Wednesday, January 24, 2007

More whining excuses.

Apparently the railways consider half an inch of snow 'extreme weather'. Points have frozen and devices intended to clear ice from the lines have been disabled by, of all things, ice. You'd think the designers of such a system would have checked that. Trains are delayed, flights are delayed or cancelled, icy roads present a danger to drivers.

Now, if this was Jamaica, I could understand it. Half an inch of snow would come as something of a shock there. In the UK, however, snow in winter is no surprise at all. It happens every year, and this year has been unusual only in that there's been so little of it so far. There is no excuse for being taken by surprise by snow in the UK in January.

So why are our transport systems shrieking about extreme weather? Even compared to last year, which was mild, this is nothing. I recall opening my door to three feet of snow a few years ago, and having to decide whether to dig it all away so I could go to work, or saying 'sod it' and going back to bed. It was a quick decision. When faced with a few inches of snow, there's no decision to make. I can drive through that as long as I'm careful. Besides, once I've brushed snow off my car, it's cleaner than it's been all year.

Well, the forecast for some parts of the country tomorrow is four to six inches. It remains to be seen whether that actually happens (as of now, 9 pm, there's no sign of it). That should totally paralyse every moving vehicle in the UK. Seems they don't make them like they used to.

Lucky for me I still drive an old one.


Southern Writer said...

You and Toad No More have a thing about weather, don't you? That's okay, I get riled about it sometimes, too. It ticks me right the hell off when our weathermen disrupt something on TV to tell us it's going to rain. Oh, yeah. No exageration. Rain. And if one does it, they all do it. I've noticed they do it more often during sweeps weeks, and I suspect it ties in with the timing of the Emmy nominations they're always bragging about. "News Channel 3 is the winner of eight Emmy awards for weather forcasting!" Those guys seriously need to get a clue. Rain!

Tom, I had to walk those ten miles barefoot.

Romulus Crowe said...

There are awards for weathermen? if there are awards, then there shoud also be punishments. A spell in the stocks for getting it badly wrong, perhaps.

Ten miles, barefoot, with someone ahead smashing bottles on the road. ;)

Southern Writer said...

There are awards for weathermen?

I'm afraid so. And let me tell you, I resent that they're wrong in their predictions a lot more often than I'm wrong in mine, and yet, what they do is "science," and what I do is "superstition."

Ten miles, barefoot, with someone ahead smashing bottles on the road, mixed with salt!

tom sheepandgoats said...

Sorry, SW, I misspoke. The ten miles were to the mailbox! School was 50 miles. Oh, and we didn't have roads when i was a kid.

Anonymous said...

Fifty miles, uphill both ways barefoot, with someone ahead smashing bottles on the road, mixed with salt! And sprinkled with vinegar - on an empty stomach.

Romulus Crowe said...


I had to go to school in a different country where nobody spoke English and only communicated by hitting.

Every day I walked barefoot, a hundred miles to the coast, uphill all the way, on a dirt track covered in broken bottles, salt, vinegar and suplhuric acid. Then I swam fifty miles to the island where my school was, through sharks, Portuguese man-o-wars, and burning petrol.

At school, lessons were literally beaten into me. I had ten seconds lunch break, which was plenty as I had no lunch, then it was back for more beatings.

On the way back the teachers would fire torpedos at me until I reached shore, then I had to walk the hundred miles home, uphill again, over broken glass, salt, vinegar, sulphuric acid and a carpet of stinging nettles, until I reached home where my mother would lock me in a cabinet and run it through with swords.

I think I turned out pretty well-adjusted, considering.

tom sheepandgoats said...

Um....I can't really beat that, Rom.

So....another confession. I quit school at 10. Getting there and back was too tough.

I learned to read and write by blogging.

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