We had a really mild November, to the point that I was easily biking up till the week of Thanksgiving. Then came Thanksgiving. Snow, ice, wind, cold. Suddenly, Chicago remembered ‘Oh man! It’s almost December! I gotta turn it down!’ So we’ve had snow, ice, wind, rain, sleet and traffic all week. Sunday, Tom Skilling, our famous weather dude, said we’d get a white-out on Tuesday…
We got rain.
What is it about Weather Men that they’re allowed to be so blatantly wrong and we accept it without much complaint? I understand that meteorology is a difficult science. You’re basically trying to predict the unpredictable, explain chaos, and apply trends and patterns to something that, by it’s very nature, is so large we can’t wrap our heads around it! The weather is just too big for us to map out reliably.
We did not get the 4-5 inches of promised snow on Tuesday. We got freezing rain all morning, cooling off into sleet (which was like being shot at by an ice-pellet gun) and then wind gusts with more icey snow. Wednesday we were promised -15 with the wind, and tomorrow a high of 12, with more wind.
Since they’ve been predicting Thursday would be between 12 and 6 all week, and they’ve been wrong about everything else, I was less worried than I was before. I knew Wednesday will be warm wool socks, my thinsulite hat, a wool sweater under my coat, and my normal pea coat. I don’t break out my down until about 0 Fahrenheit without the wind.
And I woke up to 4 degrees (-15 with the wind)… Whoops. They were right! I went for the extra ‘layer’ of wool mittens over my wool-lined leather gloves.
Still, the hardest part of the day was easy. I got a ride to the train station, spent a total of 15 minutes outside, got the train to work, the bus to the office, and pretty much kept myself as much out of the wind as I could. I mean, I’m brave and I’m hardy, but I’m not a freakin’ idiot.
Chicago is, however, pretty stupid. We have these parking meters that have been a downright problem. I referred to them as ‘wallet sodomites’ once in polite company, and got gales of laughter.Well these overpriced, privatized prices of utter crap FROZE last night. These are the same meters that make papers with sticky backing, so you can stick your receipt to your motorcycle and scooter, but the sticky bits melted off in our summer heat. The damn things are so frozen, you can’t even press the buttons!
The parking meter thing in Chicago is a drama. You can read about it at The Expired Meter on the Parking Deal. Basically, Chicago got screwed.
It’s nice, however, to see the winter brutality being even all around.
And no, I didn’t bike to work today.