Thursday, February 3, 2011

Blizzard of Stupidity 2011

My Facebook Status: “I just read a story about a woman who said she thought she was going to die when she got stranded on a bus on Lake Shore Drive yesterday. Ummm…wouldn’t you have just walked to one of the hotels or high-rises a couple of blocks away? Maybe I’m missing something.”



I live in the Chicago area. We were hit Tuesday afternoon with the third worst snow storm in Chicago history. I really don’t know how they qualify “worst” here. We only got 10-24 inches of snow in the area but the wind and the snow drifts were amazing.


There was an article from The Canadian press (http://ca.news.yahoo.com/drivers-spend-fearful-frigid-night-trapped-chicagos-lake-20110202-162118-326.html) about a bunch of people stuck out on Lake Shore Drive during the storm that I just could not believe. Apparently a bus or a couple of buses (according to the article) had jack-knifed and blocked off Lake Shore Drive. There are quite a few really amusing quotes in this article.


A woman is quoted as saying: “I got 100 feet, everything was an orange hue, there was snow in my face, I couldn't see anything, I turned around and couldn't see the bus and I thought I was going to die”. Apparently she turned around and went back to the bus after attempting to hoof it with a group of people. Alright listen, I know visibility was bad out there. I talked to someone who was out there and got off of Lake Shore Drive right before these accidents happened. But really, I am so seriously disappointed in the human race. There is a hotel like every half block off of Lake Shore Drive. By “off” of Lake Shore Drive, a mean the buildings are a half block to two blocks away depending on where you are. You don’t even need a compass in Chicago; you turn your butt to the lake and keep walking until you run face first into a building. If you are an able person who can walk, there is no need to die on Lake Shore Drive because of a snow storm. Now you may be thinking…well maybe it was un-walk-able…maybe these people could not physically walk to a building nearby. After all, there was 70 mile an hour winds out there. Well, here are a couple more quotes from the article that prove that it was walk-able: “Orozco said more than 130 firefighters, some on snowmobiles, and 100 police officers were sent to the road. As they sat and waited, the stranded motorists gratefully gobbled down granola bars and drank coffee and Gatorade, brought to them by Good Samaritans who climbed fences and railings to deliver them” and “a 28-year-old nurse, just waited in her car and talked to her husband on the cellphone. He caught a ride as far as he could get, then started walking. He peered into windows until he spotted her just before midnight, six hours after her ordeal began. He climbed in and waited with her for three hours until firefighters took them to a warming centre at a nearby hospital.” I think this was a case of people not wanting to abandon their cars. I do not know what the people on the buses were thinking. I have been on a few Chicago buses and I would not hesitate to abandon one immediately upon knowing it was not going to take me anywhere. I have abandoned a few because of weird people and/or smells even though they were still moving.


Another quote from the article: “Some motorists came away angry, frustrated and puzzled at why the city didn't close the crucial thoroughfare earlier, or why officials didn't anticipate that a bus accident could clog it up like a cork in a bottle”. Hmmmm…couldn’t this happen on any roadway? Screw you Chicago authorities for not being psychic and not telling people to stay home. Oh wait, you did tell people to stay home, the governor even issued a disaster declaration on Monday before the whole thing even started.


Here’s another goody: “’The bus driver kept yelling,” We are all gonna die,” said Ron Nelson, a 51-year-old salesman who was on a bus bound for a northern neighbourhood where he lives. It wasn't clear if the driver was joking and ‘nobody thought it was funny,’ Nelson said at a hospital, where he was taken.” Alright, Chicago, I think it is time to do more mental health testing on city workers.


Here is another article by the Naperville sun: http://napervillesun.suntimes.com/3615687-457/drive-lake-wednesday-police-shore.html. Classic quotes from this article include: “’The snow was coming down and blowing like crazy, and this one guy just had to go out and buy a case of pop,’ Albert said. ‘He goes out and he gets stuck’” and “One woman who was in a motorized scooter who went out for a loaf of bread to a convenience store several miles from her home became struck on the sidewalk and they had to call a tow truck to get her out of the snow”. I mean…plows were getting stuck. Scooter lady really thought she would make it? I bet she was trying to get to a Wal-Mart. If she had no other food in the house which is entirely unlikely she couldn’t possibly starve in ONE DAY!!! She probably just had a grilled cheese craving she couldn’t control. If I was a rescue worker, I would have been slapping people once I rescued them. To all the rescue workers who had to leave their homes to save these people, I emphatically apologize. We are all not like this. Well, a small percentage of us are not like this anyway. I work with a lot of people like this…but we are not all this stupid.


My friend told me she heard a story about a woman who said she was going to starve because her power went out and she could not cook anything on her stove. I couldn’t find the article so we could all read it and laugh at it. Do reporters go to a neighbourhood, IQ test everyone in the area, then pick the dumbest person out there to interview? Is that what “good news” is made of?


I do put some blame for all of the under prepared people on the weather men. This was completely like the boy who cried wolf story. Every time a snow storm comes the weather men play it up like it’s going to be the biggest storm in the history of the world and then we only get three inches of snow over twelve hours. I did not believe them that this was going to be a big deal at all. Although, other people seemed to believe the weather men, demonstrated by the mad rush of people in the grocery stores. How long did these people think we were going to be snowed in? They were clearing the shelves at the grocery stores. My friend took a picture of a completely meatless meat aisle on Tuesday. I went to the store Monday because I forgot I was snack mom for one of my kid’s clubs on Tuesday. I saw one of the other moms at the store; she said she was stocking up for the storm. She had a box of Cheez-its and some cupcakes in her hand. Nice job stocking up lady…your kid will live through the storm but die of heart disease at 50 years old. She asked if I was stocking up for the storm as well and I said “No, I stock up for Armageddon every Sunday just so I don’t have to go to the grocery store after work during the week. I could live off of the boxes of macaroni and cheese in my cupboard for three years if I had to.” This is exactly why none of the other moms talk to me; I have a smart ass answer for everything.


My kids and I had a perfectly lovely snow day. One of the neighbor kids came over and played until the wind died down. Then we went outside and unburied my car. Speaking of stupid…I did not buy a shovel before the storm. I rent and haven’t needed one in my entire rental history. Anyway, the kids dug my car out with their saucer sleds while I supervised. They had so much fun doing it; I didn’t have to lift a finger. We stayed home the whole day (as advised by authorities), played video games, watched movies and trekked around in the snow…for fun.


The only thing I can conclude from reading these news stories is that the human race has evolved into a bunch of useless morons…who are really good at video games.