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February 12, 2010

In Defense of DC-Area Snow Wusses

IMG_1679 As we residents of the DC Metro area freak out about the snow, the snow!, OMG! THE SNOW!, people who live in more regularly snowy parts of the country laugh and laugh and laugh at us.

"We get that much snow every winter," they say. "We don't cancel school and work every time it snows," they say. "You guys are wusses," they say.

Okay. Fair enough. But I do have a few rebuttals. First of all, you may get this much snow on the ground every year, but does it all fall within five days? Yeah, I didn't think so.

As someone who grew up in a place with snowy winters (Utah), I also think the sheer level of panic that comes before each snowstorm is a little ridiculous. But here's the thing: The DC area is uniquely situated in that we don't get enough snow to justify huge snow-coping budgets, yet we still get enough that it is a problem when it happens. All the snow-removal budgets in the area were already blown after the first big snow in December. We just don't expect to have to worry about snow as much as we have this year.

Also? Just because you are used to feet upon feet of snow each year, we are not. After our last snow, this officially became DC's snowiest winter on record. I think we deserve a little bit of leeway for getting so much more snow than we are used to. Say, two inches of snow is not a big deal, but if you dumped two inches of snow on Puerto Vallarta, they'd freak out too. Because they're not used to it. Cut us some slack.

I will also say that these storms were genuinely a big deal. People were without power for days on end, ending up with 40-something degree houses. Plows were recalled because it was too dangerous for them to be out. Even once the snow stopped, sidewalks are completely impassable and lanes in the roads suddenly peter out due to snowbanks that just can't be contained to the shoulder. Even Mr. Chicagoans-Go-to-School-When-It-Snows-Obama referred to the storm as Snowmageddon.

Oh, there's something else too: people in this area are kind of wusses when it comes to snow. And you know what? That's okay.

Original DC Metro Moms Blog post.

Jean's family did a lot of whining and had a lot of fun throughout Snowmageddon 2010. Check it out at Stimeyland.

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