February 26, 2001

Beginning of the Road

By Dane Sorensen


Enough all ready. Thank you God for the snow, now please go do something else. I know you take joy in that each and every snowflake is unique, but so are daisies and I think I would rather have some of those about now rather than more snow to shovel. Yes, I admit I like winter a lot. I enjoy the fresh cold air. I enjoy the snow sculptures in the park. I think the forest has a beauty in winter that is almost magical. However, lower back pain from shoveling every day is not a nice thing.

I think almost everyone is ready for a good melt. It is time to show us that snow is really made of water. I miss the black pavement in my street. I am loosing the battle of the driveway. The piles on either side are getting too tall. When I toss a shovel full it only cascades down the side back to my feet. It reminds me of the early open pit mines around Ely and how the miners were forced to switch to underground mining. Unfortunately, I can't switch to an underground driveway. Only Batman has one of those.

It is getting to the point where I am starting to feel like Jack Nicholson in "The Shining." In that bizarre movie Jack goes nuts being cooped up in a snowed-in summer resort that he is baby-sitting. I am starting to have bizarre ideas on how to get rid of all this white stuff.

If a natural melt doesn't come soon, I know I will have to put my kids on snowmelting duty. I figure the youngest can bring in cups of snow and melt them in our microwave oven. The middle daughter can keep filling all our pots and pans and melting snow on our electric range. I get a warm feeling thinking about how much snow will fit into the turkey pan in the oven. My oldest daughter can shovel snow into our electric dryer and use that to melt a lot of snow. Meanwhile, I will be out with an extension cord and iron trying to melt the snow in our flower garden. I suppose the wool setting would work best. I am sure my helpful wife will man the garbage disposal and keep that unit busy eating snow. Between the five of us we can melt our whole yard of snow in a weekend.

I had thought of just mowing the back yard with the bagging attachment on the mower, but I don't know if the city compost area would accept my mower waste there.

If only we could figure out some way to sell this stuff. Why doesn't someone open a snowcone factory? Heaven knows we need new industry in this town. With nine months of winter and only three months of summer it doesn't take a genius to realize we need to utilize our cold. It is free and cheap and the government has no restrictions on mining snow. We should have ice cream factories, frozen food processing plants, a cold pack factory, cold storage warehouses and things like that. Just think how cheap we could produce popsicles. The nice thing is each and every frozen item made would take away some of the snow. That brings a warm spot to my heart. We could even bag snow and sell it as champagne chilling ice. Why the New Years Eve demand for that alone would take hundreds of truckloads of the white stuff. The great thing is with all our free cold snow we would have the most energy efficient factories in the country.

All we need to do is go ask the IRRRB to fund these energy saving ideas. Why make frozen orange juice in Florida. It would be far cheaper to let us freeze oranges naturally rather than have a Florida factory use billions of kilowatts to freeze all those oranges. California, with their electricity shortage, should be willing to help us fund a few orange juice factories as well.

If we can keep the environmentalists in the dark, before you know it we will create a cold shortage. We might actually end up with four months of summer instead of three. It would be a high price to pay to provide the world with cheap natural frozen orange juice, but I am willing to sacrifice some of my winter for that noble cause.

That would be a far more sensible solution to all this snow than my ironing down snow piles with my General Electric iron. Some times my great business ideas just scare me because they are so good. My wife says my business ideas scare her all the time. I guess when you've got it, you've got it good.


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