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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on January 4, 2004 11:20 PM. The previous post in this blog was Back on the blog. The next post in this blog is Those lovable lawyers. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Sunday, January 4, 2004

Wimps

It's a little after 11 on a Sunday night, and already they're cancelling school for Monday in various school districts in the Portland area. This is ridiculous given the facts that the roads are all perfectly clear at the moment, and that the prediction is for snow to resume here sometime late tomorrow afternoon.

Pretty soon they'll be calling off school days based on the Farmer's Almanac. You wonder why kids don't respect school authorities? It's because the authorities often don't deserve it.

Comments (14)

We have black ice out here in the country. Rather be safe than sorry.

The ironic thing is, many of these kids will spend part of the day in the cars of their parents, who drive like they still live in L.A. They'd be much safer on a school bus.

This amount of snow, and its timing, would never result in school closures back in Albany, New York, where I grew up.

At the same, however, I appreciate living in a region that understands the value of taking a day off.

Here we close school because it's cold. Comical.

I'm with you, Jack: All of the Portland "hysteria" over snow is killing me. I spent four years in Montana for school and never got a snow day. Can't we just be a little more prepared here? Can't drivers adjust their driving for the weather? Can't we PLOW?

What hysteria? Portland schools aren't closed. Portland does plow--but we don't even get snow every year, so how many plows (and crews) do you want to pay taxes to have for those rare years when we get one or two snowfalls that require plowing?

Y'all are being more hysteric about your imagined Portlander reactions to the weather than the actual reactions are. I was born here and mostly grew up here; it snowed a lot more in the 70s than in any decade since, and I remember standing on snow-covered streetcorners waiting for the school bus plenty of times.

...it snowed a lot more in the 70s than in any decade since, and I remember standing on snow-covered streetcorners waiting for the school bus plenty of times.

That wouldn't happen today. Y'all.

I work a temp job at a local college and given the amount of calls I received last week whining "Why are you still open? THERE'S SNOW!" I think it's fair to say that Portlanders are wimps. Sorry, you can't convince me otherwise.

Which is worse, some snow cutting one day off the school year in the winter, or the legislature cutting 17 days off in the spring?

Yeah, and I remember the '57 storm that dumped many feet of snow on Portland. Of course, being just a kid then, it was great. We built igloos and tunnels under the large snow drifts.

Now, as a responsible adult (responsible for my family), the snow concerns me. Especially since I live on the side of a hill (about 650-foot elevation) with only steep hills in and out (roads that are closed as soon as snow or ice hit them). So, I left work early today to beat whatever was coming our way (to ensure that I wasn't trapped at the bottom of the hill and having to overnight in a motel).

Perhaps some of the school closures today were unnecessary; perhaps not. For our kids' sake, I prefer to err on the side of caution.

Can anyone enlighten me on the "leave the faucet on to avoid freezing" thing? I lived in Wisconsin from birth until 2000, where winters regularly get below zero for weeks at a time, and no one there ever told me my water would freeze unless I left the faucet running; nor did I ever encounter such a phenomenon. Are Oregon sewer pipes built differently? Has any Oregonian ever had their water freeze due to failure to leave a faucet running?

I'm feeling a little defensive here. Some of us have absolutely no experience driving in winter conditions because Oregon so rarely has any. Case in point: I've had my license for 6 years (I got it at 19, no reason before then) and prior to this year I think it has snowed ONCE in Corvallis, where I lived until six months ago. When exactly was I supposed to gain these amazing winter driving skills?

Calling off school when the roads are clear is somewhat silly--they can always send kids home early if it looks like it's going to get bad.

But can you blame people for getting alarmed when the National Weather Service prints stuff like this: "ANY TRAVEL IS STRONGLY DISCOURAGED. IF YOU LEAVE THE SAFETY OF BEING
INDOORS...YOU ARE PUTTING YOUR LIFE AT RISK." This is quoted directly from their storm warning page for today. I think they're going overboard, but you can bet I'm not going to try driving today... Thank goodness for TriMet.

Sam, this is the first I've heard about the faucet-drip advice, too.

Today (Tuesday), of course everything should be closed in Portland. Probably tomorrow too. Yesterday? No way.


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