Archive for the ‘snow’ Tag

03/18/2023 “Bye-Bye Winter”   Leave a comment

For most of my life I’ve loved the winter and snow and cold weather. That being said this may have been the worse winter ever with continual losses of electric power, telephone coverage, and internet and that doesn’t even include my fractured ankle and finally being exposed to Covid-19. As global warming continues to wreak havoc on the weather patterns, there’s no normal anymore. Maybe it’s time for me to move further north and live above the arctic circle. The snow, ice, and cold remain consistent there.

Here are a few items of weather-related trivia that you might find interesting.

  • The Antarctic ice is forced out over the Ross Sea – a large inlet into Antarctica – in a layer hundreds of feet thick. It is called the Ross Ice Shelf (see above) and it’s area is about that of France.
  • At the height of various ice ages of the last million years, as much as thirty percent of all the land of the planet was covered with a thick layer of ice.
  • The first mention of an iceberg in world literature did not come until 800 A.D. An account of the travels of the Irish monk, St. Brendan in the north Atlantic, three centuries before, appeared around then and mentioned having sighted a “a floating crystal castle”,
  • An iceberg larger than Belgium was observed in the South Pacific in 1956. It was 208 miles long and 60 miles wide – the largest ever seen.
  • The temperature can become so cold in eastern Siberia that the moisture in a persons breath can freeze in the air and fall to the earth.
  • The most recent ice age reached it’s peak in 16,000 B.C., and it wasn’t until 8000 B.C. that the ice began it’s final retreat. In 6000 B.C. the Great Lakes were clear, and for the first time in 25,000 years Canada began to lose its ice cover. It was not until 3000 B.C. that the ice retreated to its present location; by then human beings were establishing cities throughout the Middle East.

After reading all of that, maybe this wasn’t such a bad year after all.

TIME FOR WARM TEMPERATURES AND HOT SAND BEACHES

01/23/2023 🌨️Winter Is Finally Here🌨️   3 comments

Living in northern New England requires a certain amount of love for snow. Skiers, skaters, snow boarders, and sledders love it here. Unfortunately, I’m none of those. I’m too clumsy for any winter sports. My favorite winter sport consists of a comfortable stool in a comfortable bar with a huge picture window looking out at the bottom of the ski run. The only way I could be injured under those circumstances is if some amateur skier loses control, crashes through the window, and knocks me off my stool. I can’t be too careful around here with all these snow bunnies and snow freaks running loose among us. I was up this morning a 4:30 am snow blowing my driveway. I just came in from the second trip because this damn snow just keeps falling. I thought I’d pass along some weather-related trivia to save me from losing my mind.

  • New Hampshire’s Mount Washington, located just a stone’s throw from this house is only 6288 feet in altitude, is often considered to have the worst weather in the world. The highest wind velocity ever recorded on Earth, 231 mi./h, swept across the summit of Mount Washington in April of 1934. More than 30 people have died there as a result of sudden changes in the weather.
  • Continental snow cover would advance to the equator, and the oceans would eventually freeze, if there were a permanent drop of just 1.6% to 2% in energy reaching the earth.
  • Because air is denser in cold weather, a wind of the same speed exerts 25% more force during the winter than it does during the summer.
  • Gigantic snowfalls may be crippling to big cities, but at least in New York City they have a tendency to fall mainly on the day’s most convenient for the urban population. A study of the biggest snows in the last 68 years shows that 54% of them fall on a Friday or Sunday when the cleanup can be accomplished with minimal inconvenience to those millions who must go to work and school.
  • In 1816, there was no summer in many areas of the world. In parts of New England, snow stayed on the ground all year. Crops there and in Europe were ruined. Volcanic dust from the eruption of Tomboro in Indonesia blocked the rays of the sun and was blamed for the unusual weather as well as for the red and brown snow that fell in the United States, Hungary, and Italy.

I’d love to chat A little more, but Mother Nature insists on filling my driveway with more snow. I’ll be snow blowing a few more times before this day is over.

MOTHER NATURE SUCKS!

10/04/2022 “Weather   Leave a comment

Living in Maine has given me a great appreciation for monitoring the weather. Our winter here starts in late October and extends itself to the end of April, a full six months of snow, sleet, and cold. If you’re not a lover of miserable weather, I recommend you never move here. Today’s posting contains random weather tidbits you haven’t likely heard before. Enjoy!

  • Lightning strikes the earth of hundred times every second, from the 1800 thunderstorms in progress at any given moment.
  • Rain contains vitamin B-12.
  • Observations of increased rain after US Civil War battles led to abortive experiments with weather control. Cannon volleys were fired into the clouds in order to induce rain.
  • Nearly 100 pollution-filled, weather-beaten years in New York have done more damage to Cleopatra’s Needle – a granite obelisk covered with hieroglyphics – than did 3500 arid years in Egypt.
  • 17 1/2 inches in circumference and 1.67 pounds in weight: that’s the size of the largest hailstone known to have fallen in the United States. It struck during a severe storm at Coffeyville, Kansas, in September of 1970.

  • In 1816, there was no summer in many areas of the world. In parts of New England, snow stayed on the ground all year. Crops there and in Europe were ruined. Volcanic dust from the corruption of Tomboro in Indonesia that blocked the rays of the sun has been blamed.
  • In living memory, it was not until February 18, 1979, that snow fell on the Sahara Desert. A half-hour storm in southern Algeria stopped traffic but within a few hours all of the snow had melted away.
  • Residents in a small village in Scotland schedule their television viewing according to the tides. At low tide, the nearby mudflats absorbed the broadcast “waves”. Thank God for cable.
  • On June 10, 1958, a tornado was crashing through El Dorado, Kansas. The storm pulled a woman out of her house and carried her 60 feet away. She landed, relatively unharmed, next to a phonograph record titled “Stormy Weather”.
  • Due to friction with the surface of the planet, the wind retards or accelerates the spin of the Earth very slightly. A peak in the seasonal slowing of the planet is most evident during the northern winter.

C’MON WINTER

08/17/2021 Snow Clutz   Leave a comment

I am the poster boy for clumsy. I love winter and I love the snow but I just can’t seem to walk all that well on it or even near it. Winter is right around the corner and I’ve been trying to get myself mentally prepared for what’s coming. Every year before the snow starts to fly I try to determine exactly when I will fall and what damage I’ll might do to myself. It isn’t a matter of when but how often.

As a kid growing up my friends and I spent a great deal of time in the woods exploring. Even then it was the joke amongst the group as to when I would fall and hurt myself. Everyone thought it was funny and for years I fulfilled my role as the group clutz. I thought it was funny too but only because I hoped at some point it would end, you know, after I got all grown up. Must have been a figment of my imagination.

Let’s spring forward to my college years. I attended Edinboro College in Pennsylvania which just happens to be located in one of the Great Lakes worst snow belts. I couldn’t catch a break, I was on my back a lot in those days and not in a good way.

I then enlisted in the Army in the sixties and ended up in the northern section of South Korea with howling Siberian winds and snow up in my butt. Again, guard duty became quite the adventure as I attempted to remain totally silent while sliding down an icy hill on my back in the middle of the night. I have a scar or two that are constant reminders of those fun days.

Then came the 1970’s. I was enroute home from a job in a really nasty ice storm. I stopped to clean my windows and to take a much needed whiz. I lost my footing while whizzing and slid approximately fifty yards down an icy hill ending up under a nearby parked car. I couldn’t walk for more than a week and spent Super Bowl Sunday propped up in a chair so I can watch the game. I think the Steelers won but I can’t be sure, but those pain pills were the best.

I could go on but I think I’ve made my point. I’ve had a few falls in the ensuing years like breaking a leg and then two years later breaking an arm. Once the snow begins to fly I can guarantee you at least two or three more falls as I wrestle with my snow blower in the driveway. Those kind of things are minor and don’t even bother me anymore. I really hope your winter goes better than the one I’m anticipating.

The Snow Clutz is signing off for now. LOL.

12-14-2017 Pre-Christmas OMG’s   1 comment

It’s been a number of months since I last visited my blog and I’m not entirely sure why.  I suppose it’a mixture of laziness, apathy, and the holiday season that’s approaching.  I’ve been wanting to write but I don’t want it to be more of the same crap you’re hearing and seeing in other media. The “Trump is the devil.” nonsense is wearing really thin except for a few braindead liberals and diehard Democrats.

There’s a time and place for everything but the last thing we need is the steady media drumbeat of negativety during the holidays.  I’d much rather enjoy the season with my family than listening to an incredibly biased media laying hours and hours of propaganda and fake news on me.  Life is just too goddamn short.

We’ve had out first two snow falls for 2017 and the snowblower came through as expected. I’m going to try very hard not to do the normal fall-on-my-ass routine that seems to occur every year.  I’ll be staying in the house as much as possible, I’ll keep nice and warm, and have a drink or two to calm my nerves.  Before I know it Spring will be here once again.

So Merry Christmas to family and friends and anyone bored enough to read this blog.

I’ve also been giving some serious thought to my New Year’s resolutions for 2018.  I’ll do a quick review of 2017 just after Christmas and then post 2018’s early in January.

Stay healthy . . . Stay warm . . . Kiss the kids and grandkids . . . Hug your pets.

 

 

 

 

 

02-26-2016 Journal–Turkeys, Art & a Dirty Joke!   Leave a comment

This winter weather here in Maine remains fickle. Fifty degrees one day, then fog the next, ten degrees the third day, and freezing rain and black ice the next.  I’ve pretty much given up listening the the forecasters because they apparently don’t have much of a clue either.

With February almost gone we’re within six weeks or so from seeing winter start to fade away.  Overall it’s been one of the better winters since I moved to Maine. Temperatures were mild up until Christmas and we’ve only had one snow storm worth mentioning.  Without a doubt the best part is how much money we’ve saved on home heating oil.  Warmer temperatures and a serious drop in price from $3.40 a gallon to a $1.35 have kept a smile on our faces all winter.  We’ll probably end up saving between five and eight hundred dollars in heating costs this season.

We took a ride through the surrounding area last week just to see what was happening.  As always here in Maine we stumbled on wild turkeys a number of times.  With most of the snow cover already melting they’re able to feed in more locations than usual.  Here they are . . .

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Maybe they’re the true harbingers of Spring and not that dumbass gopher in Pennsylvania.

With the rediscovery of my creative juices I’ve been working on two projects steadily for the last week.  I’ve finished one and in another few days I’ll finish another.  I won’t post too much of either until they’re both complete.  Here’s a shot of a two square inch portion of the first. It’s a little strange but that’s how I roll.

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Just for a laugh I thought I’d send out a truly tasteless joke.  It made me laugh out loud for some reason but it’s sure to irritate a few of the ladies out there. That’s too bad . . . but here it is anyway.

A women went to apply for a job as a truck driver. Not too keen on the idea, the personnel manager for the trucking company said, “You have to be pretty tough to cut it as a truck driver, you know.”  I’m tough, I really am,” said the eager applicant. “Well, do you smoke and drink?” “Yes of course.” “Do you cuss a lot?” asked the interviewer. “You bet you asshole, “ said the woman. “I cuss like a lumberjack.” “So have you ever been picked up by the fuzz?”  “Well, no,” she admitted, “but I’ve been swung around by the tits a couple of times.”

Please no moaning . . . everyone needs a dirty joke once in a while even if it is a little corny.

C’MON SPRING

02-16-2016 Journal–New & Annoying Technology!   1 comment

Are you a technology lover?  Some people just put up with all of the new technology but really aren’t all that into it. I’m just the opposite. I love any and all technology and do my best to keep up with things as they progress. I never thought it could happen but I came upon some technology yesterday that annoyed and irritated me more than I thought possible.

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My better-half and I were out and about enjoying the single digit temperatures and decided to do lunch at Applebee’s before returning home. Normally I’m an Applebee’s fan but they’re doing something now that just makes me a little crazier than usual. They’ve decided to put their customers to work by placing a small computer at each table. It just sits there and flashes advertisements and screensavers  the entire time your ordering and trying to eat.  They attempt to entice you to play some stupid trivia games so they can add $1.99 to your bill and keep you occupied while waiting for your food to arrive.

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The place was very busy and there appeared to be a serious shortage of waitresses. We were made to wait much longer than normal for our order resulting in a barrage of apologies from the nearby bartender and a roving manager. We sat patiently for quite a while but then I began to get a bit annoyed. Eventually the food arrived and thank God it was delicious.  Just as we were finishing our meal the bartender stopped at our table to ask the obligatory question they always ask, "How was everything?"  At the same time she nonchalantly dropped the bill on the table and quickly walked away.  Little did I know that they expected us to pay the bill using that little terminal at our table.

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I’m a firm believer that people working in restaurants should earn their TIPS. If you’re rude, annoying, and slow you won’t get a TIP from me. If your on top of your game and do everything just right I’ll fork over a 20% TIP every time.  I’ve been told that TIPS is short for "To Improve Personal Service" and I expect decent service before donating any of my hard earned cash.

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I was then directed to just swipe my credit card through the terminal at my table and follow the menus to pay my bill.  As the final bill was displayed I noticed a 20% TIP had been automatically added on.  I found that magic menu button that allowed me to dial back the TIP to only 10%. While the food was delicious the service was slow and I had to do all the work of checking myself out therefore no 20% TIP.

Then the stupid computer asked if I wanted a receipt printed out or to have one emailed to me. The last thing I need is another company adding me to their email list so they can pelt me with a stream of unwanted food alerts. I indicated I wanted a printed receipt so I could verify the amount I’d paid before leaving the restaurant. I was then required to visit the bar to the only register where receipts were being printed. I was made to feel like some sort of primitive Neanderthal who still needed an actual paper receipt and couldn’t handle the technology.  Since I’ve seen too many errors on bills over the years I don’t assume they’re always correct. This Neanderthal needs to see any possible discrepancies immediately and not a couple of hours later in an email.

I have a proposal for all of these so-called progressive restaurants.  In the future I will enter, seat myself, and order my meal from the computer on my table.  When it’s ready I can be alerted by the kitchen staff on the terminal, walk back, and retrieve my food. When I’m done I can take my dishes to the kitchen, pay the bill on the computer and have my receipt emailed.  Then I would certainly expect a 20% reduction on my bill for all of the fine service I’d rendered.  I’d never have to talk to or see any semi-interested employees or gushy and  insincere managers. I’d just eat my food and get the hell out.  What do you think about that?

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I now have to admit that there is some technology that just plain sucks. There I’ve said it, once and for all. And for all of those Chili’s restaurants out there, I see you’ve also started this same nonsense as Applebee’s with your cutsy table computers.  You’ll probably be seeing  much less of my business as well.

The customer is always right or have you just forgotten that.

2-14-2016 Journal–Avery, Kaiden & Alvin’s Chipmunks!   Leave a comment

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It seems that Winter has finally caught up with us. Up until now it’s been a relatively mild season as far as the snowfall goes. The temps have been up and down but noting too frigid until this weekend. Unlike many of the other northern states we expect to receive a lot of snow but the   temperatures usually don’t go much lower than ten degrees during the coldest months. 

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My father had a quaint old saying for cold weather like we’re seeing this weekend. He always described it as  "cold as a well diggers asshole" and if my mother was nearby it was "as cold as a well diggers elbow".  Below zero temps with a good healthy wind were all of that and a bag of chips.

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Last night my better-half and I spent our night at home babysitting the grandchildren.  We had the good sense to stay inside and not be roaming around in sub-zero temperatures.  The house was warm and cozy, the toddlers were reasonably well behaved, and another viewing of Alvin & the Chipmunks was in the offing (Just shoot me now).

Their parents were having a Valentines Day date night and weren’t expected to return until eleven.  Just as the boys were finally falling asleep and Alvin and the Chipmunks were coming to an end they showed up much earlier than expected. The current temperature at the time was –2 degrees with a wind-chill of -15. It apparently was just too damn cold for them to do much of anything and they’d called it a night.

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It’s now the next morning and I’m almost ready to leave this warm bed.  Hot coffee might give me enough energy to pick up all  the toys scattered throughout the house before having my bowl of hot oatmeal.  I imagine I’ll be stuck in the house for another day or two which doesn’t make me very happy.

I’m moving slower than usual due to a late night awakening where I spent two hours playing X-Box LEGO Star Wars, reading three chapters of my latest book, eating a cookie, and returning to bed at 5am.  This insomnia I’ve been suffering with for the last two months is just killing me.

01-08-2016 Journal–Maine Woodstock 2016!   Leave a comment

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‘1969 was an interesting year.’

How to kill an entire Sunday.  Let me tell you how I did it.  Yesterday my better-half was scheduled to work and I was looking forward to a day of peace and quiet and time to work on MY projects. How could I even dare to imagine something like that, I should have known better.

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‘Who loves you Janis’

Unfortunately some months ago I made a commitment to her concerning the laptop she’d just purchased.  I promised I’d help her setup the new laptop by transferring all of her photographs from the old to the new. This should teach me a valuable lesson for the future. Never volunteer for something unless you’re absolutely sure you know what your getting into. I thought I knew but apparently I was once again clueless.

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‘The spooky Doors.’

I cleared off the kitchen table, fired up both computers, made a pot of coffee, and settled in for what I thought would be an hour or two of work. Oh how stupid I am.  Little did I know just how many photo’s she had scattered throughout that hard drive of her old computer. She had pictures from multiple cameras going back six years. There were videos from both her IPhone and IPad and I kid you not . . . more than ten thousand pictures taken with an assortment of past and present cell phones. She apparently has never discovered the use of the delete button.  It was a trash dump of photo’s placed on that laptop with absolutely no attempt at organization whatsoever.

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‘Jumpin Joe Cocker’

As always I fall back to the old adage “When someone gives you lemons, make lemonade.”  I found my own IPod and plugged it in, put on the headset and spent the next seven hours having a 60’s Flashback Sunday.  I started out by listening to the entire three days of Woodstock with the original recordings.  That required me to immediately switch from just coffee to coffee laced with Drambuie.  I then cranked up Joe Cocker, The Band, The Yardbirds, The Hollies, Janis Joplin, The Doors, and even the Greatest Hits of War. 

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‘My favorite band, The Band. ‘RIP Levon’

At the end of the day I’d transferred no less than twenty-five thousand pictures to the new laptop and was suffering from a serious coffee buzz overlapped with a Drambuie buzz.  There’s nothing better than Drambuie so after I finished transferring all the files I stopped drinking the coffee. From that point on it was Drambuie, Amy Winehouse  and me.  What a great way to spend the day and complete a tiresome project.

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‘Sweet Amy’

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‘Even sweeter . . . Drambuie on the lips.’

Today I’m back to what I’d call normal but still showing signs of a rather interesting hangover. For some reason my first cup of coffee this morning tasted strangely like Drambuie. How odd! I guess that’s one of the effects of time travel back to the sixties. Along with rocking out, a sore throat from all of the singing along, and being able to return home with no arrests or STD’s to show for it.

That’s what I’d call a good day in any decade.

02-06-2016 Journal – February Snow!   Leave a comment

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I awakened yesterday to another snow storm that eventually dropped more than ten inches on us. It was one of those snows that seem to stick to every surface, covering trees and bushes and turning the area into a wonderland. It’s one of the few winter things that can get me to leave the house. As you can see my camera operates just fine in the snow.

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Again this morning I discovered even more snow had fallen. I heard the snowplows a number of times during the night as they attempted to keep the roads clear enough to use. The last thing I did before going to bed last evening was to crank up my snowblower and clear the driveway.

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My better-half was scheduled for work at 5:30 am and the last thing I wanted was to be awakened early today just to clear snow from the driveway.  It’s 09:00 am now and I haven’t heard from her so I can assume you made it to work in one piece.  This photo was taken early this morning just as the sun was coming up.

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It’s just as beautiful out today as yesterday. The temperature dropped overnight which kept the snow sticking to the trees.  Hopefully I’ll get motivated later this morning and get my butt outside for more pictures. Since I’m slowly recovering from this flu I can start getting my life back to normal once again.

I WOULD HAVE LOVED THIS WEATHER AS A KID

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