A Threat Is All It Takes (ms)

The weather forecaster speaks in matter-of-fact tones: “We’re beginning to watch a storm just now forming off the coast of the San Peligros islands. Right now we’re thinking it could turn this way in a few days. If that happens there is the possibility of it combining with an Arctic Clipper heading slowly down from the Maritimes even as I speak. Should that occur we see the potential for, perhaps, six inches of snow or maybe a little more around about six days from now. We’ll keep an eye on that and let you know what’s happening as things develop.” And that, friends, is like waving the proverbial red flag to the bull which happens to be us.

Given that smattering of information, a dab of what may happen blended with the flavorful sauce of possibility, we begin to prepare for what may, might, perhaps, could happen. None among us wants to be caught unprepared for the onslaught of snow.

Warily we cast an eye toward the forecasts as the days wear on some of us secretly wishing we might have it injected into our very bloodstream so that we might not miss even a single word. This is serious stuff. Our lives and those of our families are on the line. We dare not be caught napping when the storm comes a tap-tap-tapping.

Zero hour approaches. The forecast grows more pointed, more resolute in describing what we may be facing: six inches according the latest interpretation, confirmed by at least three sources, with most of it coming overnight. Yes, as expected, slipping in to do it’s dirty work as we sleep our quiet slumber. Well, we will not be caught napping. To the market we go.

A theory has been advanced, one totally unsubstantiated mind you, that the digestive system of humans take an unusual turn when snow is in the forecast. According to one belief (and one only I might add) our systems are only able to digest and therefore obtain nourishment from bread and milk. Without it, in the face of a withering snowstorm threatening a full six inches of fine powder, we shall surely perish from this earth. It is our solemn duty then to prevent such an unfortunate turn of events thereby saving the human race or at east the three point two members we are directly responsible for.

So it is we find ourselves along with hundreds of others bent on self-preservation racing through the supermarket snatching up bread and whatever milk we can grab. We must also see to it we have extra for what would happen if the snowfall came to seven or even, gasp, eight inches! Lives could surely hang in the balance.

We wait in lines so long one can hardly find an end to join, wait as every person ahead dutifully presents his or her collection of coupons to cover all purchases, as the clerk calls for someone in charge with a key to correct a mistake, as purses are emptied of nickels, dimes and pennies to be certain only the exact change is given, as yet another item is found by a watchful consumer to be incorrectly priced. Finally, the wait is over, we start for home. As we enter the car to begin our ride the first flakes of the storm begin to fall but it matters not. Bread and milk we have. Life is good. Let it snow.

–Mike Stevens


~ by admin on January 13, 2011.

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