The heightened frenzy and repetitive nature of Advance Doppler’s warnings and updates leads me to believe that the storm trackers dotting the tri-state area are gravely serious about this weather pattern. Any doubts about the storm’s severity have been swept away in a gust of coastal winds and tidal flooding. While it’s been no weather picnic in the Garden State, I consider myself lucky. Folks in Quincy, Massachusetts have been met with hurricane force winds and flooding prompting the hashtag #don’tdrownturnaround. Let’s hope that before you turn around, you have the foresight to stock your pantry with marshmallows, a block of 60% dark chocolate and add a gallon of milk to your refrigerator inventory.
Personally, the best defense for the resolution-prone first month of the year is to ignore the advice of every New Year, New You, Listicle. Yes, I hear you, Mindfulness and Meditation, but I’m not listening. Ditto for the 100 Pushup Challenge, Food Journaling, and Learning a New Language. Aren’t the days spent struggling to string coherent thoughts together from one’s everyday language considered sufficient challenge? Adding push-ups to the list seems particularly cruel for someone with wrists impacted by daily pie shell rolling. In my little world, it is best to embrace the New Year with the same fervor that I embrace my horoscope; with diminished expectations.
There is a new calendar in the house with watercolor illustrations of faraway destinations. Flipping the pages to January, I discover the Caribbean, replete with palm fronds, bare toes curling across warm sand, and sapphire skies. NPR’s coverage of the Bomb Cyclone feels the need to assault my senses with the harsh audio realism of snow plows scraping against mountains of rock salt. The contrast to my Caribbean fantasy is simultaneously sharp and painful. Public Radio does offer however, a playlist of songs for weathering the storm.
Rummaging through my kitchen cabinet for that block of dark chocolate, I grab a collection of Caribbean-inspired warm spices and crank up the radio following NPR’s ‘Songs for Storms” advice. January’s blitzkrieg of winter calls for a strong defense; I will call in my reliable cavalry of baked goods and hot chocolate. I give myself bonus points for baking something dunkable in hot chocolate. Because Advance Doppler Radar is unclear as to the duration of the winter storm, I roll out a pie shell for good measure. New Year? Agreed. Same Old Me? As highly predictable as a Bomb Cyclone in January.