Even I Have Had Enough

I’m on the record saying that any Canadians who complain about the weather should be deported. Our shitty awful weather should be a source of national pride, up there with other celebrated institutions like the National Hockey League, Medicare, and our unelected senate. It’s something to be endured with a healthy dose of body fat and a level of machismo usual reserved for men in the Polar Bear Club, who like to take a sub-zero dip in an icy lake and then strut around proudly like their penises haven’t just shriveled away to the size of a raisin. And yet…

Yesterday, we woke up to the end results of a snowfall that has officially shattered all previous records for the most amount of snow in a single winter season. It’s been relentlessly white all winter. Even with a few periods of heavy melting that reduced what’s on the ground to about half as much as it might have been had it remained below freezing all through these past few months, the amount of snow stacked outside is unbelievable. While I was clearing a western-front-style trench through the front path so the rescue dogs could find us, I realized the pile of snow on the lawn was now about as tall as I am. And I’m not a little man. It’s now a full-body aerobic workout to fling the snow high enough to make it to the top of the stack. The possibility of an avalanche is very real.

This also marks the first winter I’ve had to go out on the roof to shovel off the snow before even more fell and threatened to cave our house in. Lifting tens of tons of snow and dropping it off the side of a building during high winds and a blizzard is one of those uniquely Canadian pastimes that made me want to don a beaver-pelt cap and sing O Canada! just to further enhance the experience. Unfortunately, all the beavers were wisely hiding in their dams, and the O Canada! anthem has too many words and syllables to get through when you’re so physically exhausted you can’t declare anything more complex than, “O fuck!”, “O my heart!”, and “O honey, could you call an ambulance and find my Medicare card?”

After shoveling the roof and the path multiple times, the driveway still remains undone. I’ve informed my wife that as far as I’m concerned, we don’t own a car. Not until April at least. The nebulous blob under all that snow could be anything. You can’t even definitively say it’s car-shaped. It might be the Donner party.

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