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Friday, December 06, 2013

Oklahoma Forgot to Take Its Meds Again

I grew up in Denver, where summers were a gorgeous, comfortable 80-something degrees and winters looked like the North Pole snorted cocaine and exploded all over it.  It wasn't uncommon to have to tunnel your way from your front door to your car in order to get to work or school, because Colorado didn't shut down for snow, well, ever.  You submitted to the thought of becoming a human popsicle in the mornings, partially thawing throughout your day, and then re-freezing on your way home.

...then we moved to Oklahoma.  Anyone who lived here at the time told us that it hadn't snowed 'round these parts in a good 30 years.  Then it *cough* snowed the first winter we were here, and the whole damned state SHUT DOWN.  Kids were sent home from school, roads were closed, people hid in the homes huddled to their wood stoves and weeping because the Ice Age had descended on a little town in Southeastern Oklahoma.  Why is that funny?  Well, I'll tell you.  Here's snow in Colorado:
...and here's what the "snow" looked like in Oklahoma way back in 1997:

"But where's the snow?"  I can hear you asking.  Exactly!  It did technically snow, but it melted as soon as it hit the ground.  That cocky, little asshole 14 year old me thought this was the most hilarious thing I had ever seen - these silly country folk got so freaked out by this magical non-snow that they SHUT EVERYTHING DOWN.  Everything.  Like we were on the  brink of a blizzard apocalypse and our only line of defense was to cower in our little shacks and pray for forgiveness that the schools had let a negro enroll in the school.  (edit:  It was southern Oklahoma after all, don't shoot the messenger.  I'm sure half of the racist population didn't even know what a black person looked like at that point.)

Fast forward to yesterday, when I got a call from my girls' school telling me that they were being let out early.  Because it's cold.  And it might snow.  My 14-year old asshole self re-emerged, and I posted a snarky comment on Facebook about how Colorado is laughing at Oklahoma right now, while we all run for central-heated isolation safe in our homes.  While it's not funny at all that there are some people right now without electricity and the ice has destroyed a few trees that have lived longer than Methuselah, I still think it's funny that SE Oklahoma has a heart attack every time the temperature drops below 30.  In fairness, Oklahoma weather could best be described as bipolar, considering that 3 days ago it was a pleasant 70-something degrees and sunshiny, and today, this is the view from my front door:

That's not snow, by the way, that's solid ice. 

So while I'm praying for the safety of the road crews, police officers, and volunteers out there clearing the roads and making sure people stay warm, I still want to point out to dear bipolar Oklahoma that Colorado is, in fact, laughing at you.  And pointing.  And if it got close enough, it would probably wedgie you. 

But that's a totally different post.


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