DRAPER'S PAPER ROUTE
Do Do Do, Lookin' Out My Back Door
Is it really a secret that snow means it’s a holiday in the South? For those of you who feel it is your duty to scoff at our ritual grocery hording at the hint of snow, or who feel put out that traffic is backed up at the ABC store, can you give it a rest? We like doing doughnuts in the parking lot. You will live.
Seeing the roads covered in snow has always meant that the busy world is being forced to a stop. It does not snow enough here for us to invest in seven million snowplows. We are not all that great at driving in the snow anyway. Things like avoiding slamming on the brakes while driving down a steep, icy road are counter-intuitive. Our response to all this is to shut down the schools and most of the businesses, and then pile ten or twelve kids into a van and head for the nearest steep hill, so we can slide down it with stuff like cafeteria trays or trash can lids.
Snow is a party. A big snow, like the one we just had (big for us), is a big party! Anyone who tries to change that is… well, I’m sorry, but you’re just a yankee. That’s all they are to it. If you liked where you were so much, what brought you down here? On second thought, never mind. We don’t want to hear about that either.
Some years ago, I was in the lawyers’ lounge in the courthouse (which is where a lot of nothing happens while lawyers are waiting for cases to get called), and there was a particular snit going on about how the District Attorney at the time, Tom Keith, had been quoted in the paper as saying something disparaging about yankees. Fred Hutchens, who has since gone home to be with the Lord, walked in on this sniping and said, “You know what yankees and hemorrhoids have in common? The good ones go back up!”
I am just being funny. I have friends who are yankees. Really. Not only that, my family moved here from New Jersey (when I was eight). O my God! What does that make me? Well, since my parents are from Oklahoma, I can claim I am from the South by jus sanguinis (citizenship by blood).
I like living in North Carolina. I like the people. It was a fun place to grow up (assuming that I did… grow up). One of my fondest memories is of waking up to a snow like this one when I was in the fourth grade. It was on a Monday, and I had no idea it was coming. All of a sudden, I didn’t have school. I got to chase all over with my dogs and go sledding with my friends. When my fingers froze together, my mom gave me hot chocolate. We were out of school for a whole week. That stuck with me. Now, all big snows are like that one, or I feel like I missed out on something - like Christmas or my birthday.
So I realize that our snow holiday offends the finer sensibilities of those more accustomed to inclement winter weather, but can you please get over it? I am not changing.