RSS Feed

Tag Archives: weather

Advice from Alaska on how to deal with a Polar Vortex

 

It is generally colder here in Alaska than in your backyard so we would like to help you survive the next few days of POLAR VORTEX. We don’t have POLAR VORTEX here but we do have The Arctic Circle and the record for the coldest temperature in the United States, (-80 degrees F in the 1970’s.)

Chances are you SHOULD NOT GO SWIMMING TOMORROW, EVEN AT THE POOL.  Your hair, if not dried completely, will get all frozen when you walk out and you will look like Doc Brown. At some point, dry thirsty hair will bite back by shocking  you with static electricity which could kill you, when and if it is the form of lightening, so LOOK OUT!

Your lips will get incredibly chapped. DON’T LICK THEM! Your tongue may stick to them, no just kidding. Slather on the lip balm which your grocery and drug store will run out of in 35 minutes from this posting. Also your legs will itch uncontrollably and you WILL break out in a weird rash of red bumps on your torso. I would show you a picture of my cold weather rash but it is all gone because it is a balmy 32 degrees and snowing here in Anchorage. Slather on the moisturizer or shortening or lard if necessary.  Do not go to the emergency room. This is not Shingles.

The freezing point is  the weather we prefer here. It is perfect. You will soon agree.  Although 20 degrees is better for ice skating which is only done outdoors here. If you go ice skating in minus 20 degrees F, as I have done on occasion, you may find your nose is running and wipe it on your mitten. Only you will find blood all over you as your nasal membranes may burst. This is not a medical emergency, just poor judgement.

I saw this  headline posted online

Experts Are Warning People Not To Breathe Deeply Or Talk Outside Ahead Of The Polar Vortex

I traced it down to this website:

Experts Are Warning People Not To Breathe Deeply Or Talk Outside Ahead Of The Polar Vortex

Uproxx

who in term attributed it to The National Weather Service in Des Moines, Iowa.  I combed through the NWS Iowa site and saw no mention of silence or walking backwards while throwing salt over your shoulder in order that the POLAR VORTEX shall not strike you dead with its Mighty Ice Scythe.

Truth be that this map was also featured on the Uproxx site:

I’m not so sure I can take this site seriously as Alaska and Hawaii are not even accounted for. Hawaii and Alaska might just say, ” Yo! You want those Smallpox blankets back?”

As far as not breathing deeply outside, you can accomplish that easily by inducing a panic attack which involves shallow breathing.  Start thinking about Trump or your retirement account, what’s left of it, or your diet before going outside.  Panic is your friend. Remember if you turn blue, faint and break your head open it probably isn’t from the cold but from your lack of breathing. God forbid you wear a scarf or face mask. JUST DON’T TALK. THE POLAR VORTEX STALKS PEOPLE WHO TALK! JUST SHUT UP FOR GODSAKES AND LIVE TO TALK ABOUT IT!

Here’s some more unsolicited advice from Alaska. DO GO OUTSIDE! IF YOU DO NOT, EVERYONE FROM WORK WILL HAVE A STORY ABOUT HOW COLD IT WAS BUT YOU AND YOU WILL HAVE NOTHING TO TELL YOUR KIDS WHEN THEY COMPLAIN ABOUT HOW HOT IT IS THIS SUMMER.  Best to walk to the store and buy some ice cream. That is something to be able to write on your tombstone.

Also there will be things you want to purchase for this event such as Touchscreen gloves. Do not even think of it. These do not work in Alaska, maybe because we have sketchy internet service or maybe because IT’S TOO COLD!!  Your fingers will fall off in those wimpy gloves. Touch screen mittens would be a better idea but then you would need a phone like this:

phone 2

which is traditionally used indoors.

In Alaska we do tend to wave conversations inside when it gets too cold. We wear layers or if you are pretentious you buy high tech polar clothing even if you don’t work outside.  We plug in our cars and the people with the high tech polar clothing have remote car starters and seat warmers. Most adults go outside each day no matter how cold it is because we are insane but recess is cancelled because little children don’t know how to slow down in the cold. We don’t do marathon training in that kind of weather but we also don’t call in sick from work or people will laugh at us. People have been know to go camping in minus twenty and sleep in snow shelters for fun.

Enjoy your POLAR VORTEX. Don’t die. Don’t stop breathing and remember that silence won’t save you. THE POLAR VORTEX CAN READ YOUR MIND! Alsoif you do happen to get the day off, consider pairing with a co-worker and driving to the store or foodbank or just to a local bus stop and offering folks a ride home or wherever. It will warm your heart if nothing else.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

You don’t need a weatherman to tell which way the wind is blowin’

It recently snowed, lots, for three days straight. The news  projected “overcast skies” with zero percent chance of precipitation each day. This photo was shot at the half way point.

house.pngThis is how it can feel anticipating the next four years.

My guess is that the chief weatherperson is on vacation in Hawaii and there is no backup but someone akin to a vice president who looks things up on Wikipedia, Encylopedia Brittanica  or Lands and Peoples from their home in Seattle. Even to Alaskans, Seattle is not the center of the universe.

landslands2lands3

I give the vice president, or whomever, the benefit of the 1955 edition even though the 1932 edition is more colorful.

1932.jpgEverything looks more colorful in the past – the reign of Queen Victoria, the winters of my childhood, the loves and losses. I distrust predicting the future with polls or by use of the vast amount of information available to me. The present continues to surprise me even though I speak to live people. Perhaps that’s because I know myself so poorly.

Only on few occasions do I speak to people without my hidden agenda oozing over my attempts at connection. Why should I expect any different from others? You would think I would have learned this practicing as a therapist but I continue to assume that with enough information I will be able to predict the behavior of others and even improve upon it. This is called grandiosity. Welcome to The American ideal.

I suffer from nostalgia which throw me into fantastical worlds where I am both old and young, safe yet brave, gifted yet of the common man. There are elements of these in both President Trump and Bernie Sanders. It must be difficult in a land of superheroes to elect a practical commander in chief.  Perhaps, the Christian culture fosters the search for a savior instead of a professional paper pusher. I forget that there is no paper anymore, just email, video and tweets.

I delight in ferreting out the B.S on Facebook, in The Huffington Post and The Anchorage Dispatch News. Perhaps those who practice Biblical Exegesis do this habitually or is it just the curse of the depressive? Paid adverts are deleted immediately, any post with a small child or wounded animal pleading not for themselves or their personal freedom but for the plight of their peoples are suspect. Promises and cures are equally annoying. I would enjoy reading that someone lost weight using tricks that would only work for them personally and may not be permanent.  The message is Hope. The command is Faith.

Even when I see many women marching in cute hats I question what I am supposed to feel. If I am honest, I know women used their savings, employed babysitters, and gained a sense of power on Saturday. These are women who vote and yet their vote did not win the election. I am not that interested. It’s good practice for the minority voice to be heard but I care more about the snow. It has fallen in vast amounts. People are mourning. I get it, but what about the snow? It’s still falling. I can be nostalgic and think about the good times we had but my source  is both removed and outdated.

  I am more interested in those who did not attend. Those who disagree, those who don’t vote, those who have an alternative solution to the world’s ills. These are the people who won the last election.  This is the weather I could have foretold by looking out the window in Alaska instead of listening to a weatherperson in Seattle.  It may be too late to get them to listen to me. I approach them not with my political agenda but with my own person, in my own hat. A show of force can be effective in some cases but in others it takes a fool to survive the chaos of the world. Wish me luck.

5 degrees and holding w/ mint chocolate

Today there is a big old man in my bedroom blasting the Grateful Dead. One would hope that I got lucky last night but the mattress, box spring and I  are out in the kitchen. The bedroom carpets are being replaced and the walls painted. ‘Tis the season for home repair discounts. I have been in this apartment for over 12 years so I’m lucky we’re getting an upgrade before they have to carry me out in a box.  Speaking of boxes, I meant to mail out a present today but I can’t find it because all my stuff and my two roommate’s stuff is mingled in a Close Encounters mound centered in the common space.

 

pile.png

The belongings of three people who do not need anything for Christmas

 

I could spend the day outside but I did that yesterday and got a bit cranky. It’s about 5 degrees, I’m being generous here. When the trees are covered in Hoarfrost, you know it’s a little damp and a lot cold so I am prepared for my ice beard. I have hair all over face which gets wet then icy. Yesterday after skating I looked like Scrooge. My pale white hair frosted over and stuck straight out at the sides. I shouldn’t complain. It’s actually good weather for sleeping and taking a walk to see Christmas lights. I know I’m in trouble when I open the door and a cloud of mist appears when the warmish house air hits the super cold outdoors air.

T

frosty.png

The white stuff on my collar is my breath

 

Now my cranky housepainter is listening to The Rolling Stone’s Shattered. I wonder if he started painting at 20 and has been listening to the same station ever since then. I bought myself the cheapest peppermint patties I could find to cheer me up. They taste a little waxy but that way I don’t eat as many as I would the York ones.  I almost bought peppermint tea but I have 4 boxes of other teas I really should drink first. But peppermint is so delicious. It’s like winter in a cup but warmer.

Alaska Sausage and Seafood is like a winter wonderland of food. All the food is German, Swedish or Alaskan and wrapped in colorful foil, covered in powdered sugar, or filled with squishy marzipan. Of course there are also many sausages including a potato sausage  which I thought might be vegetarian but was mixed with pork squeezed into somebody’s intestine. I spent a good amount of money there because I am only doing edible gifts to most people this year. Having cleaned out my room, I was depressed with all the crap I have and how much time it takes to go through it. I have photocopies of things. No one keeps photocopies anymore. I have photos. I still have a few VHS tapes and way too many books. Salvation Army will save me if I can just get them into bags and out the door. But I must give because I love Christmas so here are some of the things I got. My roommates don’t read my blog so these are some of their presents.

fish.png

Not from Alaska Sausage, from Fred Meyers, not the seafood dept.

 

choc.png

Looks delicious, I hope they share

 

ling.png

A classy looking gift for about 10 bucks

Now I must go because it is time to bake. Then I will go downtown and buy a dreidl because I want to get the residents of the nursing home where I work to earn their gelt.

 

trees.png

Happy Hoarfrost to you, and to all a good night!

 

 

 

 

Where have I been? What have I done?

http://www.geekswhodrink.com/venue/private-events/49th-state-brewing-company/20160725/t-1469586402-img_0282jpg.jpg

I haven’t been writing because my computer is trashed. This is being written on my mini droid. I have been trying to get out and live the summer life, as in playing bar trivia with my roommate above. 

Here are some of the many berries I picked and ate this summer.I have managed not to turn on the television since May. 

And a city of fungus I passed on a hike.

Here is my friend St. Francis setting sail on a mushroom cap in our rain swamped yard.

What I look like when I have prepared for a commercial shoot which was cancelled due to rain but allowed me a two hour nap before having to go back to work.

Imagine that. It’s raining even now but we did get a mighty rainbow last week. Maybe after the big election we will see a rainbow of sorts. We can only hope and vote.

The fair starts this week so there will probably be more rain but I haven’t melted yet so I’m not so much a witch as I pretend to be.

 I can’t show you the beluga whales I saw because a photo would not do them justice. Just trust that it has been a magnificent hot and rainy summer up here in Alaska. Any tomato will tell you so.

Want to move to Alaska?

Image

 Welcome to Alaska – A little ice, some icy snow with quaint ambient lighting

I hear it’s pretty cold everywhere else! Well, I need a new roommate and you only have to share the bathroom with two other people. January is the new April for us in AK. The average temperature is a balmy 30 degrees Fahrenheit.  Not bad for keeping meat fresh in your trunk. It melts a little during the day. You could scrape something like hamburger  and make a patty out of the outside layer while the inner slab of meaty-ness will stay frozen for a long stretch.

If you like to drink we have lots of ice. Lots. 4 to 6 inches thick on my driveway. My roommate and I tried to  use an ice tool on it but we only managed to clear a 20 ‘ x 1’ walkway and then some chunky dings for the other 30 ‘ down so we could practice our ice climbing.

I’m afraid there is no skiing. None of any kind, due to  our preference for ice.   There is some “light” occasionally during the day time, but don’t count on it.  We get fresh fruit and vegetables but that means they were fresh before they got put on the barge a week ago, far, far, away.  Stick with the frozen meat.

We do have some lovely sunsets in the winter which you will be lucky to see if you get out of work early.

Image

I left work early this day, don’t tell anyone.

We get bonus colors because the sun reflects on the great amount of ice we have!

Image

You’ve heard of black ice, this is pink ice, equally dangerous but pretty.

There are many jobs, especially wanted are ice sculptors. We get our famous Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend each year which usually goes to prevent ice from forming on our faces as we sleep. 

All in all, it’s better than being really hot isn’t it? That’s what I tell myself about getting older as well.

 

 

How cold is too cold in Alaska?

 

Image

Trucks on the ice – must be cold!

 

1.   When  Sarah Palin starts to look warm hearted.

2.   When your Baked Alaska gives you frostbite through the oven mitts.

3.  When your fahrenheit temp. has reverted to lower than your celcius, ( around -41 F)

4.  When even babies have white beards.

5.  When you have to put your Slurpee in the microwave.

6.  When at 3:30 pm,  they turn the heat off at work to save money, and you start losing consciousness. (Is that just me?)

7. When the utility of puffy coats outweighs the absolute horror of their fashion wrongness.

8.  There are none of those statue/mime people like in San Francisco here because they would die.

9.  When everyone looks like they’re ready to rob a bank.

10.  When you see a pile of garbage and there’s no ravens – that means it’s too damn cold!

 

White Hot Anchorage!

Posted on

The temperature has hit 90 degrees F only a few times since I’ve lived here.

Today is one of them. I’ve noticed some strange things going on

 

 

1.The glaciers are no longer melting. They’re boiling then evaporating. Some are bursting into flames

2. Burnt humans covered with mosquito bites behave badly, like Khardashians.

3. Wearing sunglasses at 10 pm is like wearing fleece, silly, but sometimes necessary.

4. People here don’t have summer clothes but everyone seems to have capri pants which should  be destroyed at the end of the week for the sake of all that is good in humanity.

5. Working folk and retirees alike  realize that they complain about the weather no matter what it is, because they like to complain. This leads to a dark night of the soul, which lasts about 2 hours.

6. Salmon jumping into dip nets, already poached.

Hot dog

Hot lava Dog

7.  Superheroes have been called up to zap the evil planet emitting death rays.

Khannnnn you pass me the Coppertone?

Khannnnn you pass me the Coppertone?

8. Not to be outdone, the female of the species Homo Sapiens is building woman caves.

The view from my personal cave

The view from my personal cave

9.  People who moved from the East Coast to California, then to The Pacific Northwest, all the way to Alaska are now feeling what it’s like to be stepped on by their own carbon footprint.

10.  I was vaporized today while rollerblading

Radiation shadow left by a female, about 6' 4" on rollerblades

Radiation shadow left by a female, about 6′ 4″ on rollerblades