Monday, December 30, 2019

Ice storm of the apocalypse

It rained in the wee hours of the morning. But it was still very cold. So before I went to work and looked out our window the world was shiny and black. And my wife and I had to ask ourselves "Is it wet or is it all perfectly frozen?"

Because it was the holidays, and a Saturday, there were almost no cars on the road. But it turned out there was one other reason there were so very few cars. One vehicle approached the big intersection we can look out on. It turned left. It was going two miles per hour. And still it slid.

"Is it wet or is it all perfectly frozen?"

The latter.

Uh oh. I had to drive in this. 

I went to the car and drove carefully out of the garage. I slid. I drove along at a crawl. I slid. Fortunately I had the roads pretty much to myself. I looked for spots with traction and slid between them. I inched my way to the highway. Horrifically smashed cars were eerily abandoned along the way, their interiors filled with expanded airbags. No emergency vehicles were on the way to help.

I turned on the radio. All the stations said "There are crashes everywhere. We advise not driving under any circumstances."


But I am driving.

What now?

My route has a lot of those electronic traffic message signs. Often they say something cute, but safety oriented. This time they all said the same thing:



I whizzed past the cars going ten miles per hour. The cars going 30 miles per hour whizzed past me. I was in the sweet spot, theoretically. Safe driving is when you think some cars are driving dangerously slow and some cars are driving dangerously fast. Maybe. Hopefully.

I made it to the skating rink parking lot of the library I work at. I managed to ease my car to a stop, got out, and slid my way relievedly indoors.

All my co-workers were there. One could argue that was not wise, but they all made it.

And they all had many, many, long, long stories.

I heard them all orally, as they don't have blogs.


  1. I'm glad you made it safely. That sounds absolutely harrowing. Especially that giant boulder in the middle of the road!

    1. Thank you. Giant boulder? Is that a California euphemism for smashed cars?


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