-and-look-what-YOU’VE-gone-and-done” face.
But when the other driver got out, she had on this face: “I AM A MEDIA BUYER WHO IS PLACING A HALF MILLION DOLLAR AD SCHEDULE FOR FORD MOTORS TODAY. THE VERY MONEY YOU HAVE BEEN GROVELING FOR THE PAST TWO WEEKS.”
Dallas, in 1985, had about 2.8 million people living in it. I hate snow.
4. EVERYTHING GETS LOST IN THE SNOW. Everything except dog poop, which somehow always seems to stay right on top.
But everything else burrows down into the snow. Last year, my husband lost the snow shovel for most of a week in just this manner. We both went out and stomped around in little bitty steps until finally he stepped hard and whack! The handle popped out of the snow like a cobra.
I mostly hate snow for eating my Gumby. As a child, I was exceedingly creative. Tired of sledding and watching my brother careen into trees (not listening to mom’s instructions), I went to my friend Sherry Fugate’s house and we played this snow game: (I am proud to say that I made it up.) Stand six feet apart and throw Gumby and Pokey back and forth … at the SAME TIME! It was super fun and kept us busy for an embarrassing amount of time, but Sherry was no athlete and she missed Gumby on about throw number 75. Well, I looked for Gumby for the rest of the week. Then the snow melted and I canvassed neighbor’s porches, to see if someone’s dog had taken Gumby. Then I accused all the neighborhood kids of stealing Gumby. Then, friendless, we moved. Without Gumby. I think of him every time it snows.
Pokey was even sadder than me.
Well, that’s why I hate snow. But since I don’t mean to inflict my SADD on anyone else, here’s a pick-me-up: John Belski — our local meteorologist — just said 31 days til spring!