2.7 Inches

Elaine Thompson/AP

2.7 Inches is the amount of snowfall it takes to shut Seattle down.

It was snowing in the morning when I got up yesterday.  School was on regular schedule, and it continued to snow all day.  It was 49 degrees in the first classroom; I took the students to the library conference room.  Maintenance later discovered that the heater’s connection wires had been severed.  My second class of the day was not as cold as the first, but it was cold nonetheless, and of course the students were underdressed.  The snowflakes in the window taunted my class, who groused bitterly for having to be there.  On the average, there was a complaint, I’d say, every ten seconds.  From he very beginning, they went after me personally for keeping them in the room.

Then the snow started falling harder, and our view of the lake became whited out.  I got an email on my laptop that the rest of the school day was cancelled.  I have been involved in state and national championships and I will tell you there is no victory that is celebrated more riotously and taken more personally than the declaration of an early dismissal due to snow.

The carpool home was uneventful, and my townhouse was toasty warm when I arrived.  The news coverage was already on overdrive, and it wasn’t long before they were reporting street, freeway, and bridge closures; abandoned vehicles, and power outages.  Folks who live on slippery hills took video of cars sliding around, which local news replayed over strains of the Blue Danube Waltz.  You know how it goes.

My FB friends reported three to six hour journeys home; many were able to FB status and tweet their entire saga.   Non-Seattlites, as always, complain about Seattle shutting down for such little snow; the rest of us are happy to take the day off and stay home.

This afternoon I noticed my heater has stopped working; the condensate line, which is nothing but a clear vinyl tube, gets plugged up with ice when the temperature drops below freezing.  I thought about blow drying it, snipping it and pouring hot water into it… I thought about braving the streets and crashing at somebody’s house… in the end I decided to stick it out.

So it’s cold in my townhouse.  It will be cold again tomorrow, as temps won’t rise above freezing until Thursday, which is Thanksgiving Day.  I’m a little stressed out that I haven’t gotten my paycheck.  We’re scheduled to get paid on the 26th of every month, but because Thanksgiving falls on the 26th this year, they announced they’d be paying us on the 23rd.  The trick is that today was a snowday for the business office as well, so I wouldn’t be surprised if we didn’t get our checks until Monday.

Guh, cold and broke.   Oh well, at least I can catch up with my grading…


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