Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Snow Day!

For the first time in at least 15 years, the school district my boys attend is closing schools because of weather -- the problem today isn't necessarily snow, but really slick roads. The boys were very excited when woken up to be told at 5 a.m. (yes, I recognize I'm a jerk -- that's one of the benefits of being a Dad), because it's their first snow day in a while, since we lived back in Connecticut in 2003.

For me, growing up in semi-rural Nebraska, it seems we had two or more snow days almost every year. Does it seem to you like the number of days schools are closed has gone down over the last 30 years or so?


Anonymous Astro_Nuke said...

I think its because snow days are expensive to the school. You need to keep the bus drivers, lunch ladies, jainitors and now-a-days security around for the make-up days.

1/30/2008 8:28 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I grew up in Northern Iowa, on an acreage, five miles from the nearest town. We would get snowed in for up to 14 days before the snow plows would come through. Snow storms happen quickly on the plains and there were two times we got stuck in Eagle Grove, where our school was located and that was 11 miles from home. With no way to get the kids home, the school had to ask the community to open their homes to students and teachers who could not make it home. We had four of us students camped in our math teachers living room for two days.
We were in Fort Dodge once when a snow storm hit. When we got home three days later, we found three pheasant hunters living in our house. They had gotten caught in the storm and stopped at the first house they found.
In January of 1974, we had the worst I had ever seen. It lasted a week and tempretures hit 74 bellow with wind chill. We had a rope strung from the house to the garage and then to the chicken house and barn. Dad slept in the barn and I slept in the chicken house keeping fires going for the animals. We still lost quite a few but would have lost them all if we had not been there.
For those of you who have never had the joy of being snowed in, but being so usually includes a loss of electricity and phone service. We had wood heat so that was never a problem but we played marathon Monopoly, Crazy 8’s with three decks and read a lot of books under oil lamps and Dad always had his little brown transistor radio that ran on batteries.
I can still see Dad warming up frozen water pipes with hot water and rags. Our house was built in 1901. There was ice on the bedroom walls and during the coldest times we closed off the upstairs and slept in the living room. I don’t miss those days.

That Damn Good Looking Aganger From Iowa

1/30/2008 9:03 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow - That Damn Good Looking Aganger From Iowa.
That beats any "When I was a kid..." story I have ever heard.

1/30/2008 9:58 AM

Blogger reddog said...

My wife grew up in Devils Lake, North Dakota, Right in the path of the Arctic Express. It snowed there and the wind blew it up against things in big drifts. In the 50s and early 60s it got cold, she claims it wasn't unusual for the real temperature to get down between 50 and 60 below zero. She said sometimes the farm kids didn't make it in for school but the town kids were always expected to come and the teachers all lived in town as well.

Devils Lake never gets down past 10 or 20 below any more, hasn't for 10 or 20 years. We're thinking of moving there. It's a beautiful town, Hasn't changed a bit since the 50s. You can buy a mansion for $150,000, probably a lot less pretty soon.

1/30/2008 10:45 AM

Blogger sonarsup said...


I'm right up the road from Devils Lake in Grand Forks. It was 28 below this morning, but it was a whole lot worse yesterday at 15 below with 40 mph winds :)

1/30/2008 12:09 PM

Anonymous Guinness said...

Living in Hawaii now. Can't remember ever having a snow day here...

Then again, when we lived in Northern Virginia, the schools were closed if there was snow in the forecast, regardless of whether any precipitation actually occurred (or not). My kids were almost lucky enough to get their school year extended into the summer.

1/30/2008 3:00 PM

Blogger loddfafnir said...

Snow days, hah!

My inlaws live in Spokane and are complaining about having moved to get away from that kind of thing.

1/30/2008 4:40 PM

Anonymous BeachBumBill said...

Growing up in Hermosa Beach, CA. I NEVER had a snow day or any other kind of weather day, as it is always 72 with night and early morning low overcast.

1/30/2008 4:48 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bubblehead, didn't you ever get posted to the Hampton Roads area? Schools around here will close down if enough people open their refridgerators at the same time. I remember several times this year when school districts around here had at least a two hour delay because of fog! Pathetic.

1/30/2008 7:59 PM

Blogger RM1(SS) (ret) said...

My wife and I both lived in Michigan when we were kids. We're both constantly amazed by how often Groton schools shut down, and for what feeble excuses. "Snow? You call that snow?"

1/30/2008 9:36 PM

Blogger Sagey said...

I group south of Boston and our Superintendent was a retired Marine. Every single town around us would have a snow day, but not us! Living in NoVa I was flabbergasted at how quickly they would close school and for days at a time. Apparently no one knows how to shovel/or plow around there, you have to wait for the sun to melt it. Now living in Hawaii my son has had one "rain day". The school was flooded and our housing area was without power for 6+ hours but at least it stopped raining so we could go outside to play.

So in summary, I think it just depends on how paranoid the superintendent it. :-)

1/31/2008 12:20 AM

Blogger Bubblehead said...

Anonymous -- Nope, I never was stationed in Virginia.

Aganger -- I remember well the winter of '73-'74. My sister was born at the end of '73, and I remember us literally ice skating on the gravel road that week, and it getting down to -33F that night. Only other time I've been in weather that cold was when I was at prototype in Idaho back in early '85.

1/31/2008 12:37 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I used to keep the plainsmen awake extolling the virtues of growing up in Iowa. One kid from North Plate Nebraska said “But Chief, you don’t remember the bad stuff.” Like what I asked:
Mosquitoes who don’t leave with less than a quart.
40 below and having to do chores.
Horse Fly’s and Sweat Bees that leave a hole the size of a dime when they bite.
Laying on the top of your covers at 0200, sweating like crazy because it’s 92 out and the humidity is 88.

That’s just to name a few. The bottom line is I will never have to do that again (unless I choose to)

That Damn Good Looking Aganger From Iowa

1/31/2008 7:43 AM

Blogger cheezstake said...

Since your departure from the Constitution State in 2003, snow days have increased almost exponentially! It seems that with the first sight of a snowflake or even the forecast of snow, however minimal, the entire state goes into lockdown. Needless to say, we have yet to see a significant snowfall in the eastern half of the state.

I just picture school district officials standing around a lone snowflake on the ground, all looking at each other asking, "What do we do?"

There's snow in New England!!

2/01/2008 5:08 AM

Blogger C said...

I remember stories about the year before I got to college... Apparently one day over spring break people were literally snowed into the dorms. (Whoops?)

I like snow, but hate six-month winters. (Goddamn Massachusetts.) However, I think I'd prefer snow days to the flooding and ice we've gotten out here this year.

When I was little, growing up in Tacoma, WA, we used to watch people try to drive up the hill in front of our house. That's how we judged whether or not we'd have to go to school. If the cars made it up, we had to go. If they slid back down two or three times, we got to stay in our pajamas and watch movies.

Somehow snow days were a lot more fun as a kid. Now they're just a pain in the rear.

2/01/2008 8:22 PM


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