Disclaimer: If you've recently been in a snow-related accident, don't read this. You're probably pretty pissed at Mother Nature's white hate right now, and for that, I do not blame you. However, when you're over it, come back and give it a read. It might do you some good. Anyway...
As I drove home from work last night, my 15-minute commute quickly turned into 45 with the fury of a lake effect snow storm that hit much of Western New York. Just after cursing out another driver for nearly side-swiping my car, I was caught in a long line of traffic. Blood boiling and vehicle puttering, I felt myself losing it. Then, I looked to my right and saw a snow-filled street with the blurred lights of other halted vehicles, all accompanied by a heavy falling snow. It was beautiful.
My bad mood disappeared, and I thought about this phenomenon. Snow. In Buffalo. It's one of those things. Other people talk about it a lot, but I'd bet we talk about it even more, and mostly, we're complaining. But, honestly, is it really that bad? I don't think so. Hear me out before you agree or disagree.
Here are 7 reasons, in my humble opinion, why Buffalonians should not hate snow...
1. It's Beautiful
I mean, it's just pretty. Look, we don't really have a say in much regarding the ways of the natural world. Be it God, Mother Nature, or some other higher being, someone (or something) decided that snow would be white (of course, it has something to do with water, but we didn't decide the color of that either). It could be black or brown, or worse, puke-colored. How terrible would that be?
You know when there's a fresh snow, and there's a couple of inches piled on every tree branch, the streets are white, and you can feel the ground crunching as you walk? That is beautiful. Of course, the plows do come, cars do drive, and eventually some of it turns a bit brownish with dirt, but we still have those few hours of absolute beauty.
No, I'm not talking about breakfast cakes with frosting. I'm talking about the kind you do in your car. When I was in high school, my girlfriend at the time had some pretty cool parents. Any time we had a good snow storm, her step dad would take us out to do donuts in all of the empty parking lots around town. It was a total blast. Much to my mother's dismay, this tradition has continued past the tearful breakup with my high school girlfriend. In fact, I did it last night. As I pulled the emergency break in the empty Auto Zone parking lot, I felt alive. I forgot about the $500 I just put into my vehicle, and for the first time since Winter's commencement, I was happy about my bald tires. So, yeah, donuts. They're a shit ton of fun.
3. Increased Likelihood of a White Christmas
I don't care who you are, or what kind of winter-hater you claim to be, there's nothing quite like a white Christmas. I mean, someone wrote a song about it. No matter how old you are, or where you're at in life, there's something magical about a white Christmas, and in Buffalo, the chances of that happening, are fairly fucking high. Boom. White Christmas.
4. Most of Us Have Heat
If you're reading this right now, chances are, you have a computer and/or a smartphone, which makes me believe you also have a house (or apartment), and thus, working heat. Imagine what it's like for someone without a home. Their concern during winter is not about making it home from work to catch their favorite show, or get to a happy hour with friends. They're concerned about finding a place to sleep where they won't freeze to death. That sucks. I'm not preaching or being self-righteous, but seriously, just think about that next time you're bitching about snow.
5. Skiing, Snowboarding, and Snowmobiling
I used to snowboard a ton, back when my parents were paying for it. Now, since I'm on my own, and my parents aren't footing the bill, I can't go as frequently as I'd like, but a couple times each year, I'll rent a board and treat myself to a day full of riding. And if you own a snowmobile, I don't need to convince you of how awesome that is. If, like me, you can't afford these hobbies, then go buy yourself a pair of snow shoes and go hiking in the middle of a snow storm -- you'll be amazed at how much fun you have. I know, I've done it.
6. It Can Give the Buffalo Bills a Serious Advantage
Notice I used the word "can," in italics. But, really. Have you ever been to a snowy Bills game? It's amazing. It's usually in December, so typically, the playoffs are nothing but a distant dream, but if we're playing a team from a warmer state, you know we're probably crushing them. I remember a game in the early 2000s; we were playing Miami, and in the second half, the snow started falling hard. We ended up winning, and throughout parts of both the third and fourth quarters, the ENTIRE crowd was singing, "Let it Snow." It was glorious. We'd all come prepared with the proper gear, so to be taking in this moment, witnessing a win, singing in solidarity, all while watching the entire Dolphins team shiver on the bench, was just spectacular. I'll never forget it.
7. It's Not as Bad as...
Hurricanes, volcanoes, earthquakes, take your pick. Seriously. I know you didn't choose your birthplace as Buffalo (damn your parents for that), but it could be much, much worse. I'm reminded of this every time I hear about a devastating natural disaster. Sure, snow may make us late for work, it can leave us with wet socks for the day, ruin a few pairs of shoes, and/or cause a little fender bender, but we're not losing our homes along with all of our worldly possessions. So, buck up, grab a decent snow brush, make sure you have good tires (or don't for improved donut performance), and learn to love the snow. At the very least, learn not to hate it. If you can't do that, move.
Caleb Houseknecht is a social media manager at KegWorks.com. This piece first appear on his Tumblr: calebphouse.tumblr.com.