Firewood, Music, Mead: Essential Survival Supplies for Ye Olde Blizzard of ’11

You know you’re in for a colossal let-down when a local radio station pre-empts a major syndicated talk show to share an hour-long “storm crisis center” with interviews of second-tier meteorologists, suburban mayors and mid-level functionaries in the county bureaucracy. All that build up inevitably leads to underwhelming results. I did, however, realize that almost all of my food at home requires a microwave, so I stopped by the Meijer store in Standale and acquired a .75-cubic-foot bundle of wood, some soup and a bottle of mead, on the theory that having non-microwaveable food will thereby protect me from a power failure. The lines were worse than Christmas — the self-checkout lanes by the produce section were snaked back down the grocery center aisle as far as the frozen foods. Because all the lemmings went into the long line, however, I was able to get in the No. 3 slot on the queue for the express lanes near the jewelry counter. Hooray for scouting ahead.

So apparently I’m writing this from the center of a blizzard. The weather so far has been depressingly sedate; we have perhaps 8 in. of accumulation as of this morning, and some occasionally nasty winds, but nothing that screams “OMG I’m going to die.” I told my department yesterday that I expected that everyone would work from home, and apparently they needed no further inducement to avoid getting out of bed.

Last night, I built a roaring fire and stretched out upon the couch, sipping some mead and enjoying the complex harmony of crackling logs and howling winds. Quite peaceful. I suspect that I will survive Mother Nature’s latest attempt to squelch my Constitutional right to travel freely.


In other news …

  • Life at the new place continues to be pleasant. I acquired a major bargain last week — a solid wood dinette set for six, including a sturdy captain’s chair, for the low, low price of $35. It’s in gorgeous condition: Old, with some of the wood stain rubbing off high-traffic areas, but sturdy, and at a 4×6 oval, I have ample space to entertain. It perfectly matches my dining room. I would have paid 10x the cost for this set. And all of this is in addition the sofa, love seat and large end table that Alaric and Sondra donated because they needed the space in their storage unit.
  • I have convened the first of hopefully many cigar and cocktail evenings, planned for mid-February.
  • Hospital life continues to be interesting. Lots of changes. Pays to think strategically.
  • I was recently accepted by Demand Media to edit copy for a specialty publication: DMS calls it the “Tech Beta” but it’s basically a content-sharing arrangement for technology-related articles with So far, the writing in the Tech Beta has been very, very good. And at $4.50 per edited article, I can breeze through them like butter.
  • I finally bought a scale last week. The results of my first weigh-in were far more horrifying than any “blizzard of the century.” So, its back to eating like a rabbit and pedaling like a stationary cyclist on amphetamines until the BMI falls into saner territory.
  • I did enjoy a few social activities of note in January, including dinner with Ken at Bistro Bella Vita and coffee with Charlie a few times downtown. Other than that, though, the last month has been quiet.

All for now.

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