Wednesday, February 02, 2011

A Taste Of The Great White North

All of you guys who are getting absolutely hammered by snow in the Northeast will enjoy this.

For once, winter is kicking the shit out of us, in a relative sense.

This morning was the coldest temperature in twenty years. Fifteen degrees (Fahrenheit). It's only 21F right now, so the forecast high of 32F is just a pleasant fiction (or damnable lie, depending on  at this point.

Still, though, big deal, right? That's what I thought, until Eli 9.6 came in this morning at 6:40, shined a flashlight beam on me, and said, "Dad, power's out."


The rest of the state is so cold, and so much power is being consumed, that some emergency board of something or other declared that we would have rolling blackouts to help stabilize the power grid.

"Rolling blackouts" is a misnomer, really, because what it really means is "your power goes off at random." We had three blackouts this morning, each one for over 45 minutes.

15F is no big deal when the electricity is flowing. With no power, though, that shit goes up to an entirely new level.

So when the third blackout hit, after I stopped cursing due to exhaustion, I just went to the rink early. Skated really poorly, but I got my work in, and it was still warmer than being outside.

Ironically, I bought winter clothing just to wear when I sat in the rink for Eli's hockey practice, and today, I'm wearing most of it. Without that, I'd have nothing but a medium-weight coat to wear.

Even so, though, I'm cold. I don't think I understood until today that a wind chill of 20F may be cold, but a wind chill of 0F is another thing entirely. I felt like I was spreadeagled nude on an ice block, and believe me, that image is every bit as disturbing to me as it is to you.

It's supposed to be 15F again tonight, with more blackouts, so I did what any reasonable person would do when the power came back on: plugged all my shit in to charge it up. Yes, I'm officially the worst person in the world for doing that, but my DSi and netbook have to be charged for me to survive.

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