The Great Uniter

Quote of the Day    

The way a crow 

Shook down on me
The dust of snow
From a hemlock tree

Has given my heart
A change of mood
And saved some part
Of a day I had rued.

–Robert Frost, Dust of Snow

Is there anything to unite people of the South, at least of Mississippi, more than the prospect of snow? Oh, sure, there are always naysayers. But I’d venture a guess that over 90% of Mississippians love snow. All it takes is one irresponsible weather man to say snow is “possible” or that we are on a “winter weather watch”, or that “conditions may exist” and the whole state goes into a waiting and watching mode, hoping against hope that this will be that rare year to see it fall and stick, yet knowing deep down that its highly unlikely.

This morning brought such a warning for those of us near Jackson. We’re on a “winter weather watch.” And everybody is watching. So far, its nothing but rain, and a steadily dropping mercury. But we watch. And wait. And hope.

If it snows–really snows–I’m taking the day off tomorrow. I might build a snowman, something I’ve yet to do in my 25 or so snow day career (only about 5 of which were in Mississippi). There’s no one to snowball fight with, though I’ll surely regale my family with tales of the epic snowball battle royale I had back in college with Greekson, Sweet, Smily, and others. Maybe I’ll even find a hill to slide down using a (patent pending) Mississippi sled. That’s if I can find some cardboard big enough. Around the state, the places that get snow will virtually shut down. The schools will close and businesses will freeze operations. People will jam the phone lines, especially from the colleges, calling home to say “It’s snowin!” and “Y’all gettin any?” Others will jump in their cars and skid into shallow ditches. Many photos will be taken. And yeah, a few will grouse.

But for now, we watch. And wait. And hope.

Bonus Quote of the Day

Whose woods these are I think I know,
His house is in the village though.
He will not see me stopping here,
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer,
To stop without a farmhouse near,
Between the woods and frozen lake,
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake,
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep,
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Robert Frost, Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening

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About travellinbaen

I'm a 40 year old lawyer living in Ridgeland, Mississippi. I'm several years and a couple hundred miles removed from most of my old running buddies so I started the blog to provide an outlet for many of the observations and ideas that used to be the subjects of our late night/happy hour/halftime conversations and arguments.
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17 Responses to The Great Uniter

  1. OB says:

    It’s snowing here in Houston, and I am seriously thinking about taking tomorrow off.

    A couple of years ago it snowed on my daughter’s first birthday, which just so happens to be Christmas Eve, and it was the best day ever. I think I still have a snowman in the freezer.

  2. JessieLou says:

    I had to memorize “Stopping By The Woods On A Snowy Evening” by Robert Frost in 4th grade – brings back lots of memories. I’ve got several good snow memories – some from Pascagoula, others from Lubbock, Texas which was more serious snow. I’ve built my share of snowmen and had one really good snowball fight that I recall in the last 10-15 years. It is here today and gone tomorrow – enjoy the moment while you can.

  3. Stone says:

    I will be happy to come to your house and pelt your butt with snowballs. You and your barely attached arm will only be able to say “back when I pitched for Goula I could throw a snowball over a mile”.

    I got a 1:30 meeting but, should it snow, my morning is free for snow combat.

    Your post is spot on. I told everyone at the office “if it snowed this place will shut down.”

  4. What I’d really like to do is ambush somebody like the bullies in A Christmas Story. Or, if I had an enemy like FDR in the Seinfeld episode that ends at the beginnin, a Kramer-style hard frozen snowball would be fun. Stone, you know where ex-elect Justice Smith lives? I wouldn’t mind taking him down.

    And it wasn’t just that I could throw it a mile, but that it would be on a line and with my off hand. Your present knowledge of my achilles shoulder makes the prospect of a fight with you unappealing.

  5. coachteajay says:

    Good one Baen, reminds of one day back in circa 95, Hattiesburg was under a major winter weather event watch, Greeg and I decided to skip class and to stock up on “supplies” we sat in our apartment and ignored the self imposed ration of supplies and watched as it did nothing but rain, hours later, my mother called from the coast to inform her by now incoherent only child that it had been snowing for hours and they had build a 2 ft snowman,,,needless to say Greeg and I were slightly pissed.

    Other “snow events” I recall
    1984–a few flurried fell outside my 4th grade class, Mrs. Moore would not let us leave class while our other classmates danced outstide like the Saints has just won the superbowl, while we entered the world of fractions…another slightly pissed moment in my life

    1994- went to Florida for springbreak to enjoy the sun, returned home sunburned to a major temperature drop and snow, while my friends were yuckin it up on Del Norte, while Mamu was out of town, my ass of a father refused to allow me to drive in such weather, so I missed out..once again slightly pissed!

    1996- Drove to Obnoxford in possibly the worst ice/snow storm in recent history, as Burks and Greeg downed Jack Daniels the whole way, I held onto the wheel completely sober going about 8 mph, we finally arrived around 12 that night, of course all the bars were closed, however, Feidt took us to some hill outside a girls dorm to slide down with cardboard, I have finally witnessed “real snow” I thought to myself, what a grand event, only to have campus police show up and run us off…once again slightly pissed.

  6. Good stories CTJ.

    I recall vividly in first grade (’76) we had a slight dusting in Pascagoula. Back then, you could ask to go call your Mom for a checkout at Eastlawn. One by one the kids went and called and got checked out. Some even got checked out before they could have their turn on the phone. When I finally called my Mom she asked “Are you sick?” I replied “hell no Mom its F’in snowin, get me out of this place like all the other kids!”, or something to that effect. She did not care what the other kids were doing. I sat in that room with about three other kids waiting for the bell to ring. By the time I got home the flurries were finished and only little off-white dirt clods remained.

    And I’m still “slightly pissed” about it.

  7. Stone says:

    Looks like the bulk of it will miss us to the south.

    Looks like a slightly pissed type of event.

  8. coachteajay says:

    Watched the radar in class with my students today, huge mass of snow was building to our west, we all hurried to the courtyard during lunch with anticipation of the white stuff…..It all dissipated over Hancock and West Harrison Counties, the only snowing it did in Biloxi was up someone’s nostrils…..NO SNOW…Yet another slightly pissed moment, so I’m going drinking and watching the Saints play at the Red Eye Grill. I’m sensing a movie day in Coach Johnsons class tomorrow.

  9. All we got in Ridgeland was slush. Just a few miles away it blanketed the ground. However, the whole southern 2/3 of the state did shut down. In fact, in Jackson, schools opened so people would have to drive early in the morning when there was ice, snow and sleet everywhere. The forecast was for it to stop after noon and warm up enough to melt everything. So, in true MS snow response fashion, all the schools closed at lunch forcing the closure of virtually every other business in the area.

    When it comes to winter, Mississippians are the biggest wimps around.

  10. smilyj17 says:

    I remember the big snow we had at State when I lived with TB, He ran off the road twice that day.

  11. I still can’t drive on ice or snow.

  12. Stone says:

    Snow causes us to Panic. The school almost lost my daughter today. In the panic shutdown (despite the fact the snow had stopped) they put her in the round bus line.

  13. Madd Dawg says:

    Coach,
    Those stories, and amny similar ones told by you in the past, give us all a glimpse into the events that shaped your psyche. scary stuff.

  14. coachteajay says:

    MD 20/20 orange jubilee….they are usually the result of over consumption, of an assortment of things. Some of which I would never admit to on a job ap….glad I work for the government, just keep paying taxes as the stock market plummets. Thanks

    BTW…I will be hosting the new years day party over here on “DA Point” walking distance to the Grand and Palace, so any of you interested in Wallaces stories and a gathering of debauchery, let me know

    • Klaudia says:

      Tenk at dere har snf8! Har familie pe5 nselveotdandrt og trf8ndelag som fortsatt er i lettere sjokk etter snf8fallet! 🙂 Ser ut til at vi slipper unna enne5 se5lenge…men det var under 6 kalde grader i morges her.Fine bilder – likte se6rlig godt utsikten pe5 siste bildet. Er jo flott med snf8 pe5 fjellene da!

  15. Madd Dawg says:

    Teaj,
    sounds good. maybe this year there will be more than three of us left at 5:00 PM like last year–that was just a pathetic showing.

    Reminder sweet, you owe the TOM Committee $100 for a TOM committed (and admitted) by you when Rosie was in town and she and Suzy and I went out and you allegedly “lost your phone” and forgot how to use a land line. You thought that I would forget didn’t you? New Year’s Day is the payment due date for all TOM commitee violations commited over the prior year, and the committee recognizes the following, and only the following, items as having value: boos and possibly good food (subject to the approval of committee members).

  16. Jessie Lou says:

    I’m cracking up……

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