Cajun Tomato’s NYC 100 is a periodic series chronicling my experiences and observations as a New Yorker. Post No. 48 chronicles the start of the Blizzard of 2015.
QUEENS – Outside my second-story window, pellets of snow, aided by a brisk north-south wind, are hurtling toward the concrete like a legion of kamikazes intent on arriving in hell at the exact same time. The sidewalks are turning to chalk with each passing minute. The N/Q trains are playing their standard, deafening soundtrack this morning as they rush past my apartment window. How long until their hum goes silent remains unknown.
The blizzard of 2015 is in its infancy. New York City could be inundated with up to three feet of snow the next two days, according to Mayor Bill de Blasio. Such a scenario would rank as one of the worst blizzards in the city’s history. As someone raised on the humid, mosquito-infested bayous of south Louisiana any amount of snow that sticks is notable. Three feet of snow? Sounds like the winter equivalent of a hurricane minus the hours of gridlock on the highways. (Two weeks ago I wrote about not enjoying snow. That sentiment remains true but this is more exciting because it involves watching history, not just dealing with shitty weather.)
“I walk light so I don’t piss the ground off” ~ Lil Wayne, noted “504” philosopher
I’ve encountered one snowstorm in NYC that resulted in work being cancelled. The job involved me passing food and drinks to cast and crew on a TV set (which thankfully was indoors). The problem? I had to walk in and out of the building to transport the food and drinks. As I learned that day, a ginger can only walk so gingerly in a foot of snow. If you’re going to bust your ass you’re going to bust your ass. It’s advisable to wear a puffy coat to soften the fall. The show’s producers cancelled the day’s filming midstream because of reported train shutdowns that would have made it impossible for the crew to journey home after a 12-hour day of filming.
The next morning I walked along Central Park North. There I witnessed a man doing his best Norwegian cross-country skiier in the Olympics imitation and kids pelting each other with snow. The snow’s depth made the park’s surface resemble fluffy clouds viewed from a 747. Truth is, the terrain was as unforgiving as the day before. I busted my ass and then tiptoed the remaining quarter-mile to my apartment. Lesson learned.
(Sidenote: Yeah, that Lil Wayne line had zero to do with blizzards. It popped into my head and then didn’t leave. A Weezy blizzard is a-comin’.)
Blizzards, like hurricanes, are an excuse to buy shit at the grocery store you otherwise wouldn’t. Yesterday, I had a pregnant craving for taquitos, those little roll-up taco thingies with mystery meat inside. So I purchased both beef and chicken taquitos under the guise that doing so would keep me from going Full Donner Party on my roommate and/or landlord’s family in the event the blizzard caused me to run out of food. Laying aside healthy food choices to save the lives of others is the most selfless thing a ginger can do in times like these.
Imagine Patriots coach Bill Belichick in his trademark hoodie and scowl and you have blizzard chic attire. I, for one, am going to stack on as many clothing items as possible to stay warm. I might even throw on a football jersey. Should a grown man wear a football jersey in public? Probably not but BLIZZARD!!!