I know I'm a little prone to hyperbole, but the blizzard that struck yesterday and continues to strike today could have a devastating effect.
February 6, 2010
This was eight hours and 6-8" ago.
As I write this, there is approximately 30" of snow on the ground in Columbia, Maryland, and it is still falling HARD. When I opened the front door this morning and a pile of snow came into the house, I just stared at it for a few minutes. It did not compute, especially since I had shoveled consistently last night until midnight.
My landlord has DirecTV. My dish is already inoperable. There is zero chance of me getting onto the roof to clear it off. That means there is no chance that I'll be able to watch the Super Bowl in my house on Sunday. Obviously, all Super Bowl parties outside of a dormitory or large apartment building are cancelled.
Luckily, this community has entirely underground power lines. I am not seriously concerned about losing power unless the entire region suffers a blackout. People with cable should not have a problem.
I haven't lived here long though, and I haven't met any neighbors aside from "shovel chat" last week, last night and today. I believe I have 32 hours, an hour for each inch of snow we'll have, to befriend a neighbor AND get invited into their living room.
I really should be panicking more than I am. Right now, I'm short-sighted enough to only be able to think about the game. I have enough food to last a week, and I might actually need it. There is no chance I'll be able to go anywhere before Monday, and probably not until Tuesday. They are calling for another significant storm on Tuesday. In an already hurting economy, am I wrong to think this might be the straw that breaks the camel's back? How many employees who are paid hourly can survive losing an entire paycheck? How many businesses can survive not having a single customer? It's really just astounding.
As for the game itself, I will be interested to see how people handle the situation. Will Super Bowl party invites be extended to neighbors since friends can't come? Will the ratings actually be higher because much of the mid-Atlantic has to watch at home (meaning more individual televisions tuned in)? On the other hand, will we find out how much people ACTUALLY care about the game when they have to go to extremes just to watch it? I will be interested to see what happens.