It’s April, so in most of the United States, snow is done for the winter. Not Chicago, though. I grew up in Chicago, and April is the month when Mother Nature likes to fuck with your head. “It’s 80 out! Isn’t it beautiful? Go ahead, take the snow tires off of your car! Start getting your lawn ready! Spring is here and Summer is on the way! … … … MUWAHAHAHA!!! 18 inches of snow, TAKE THAT YOU STUPID FUCKING HUMANS!” Every fucking year.
I grew up loving snow. I loved the look of a fresh blanket of pure white snow covering the world in the morning, the soft crunch of snow under my boots, the fun of building a snowman, or sledding down a hill… Even when my father figured out that I weighed more than a shovelful of snow and set me to clear the driveway, I still loved snow. And I miss it now that I live in the desert.
There are only two things about snow I don’t like. The first is how when you’re a kid you decide you are going to build the snow fort to end all snow forts, a solid white Fort Knox, you get all bundled up, race outside, pick a good spot and… dry snow. Dry, unworkable snow. Fuck you, dry snow, you are USELESS to me!
The other thing I don’t like about snow is all this pussy falling down in delicate little flakes bullshit. That is not how it should work. If the forecast calls for two feet of snow, that’s what you should get. You should be standing there, talking to your neighbor, saying “I heard we were looking at getting two feet…” when all of a sudden… KA-WHOMP! TWO MOTHERFUCKING FEET OF SNOW, BITCHES! All at once, just WHAMMO! How awesome would that be? I would sit in my car near a playground just to see kids get clobbered by a decent snowfall.
But other than those two things, I still really love snow. People whine about it a lot, though. “It’s makes it really tough to drive!” If by “tough” you mean “insanely fun”, then I agree. I remember a friend picking me up on his way to a liquor store so that we could go to a party at his place. We’d just had six inches of snow, the snowplows hadn’t come out our way yet, he had bald tires, and he was on mushrooms. That drive wasn’t tough at all, it was a fucking BLAST! At no point was the nose of the car ever pointing in the direction in which we were traveling. It was like a grown up version of the Tilt-O-Whirl, only you could smoke in it.
There are a lot of other cool things about snow:
- Snow Porn – Who has built a snowman and hasn’t had the urge to make it a little more anatomically correct? I remember doing this in college. “Hey, look, that snow landed in my yard, and who fucking cares if I decided to mold it into an eight foot cock? Yeah, I did the butt-fucking snowmen too, what of it? I know there’s a day care center right down the street! Look, if your kids have a problem with it, you can just keep them inside until spring, ok?”
- Surprise July Snowballs – Ever actually put a snowball in the freezer and patiently wait until the summer just so you can take it out and bean someone in the face with it? Well guess what? I have. And you know what happens? The freezer sucks all of the moisture out of the snowball and turns it into a hard, lethal rock of a thing that will hit a kid in the head much like a cue ball would. It’ll scramble his brains and deform his fucking face. Hi-larious!
- Writing Things In The Snow – When I was five, I remember writing out a note to a friend of mine in twenty foot high letters by stomping around in my back yard. My mom started laughing because I was so focused on making the letters legible that I fucked up the spelling. “Hi Brain!” Yeah, really funny mom. It’s a good thing I was too young to write out, “Shut the fuck up!”
- Writing Things In The Snow With Urine – Ladies, unless you have the agility and control of a belly-dancer, this is primarily a task for the guys. And guys, you know exactly what I’m talking about. I do not know one guy who hasn’t done this at least once in their life. You usually start off with writing your name, then graduate into curse words, and finally you get creative with it. “Free Lemon Snow Cones!” – That’s the sign of a full bladder and a creative mind. The only thing bad about this activity is that it is hard to deny you peed in the snow in front of the police station when it’s basically your own DNA spelling out your name.
- Trying To Kill Yourself Sledding – There was a guy in the subdivision that I grew up in who splurged for a heated driveway, which is pretty extravagant now, let alone in the 1970’s. The great, although unintended thing about this was that the runoff from the driveway ran into and froze on a trail carved through some woods with railroad ties. In effect, it created a bobsled run for suicidal grade schoolers, and we were all over that shit. You’d start in the woods, gather a frightening amount of speed in a heartbeat, and got spit out into the guy’s back yard where you were faced with a decision: Stay the course and thread the needle through two massive oak trees, or bail out to the right. You had maybe a half of a second to make a decision, and we made the wrong decision many, many times. No helmets either. … What was I talking about?
- Putting Snow Where It Shouldn’t Be – When I lived in the dorms, there was this one prick named Wade who was just an unconscionable asshole. One of the things he chose to be a prick about was that he not only laid carpet down in his room over the hard floor like everyone else, but he put padding under it too. Then he’d come into your room and say something douche-tastic like, “Hey so I… What the… What is up with your carpet? Oh. Yeah. You didn’t put padding down. Man, how do you live like this?” So one day we packed the outside of his door frame with a solid wall of snow and then got him to come out of his room. The snow didn’t hit him as we had planned, but it went all over his precious carpet. “You guys! You can’t get the padding wet or it starts to smell!” A week later, we were coming home from the bars, filling up Big Gulp cups with piss and sluicing it under his door, an idea we wouldn’t have had were it not for snow. (Lest you think this guy was an innocent victim, he was an uber-douche. A year after the carpet shenanigans, he was arrested for loitering. In a girls’ bathroom. In a church.)
- Putting Snow Where It Shouldn’t Be Part II – Do you want to know an incredibly simple, yet effective way of fucking with someone? Wait until the overnight forecast calls for a foot of snow or more, and then unroll every window on that person’s car.
- Having Sex In The Snow – I accomplished this feat with a girl I was dating as kind of a dare/scientific experiment we talked ourselves into. It was cold. Very cold. And it was very hard to concentrate enough to be able to do anything, let alone conclude. But we persevered and accomplished our goal. (USA! USA! USA!) We then agreed to never do that again because it was profoundly stupid and not that much fun. Still, having sex in the snow is better than not having sex in the snow. (Oh, and FYI: The imprint you leave after having sex in the snow makes it obvious to anyone who sees it that someone was having sex in the snow. That alone made the frozen genitalia worth it.)
- Driving In Snow – I already mentioned my mushroom-laden run to the liquor store. That incident was made possible by the fact that every time it snowed, we took our cars out to do donuts and power slides. We had fucking control over those vehicles. One of our favorite places to do this was in the parking lot of a church, surrounded by houses. I’m sure the neighbors didn’t appreciate seeing headlights go spinning past their windows a couple of hundred of times at 3:00 AM, but we found it hilarious.
- Architectural Projects In The Snow – When you’re eighteen years old, not old enough to drink in the bars, and you find yourself with nowhere to party in February, you party in your car. But that shit gets old, and so sometimes you get creative. I knew a couple of guys who got an older brother to rent a U-Haul so they could party in it. Then they found out that U-Haul’s aren’t heated, and that when the cops hear coughing and laughing from inside a parked U-Haul, they tend to want you to open up and explain yourselves. A friend and I decided one time that if Eskimos could build an ice cave to stay warm in, so could we. The idea was that we’d burrow out a small hole in a drift and get into it, allowing our body heat to lightly melt the interior, which would then freeze and harden. Then we’d be able to burn a small candle for warmth while we smoked a joint and had a few beers. The idea itself is workable if you happen to be Inuit and skilled in winter survival. We were not Inuits, and we were hardly skilled enough to operate a joint at the point in time that this crazy fucking idea made sense to us. And so our snow cave was really more of a snow pit with two stoned and laughing guys in it. Still, it was fucking fun.
And that last sentence pretty much sums up snow for me. Any kind of idiocy is made that much more fun by the presence of snow. I miss snow, and I hope to live in a place where snow is a lot more common than it is here in the desert. Just not in an ice cave, because I can’t build those for shit.