Are We Turning Into Weather Wimps?

Connie McKinneyStarred Page By Connie McKinney, 28th Jan 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/1woke_m_/
Posted in Wikinut>News>Environment

Some people rush to the grocery store, stock up on food and cancel all appointments when they hear the weather forecast calling for 3 inches of snow. Are we becoming a nation of weather wimps?

Different Perspectives on Weather


More than 3.5 feet of snow fell and buried cars, shut down all businesses and sent snow drifts soaring to 12 feet in some places.
That was the scene during the Blizzard of 93, which took place in March 1993. I lived in a small city in Central New York state at the time and had never seen so much snow. Yet, some people who had grown up in Buffalo, New York called us "weather wimps." They lived through snowstorms which dumped way more snow than 3.5 feet.
We all have different perspectives on the weather depending on where we live and what we're used to. Some of us think 3.5 feet of snow is a lot while others think 3.5 inches is a major snowstorm. Some people think 45 degrees Fahrenheit is cold enough to bundle up. Others wear shorts in that weather.
A lot of people overreact to the winter weather. They grumble, panic and buy up every last loaf of bread at the grocery store. Why not cope with it the best you can and take it in stride?

A Cold Winter


It is true that the United States is having a tough winter this year. In my corner of Upstate New York, today's high temperature is supposed to be 10 degrees Fahrenheit. Temperatures dropped well below zero overnight. Add in the wind chill factor of 15 degrees below zero, and it's no wonder some people are shivering.
Some areas of the country aren't used to this type of weather. States as far south as Georgia and Florida could see snow and temperatures falling below freezing today. I sympathize with these folks because they don't have the snow plow equipment and the ability to deal with winter conditions like we do here in the Northeast.
It's only January, and there have already been several snowstorms. No doubt there are more to come. But none of them compare to the storm which hit nearly 21 years ago.

Why Some People Are Weather Wimps


It happens every winter. The weather forecast calls for a few inches of snow. Then, the rush to the grocery stores happens. These panicked people grab every last loaf of bread, bottle of milk and can of tuna - convinced they'll be snowed in for days.
When was the last time this actually happened? I still remember seeing pickup trucks loaded with snow blowers and driving through unplowed streets the morning after the Blizzard of 93. Most people even made it to work the next morning although some people were still digging out.
Then, there are the people who cancel appointments before one snowflake falls from the sky. Don't forget the schools that close for 3 inches of snow. The kids can't make it to school yet they flock to the mall during the snow days. Some children spend the day sledding down a big hill located next to a school - which closed due to the weather.
One reason why people are turning into weather wimps is the media. Weather forecasters hype the forecast and make it sound so much worse than it really is. A 3-inch snowstorm gets a name. A 6-inch snowstorm is called Snowmageddon. Talk about blowing things out of proportion.
I also believe people get used to a few mild winters and forget what winter weather can be like. There has been very little snow and hardly any below zero days the last couple of winters. As cold as it has been so far this winter, it still doesn't compare to other, harsher winters when the thermometers dipped even lower.

Taking the Weather in Stride


It's true that below zero temperatures combined with a wind chill can be dangerous. People can get frostbite within 15 minutes and can die of hypothermia if they stay outdoors too long. Once again, agencies in my area such as the Salvation Army are hard at work rounding up homeless people and making sure nobody sleeps outside. See Coping With the Cold.
However, as long as you take a few precautions, you should be able to cope with the cold and snow without any problems. Bundle up, limit your time outside and don't let the kids play outside. Drive slowly in snowy conditions and use common sense. Don't drive during an ice storm, freezing rain or heavy snow.
Keep in mind that other forms of weather are far more destructive than winter weather. Floods can literally wash your home away in minutes. Hurricanes and tornadoes can blow your home apart. But the snow comes, and it goes. It melts away every spring, and life goes on.
Make the best of the weather, and don't let it get you down. Just remember: what you consider cold might be shorts weather up in Buffalo.

Here is an article I did on why I love winter
Here is one on a fun winter activity, cross country skiing

Here is one I did on the Flood of 2011

Here is one on flood heroes
Here is one on furry flood refugees


Attribution:
I took all the pictures myself.

Tags

Cold, Cold Weather, Snow, Snows, Weather, Weather Conditions, Weather Winter, Winter, Winters

Meet the author

author avatar Connie McKinney
I enjoy exercising, pets, and volunteering as well as writing about these topics and others.

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Comments

author avatar Phyl Campbell
28th Jan 2014 (#)

Great! I feel I am turning into a weather wimp. The trouble here is the quick change from shorts weather to snow and back in the same week. But I like the way you wrote this...

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author avatar MarilynDavisatTIERS
28th Jan 2014 (#)

Good afternoon, Connie, I see the other weather wimp, Phyl has checked in as well. I'm in Georiga. It is snowing and they let schools out early today. I'm perfectly content to watch it, however, we do tend to panic - your apt description of the peanut butter, bread, milk and tuna stockpiling made me laugh. Phyl has a good point about how much our weather fluctuates. So, my animals have food, I have food, tea in good supply, coffee for a few days. I'm good. Thanks for a great article. ~Marilyn

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
28th Jan 2014 (#)

I grew up in New England and went to college in the Finger Lakes area od upstate New York, and I must admit I'm a world-class weather wimp, which is why I upped and moved to California in the sixties. Great post, Connie. I really enjoyed it.

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author avatar Connie McKinney
28th Jan 2014 (#)

Phyl and Marilyn, I sometimes turn into a weather wimp myself. Stay warm.

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author avatar Jerry Walch
28th Jan 2014 (#)

Hi Connie,
I'm a man for all seasons. I love it all--hot weather, cold weather, and in-between weather.

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author avatar cnwriter..carolina
28th Jan 2014 (#)

great post Connie...I shivered as I read it...so descriptive it is...sharing....keep warm...

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author avatar Fern Mc Costigan
29th Jan 2014 (#)

This past year in Portland we almost had snow and didint stick and everyone was so alarm like headless chickens, great and true post filled with a lot of facts!

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author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
29th Jan 2014 (#)

I am not turning into a winter wimp, I always was one. I never enjoyed driving in the winter, and I dislike being out in the cold.

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author avatar Connie McKinney
29th Jan 2014 (#)

Thanks Fern, Carolina, Jerry and Steve. Stay warm, all.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
29th Jan 2014 (#)

I am in tropical Asian climate but at 23 degree Centigrade - unusually cold this time around! I think one gets used to it unless the weather becomes too extreme for comfort. Nice perspective Connie, thanks - siva

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author avatar Delicia Powers
29th Jan 2014 (#)

Great and timely article Connie...I love being outside- but this winter I am a major wimp...LOL....thanks Connie...

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author avatar Connie McKinney
29th Jan 2014 (#)

Thanks, Siva. I didn't realize even Asia was colder than normal. The whole world is cold this winter, apparently.

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author avatar Connie McKinney
29th Jan 2014 (#)

Delicia, I don't blame you. Lots of people are weather wimps this year. Stay warm.

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author avatar Connie McKinney
29th Jan 2014 (#)

Steve, what a small world. I live about an hour from the Finger Lakes region and visit there to hike during the spring, summer and fall. I will give you different advice being that you're in California: Stay cool.

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author avatar Mariah
29th Jan 2014 (#)

Winter is a great excuse to get the pj's on early evening and sit close to the fire.so .there's a lot to be said for being a winter wimp ha ha good read Connie thank you

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author avatar Connie McKinney
30th Jan 2014 (#)

Mariah, I think it's definitely a good time to sit close to the fire. Thanks.

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author avatar Stella Mitchell
30th Jan 2014 (#)

I handle most weather pretty well Connie ...It's a case of needs must , so I get on with it as best as possible . In England, if it snows , the country tends to grind to a halt and the school children love it ... but it is the elderly I feel for , as they have to be so careful of slipping and breaking bones .
We are experiencing terrible flooding over great swathes of the countryside which is miserable for many householders .
I always enjoy your posts , so keep them coming
God bless you
Stella ><

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author avatar Connie McKinney
31st Jan 2014 (#)

I hope the flooding stops soon, Stella. I enjoy your posts as well and look forward to your next one.

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author avatar Ptrikha
21st May 2014 (#)

Perhaps sudden weather changes are making it more difficult. But yes, we also ought to know how to handle adverse weather with adequate precautions.

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author avatar Connie McKinney
21st May 2014 (#)

Good points, Ptrikha. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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