Apparently Eskimos have 248 words for snow. Well, actually, I made up that number, but the whole point is that Eskimos have a frickin load of words for snow.
People throw this statistic around with wonder and admiration, no doubt thinking “those crazy eskimos and their snow.” In actuality Eskimos don’t have 248 words for snow. They have 248 words for snow in different contexts. For instance we call melted snow “water” and of course, so do they. But some idiot decided that water is one of their ways of talking about snow. Who can blame them anyway, they live in snow, they are at one with snow, they bloody love that snow.
I don’t blame them of course, snow is beautiful. The Eskimos (Inuits if you want to be politically correct) understand how beautiful snow is. They make films about it, make music about it and they write books about it. Probably not surprising really, with a language totally based on snow related topics, I guess there’s nothing else to talk about.
As it turns out the Eskimos have a little stat for the English as well, probably one you’ve never heard since you’re not an Eskimo (if you are, I’d like to know how you get wireless in an igloo.) The Eskimos say that “apparently the English have 248 words for breasts” and as it turns out, the Eskimos are right.
So why all this talk of snow? Unless you live under a rock you’ll know that today is a snow day. Even if you did live under a rock you’d probably know about it due to the fact that every person in the UK seems to be an amateur meteorologist. All we talk about is the damn weather, there is no escape. No matter what weather is coming up tomorrow there’ll always be someone around to pucker their lips and say “it’s going to snow tomorrow you know” or “did you hear, heat wave next week” or even just simply shouting “RAIN! RAIIIINNNNNN!” at you.
Never have I woken up in the morning to look out at the world and find to my surprise that the world is covered in snow. More often than not this is because I’ve been reminded of it’s arrival from multiple people, multiple times, days before the event has happened. Quite often I’ll be lying in bed and get awoken by the phone “hello, Dan? It’s me Matthew Beaty. We haven’t spoken in 6 years and I had to trawl the internet for your phone number but I thought you should know something really important: it’s about to snow!” Woah, really! Call back when it’s sunny…oh…and you’re dead. Stop reminding me of the weather, thanks.
And so it snowed and the world was happy, but I was a miserable bastard. Of course the first thing you do on a snow day is the annoying process of making a snowball. Snowballs are fun. Or rather, snowballs are fun to throw at people, but if you’re like me when you eventually get a taste of your own medicine, and a snowball flies full force into your face you’ll go into a week long sulk and refuse to speak to anyone. That’s how I roll.
As I left the house this morning I realised there are stages to snow, written in many an expert snow book, but thankfully you don’t have to buy “Snow – Those Crazy Eskimos Love It You Know!” to find out what these stages are. Instead I shall tell you right now with the power of THE INTERNET.
1. Soft snow stage.
Like candy floss but not as tasty, especially when it’s yellow. So beautiful, I love snow! Woo! I wish it would snow everyday!
2. Crunchy snow stage.
Lovely soft snow has settled, now it gives a lovely crunch when you walk over it and compress it. It’s like walking on biscuits but more romantic. I love snow! It’s so great! WOO!
3. Evil slush stage.
The snow is starting to melt. My feet are getting wet and cold. I hate snow. Why does it fucking snow?! NOBODY LIKES SNOW! GO AWAY YOU DAMN SNOW!
4. Water stage.
Not actually snow but the last stage. Goodbye snow, I shall miss you.
From time to time these stages are interrupted by the dreaded X stage. So named because it’s Xtreme of course. The X stage is random and can happen at any time, day or night. Sub-zero temperatures turn the snow into ice. Ice isn’t snow. Ice is evil! You shall slip, you shall slide, you shall lose your sense of balance and everyone shall laugh at you!
Now though I’m going to tell you a secret. You can replicate the X stage. There’s a certain method with which you can turn crunchy snow into a death slide. Here it is.
1. Find a large piece of path where noone has stood in the snow.
2. Push the snow down all across the path with your foot, savouring the crunch.
3. Slide your foot along the pushed down snow until it is smooth and slippery.
4. Take some snow from elsewhere on the path and sprinkle it across your death trap.
5. Hide a short way away and watch as an 80 year old slips in the snow.
I wouldn’t encourage making one of these so called death slides, I’m a nice guy after all. But if you manage to take down one of your fellow weather-obsessed Englishmen, I wont blame you.
(Yes, I see the irony in hating people that talk about the weather all the time and posting all about the weather, so sue me.)