A blizzard is coming. On Twitter, I saw a city official use the hashtag #icezilla. I was instantly soothed. I was looking for a name. NYC has had other names that I can remember in the recent past: Snow-pocolypse, Snow-mageddon. I wanted something contemporary that I could share with my coworkers over mediocre coffee and we could chuckle at the media’s sensationalist tendency, at or own awe.
It is predicted to be one of the three worst snow storms in the city’s history, according to our Mayor. I repeated announcement to J, who looked up from the NY Times Magazine from the comfort of his side of the bed and said, “Do you want me to get all stressed out with you?”
I did not want the comment or its snark, but it was a good question. I suppose my tone was a little high pitch, the pace a bit quickened. It wasn’t that I wanted to be soothed, but rather agreed with. And, then once it had been established that my concern was appropriate on a Sunday night, when really what the fuck are we going to do about an impending snow storm anyway, to be told that we would be okay. “We” being everyone that I cared about. This is very different from being told that “everything” will be okay, which even children know that’s a tall tale.
A couple of years ago, an early October snow dampened the trees in Fort Green park so much that their branches slouched and sagged under its weight. Once the snow had stopped, a jogger entered the park and was struck and killed by one of these branches. I was at the time struck by the casualness and indifference of it.
Give me a name, or an even better, a cataclysmic event for my worry and I’m on it. I’m at Fairway stocking up, riveted to CNN, but I think it is, in a way, selfish. The storm will shake out cities in the North East in only the way that nature can.