“Humor is just another defense against the universe.”
“A person without a sense of humor is like a wagon without springs. It's jolted by every pebble on the road.”
Henry Ward Beecher
“You can turn painful situations around through laughter. If you can find humor in anything, even poverty, you can survive it.”
I have always been of a belief that no matter how bad a situation is, a little humor can lighten the load and it lends strength that you never knew you had. Even though I tend to rant angrily at politics, or get serious about our prepping plans, there is always a sense of humor waiting in the wings eager to leap to the forefront. In that spirit, I give a small rant, and a slice of humor to lighten your load.
Well its almost 1 AM and I wasn’t ready for bed and after driving home tonight through the nasty-ass winter slush on the ground I wanted to lay down a lil rant about winter driving in Minnesota. What is it about winter driving that makes the average human think they are invincible? I watch people in their “invincible” SUVs panic if there is a bit of rain, because they might hydro-plane off the road. Yet let six inches of snow fall upon a good inch of ice, and those same people will drive like the highway is a NASCAR track and they are 2 pts away from taking the Nextel Cup. They tail-gate, cut you off, make their own driving lane, and fish-tail down the road like they are the only thing on the winter covered asphalt. Then, they have the nerve to be enraged when you reduce speed, increase the cushion between yourself and the car in front of you, and try to maintain control of your car in hazardous driving conditions. I'm beginning to think these are the same idiots who, at three A.M., make the donuts in the vacant parking lots. (Yes it’s true, it is a man and his car that make those mysterious circles, not an alien mother ship fresh from turning crop circles in the English countryside).
It gets worse as winter is dying down in March. At this time of the year our semi-fearless Dale Jrs are totally confused. We have days of 15 degrees and 3 inches of snow, followed by temps in the 40s and slushy streets, mottled with mini-reservoirs over still frozen manhole covers. OH NOOOOOOOOOO! "Do I drive like a blue-haired grandma with my nose an inch above the steering wheel, or try to break the land speed record in my family-friendly assault vehicle????" Poor souls just don’t know how to drive until they hear from the trusty weatherman and his technologically advanced Doppler radar.
Anyway, as I said, in March and like sporadic days in January & February (when the temperature rises above 25), the streets do get a tad damp from a slight thaw. For those of you who don’t live in the snow-belt, rock salt generally won’t melt ice and snow when the temperature is below 20 degrees, hence the use of sand and brine mixtures. Now with the thaw, comes a lovely incarnation of mid-winter driving, ROAD-PISS. That wonderful concoction of salt and dirt and sand and water and antifreeze and oil and grease, all loosened from the frigid pavement by running water and Michelin tires turning at 55 MPH. This divine winter shower turns black cars white, and windshields into wonderful sunscreens. What’s a driver to do? Why use windshield washer solvent of course!!! That lovely blue liquid that saves our vision and help us to see the car in front of us (or the occasional small child crossing the street) before we hit them. But the magical blue stuff does more than clean glass (and I don’t mean to drink, although some stupid people do need the warning label. More on the idiots of the world another time). It is yet another item in this world that is meant to drive us all insane.
This necessary solvent is part of a grand conspiracy. One, it cost twice as much as a gallon of gas during the winter. I know, supply and demand. Lord knows that during the rest of the year the window wash producers don’t want to deplete the natural solvent mines and refine the super juice year round. AND they like to pull out the SUPER-DUPER purple version that will clean your windshield in temperatures down to 40 below zero for the extra cold season (the cost of which is about 30% more than the blue).
Part two of the conspiracy involves the automotive industry. You see, the pretty blue stuff comes in gallons, windshield washer reservoirs will stop pumping the vision juice when there is room for 13 cups of liquid, leaving 3 cups in the jug (well not 3 because they made the hole small enough in the reservoir that you are sure to spill a cup on the pavement, more if it is windy). Now, if we paid $6 for this gallon of manna, we surely won’t toss the rest in the trash. So into the trunk it goes, only to roll around like a decapitated head, causing anxiety whenever it thumps the quarter-panel making us think we've been hit, or hit something. Just what one needs when dealing with the rest of the pathetic drivers on the road. Ahhhhh I can't wait for construction season, (the OTHER half of the year in Minnesota)
Well I do think I have gone on enough on this. It really is kind of a silly thing to rant on about, but I don’t care it’s my blog entry; I can type what I want. And for those of you who live where the snow never blows, you can get termites so I guess we're even.