Oh lord, it's snowing
"Holy sh*t, it's snowing."
I imagine that statement was uttered up and down the country this morning. Possibly slightly more in the South, where we are rather more shocked by the appearance of the trappings of winter. You see it is one of the great British traditions: we are always surprised by the snow.
The fact we live in a fairly cold, damp country in the northern hemisphere does not seem to dampen our shock. Nor does the fact that snow has become annually commonplace stop the fact that a dusting of the white stuff is normally enough to bring the whole place grinding to a halt. Now, if you are reading this "up north" (read north of the Watford Gap) then all of this might seem faintly laughable to you. Having lived some of my early years and all of my university years in Leeds, I am well versed in the fact that
northerners in the UK are better equipped to deal with plummeting temperatures and snowfall than us southerners. But that does not stop the fact that a bit of snow does still elicit a strange excitement and then total nationwide chaos.
I do understand the excitement; but it makes more sense if it is excitement in the form of a puppy or child who is thrilled by the appearance of something fun. If you can keep that enthusiasm going into your adulthood then more power to you. But the shock and awe really should stop. It is weather, not the second coming.
And while we are on the subject, here's a few more things to stop (or start) doing when the snow hits.
Don't: State the obvious
"ZOMG it's snowing" "#WhiteFebruary" "Just looked outside, oh my god"
Thanks, we get it, it's snowed. I guarantee that everyone who is seeing your status update will respond in one of three ways: "I know", "it's not here" or run and check.
Do: Spread useful news
"It's snowing in my garden" - not useful
"Snow and ice have blocked Main St" - useful
By all means, if you have specific information which people will need, then do get it out there.
Don't: Dress like a tool
It is cold, but it is not the Arctic out there. Put on a coat, put on a hat, wrap up warm, but don't break out three duvet coats and a bearskin hat. It's not that cold.
On the flip side, don't try and walk to work in your patent office shoes. Ice skating in late with a twisted ankle is a bad look.
Don't: Immediately cancel all your plans
The trains will be a bit dodgy but the world does not need to stop. Don't throw out all your to-do list for the next three days and descend into hibernation. Show a bit of chutzpa and try to keep going.
Don't: Make new plans
Ok, don't take the mickey here. It is snowing, don't make a spontaneous plan to meet up town this evening. There's going to be enough people worrying about moving around, don't add to the throng. Also, don't arrange a snowball fight, chances are there isn't that much snow.
Do: Have half a brain
Don't drive like you're in a Bond film, do put the heating on, do help old people in the street, don't eat yellow snow. You've, presumably, survived this far by being a semi-reasonable human being, why not just keep doing normal things. It's a bit of snow, there's no need to over-react.