Emerald Specter 32: Weather Sucks

Writing these words, I hear the howling of the wintery wind outside. I try to stay warm but there isn’t much that can be done as I hopelessly stare out at the white flakes being hurled through the sky. Some flakes impact on the neighboring condominium rooftop, other fly silently into the distance, never to be seen again by my eyes.

Trees without leaves are blown, side to side, by the impulsive and powerful wind. The force of the sky not common in this kind of way, normally knocking down trees and causing power lines to be broken with such ferocity that the sounds of explosions can be heard in the distance when transformers end their existence or lose their connections. There is a sadness that comes when this happens, but not during this time of year, as trees are frozen into place and the wind howls throughout the day.

An unspeakable horror, one that cannot be explained, has gripped the area in which I live. There is a blackness to the white, a blackness that is more evil and sinister because it cannot be seen as the white is. A gray, pale sky and the flying flakes or snow cause the whitewashed exterior of my home to lead me to believe I am in a prison.

I feel like I’m writing Lovecraft there.

So, for the second straight day, the weather is so bad that local authorities are requiring us to remain where we are, or at least stay off the roads unless you absolutely have to be out. If you are out on the Interstate or other highways, at this point, you are legally required to put chains on your vehicle or you could be fined. Let me write that again: legally required to have chains.

I’m from a place where what is happening right now, we really just call it “Tuesday.” This is, of course, not a Tuesday, but I’m seeing how terrible others are at preparing for winter weather. Portland isn’t the best prepared to battle the weather, as North Dakota is, but at least the accidents are mostly happening in the “transition weather,” when the wet turns into ice and people aren’t paying the closest attention.

There are literally vehicles upside down in ditches here, and I’m not even sure how to get a vehicle to do that unless you’re traveling at highly unsafe speeds, especially for the conditions.

Ideally, if I could, I would like in a bubble world. There wouldn’t be unruly wind, snow wouldn’t exist except exactly where we mean to put it (for, let’s say, skiing or snowboarding), and rain doesn’t pour down on you on your one day off a week that you’d like to spend outside doing something interesting.

We tend to forget the numerous days of good weather we enjoy when something like this snowy waste blows in. In North Dakota, the “doom and gloom” of winter is the better part of six months, and if you want to talk about being depressed, well… living in North Dakota, even with good weather, is depressing.

I am writing this, my second column in two days, because I’m sequestered in my home and unable to travel anywhere interesting that I’d planned to because the roads are not nice to be out on. I have looked ahead, because I am also working on this website’s schedule, and notice the numerous columns that I used to have that have long since been abandoned. I have wondered if I should resurrect them or not.

They were columns like Game Specter, where I discussed RPG style games… and I believe I could expand that to include board games as well, or even include the “once in a while” app games that I play (like Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes). I am contemplating putting that one back into rotation later in the year and we’ll see how I’m doing with all of my other things I’m doing as well as my bullet journalling.

Other columns were more self explanatory: UFC Specter (where I talked about the UFC events that were coming up… this one is difficult to do because in order to be timely, I’d have to write the column nearly real time, not write and set up for a future release), Ingress Intel (where I discussed the mobile game Ingress, long before Pokemon Go, that I haven’t really been playing much as of late), Chess Specter (where the topic was chess, and similarly to the UFC Specter, this one would have to be timely in the sense that chess also has events, but I could preload some stories that aren’t really related to the event circuit), Storytelling Specter (where the discussion was writing… but if I’m not writing, talking about writing seems a little silly), and of course you know I’m already bringing back SpecterFit (sans events). That was a lot and I was early writing what I could but I just couldn’t keep up with all of that.

What makes me think I can do it now?

Well, for one, weather sucks and when it does, I’m not going to go outside. That means I can write some columns. I also can write ahead of time (for those things that don’t need to be timely). For example, every day off I have has been designated as a writing day. Well, technically just Sundays, but because my bullet journal let me have a little more time to prepare and plan, that included a couple extra days to get ahead. If I can get far enough ahead on this one, and I can get a few columns written ahead enough to allow me time to “fumble through life,” then I can get the rotation back and in full swing again.

I keep referencing it, but I need to explain how useful the bullet journal has been. Yesterday, I had a long ass list of things to do and because I didn’t think they’d take too much time, I put them all on the same day. Well, having lived through yesterday and seeing how much I didn’t get done that didn’t require me to leave the house, I realize I overbooked the day. Lesson learned. I can work on that for future installments. That also means I can pre-plan things better and not overload myself with things so I can have some time to do other things… like record other bits of information that I am interested in keeping… like health stats, weather details, temperatures, and notes about what I did that specific day.

I should write my next column all about the bullet journal, I guess.

Until then, the weather sucks and I’m staying indoors.

Think on it.