Snow Day

Growing up in Chicago, snow days will always have a special place in my heart. Even if, living in Tokyo, my idea of a snow day and my neighbors’ idea of snow day is… different. Well, except for the Canadian neighbors, eh?

One of the most complicated parts about snow is that it’s incredibly simple to deal with, if you have to deal with it all the time. Chicagoans have the infrastructure to deal with large amounts of snow. My old coworker didn’t, strictly speaking, need to park his Jeep on top of the 4m tall pile of snow the plows had made in the parking lot, but he could. Because he had the infrastructure, and the city had the infrastructure to clear all that snow off the roads so that there was a 4m tall pile large enough to park a car on in the first place. Tokyo… does not have that infrastructure.

I’ve seen people using kitchen knives to chip at sidewalk ice. I’ve seen people use teakettles to melt snow(it’s a bad idea, don’t do it.). But I’ve seen all the awesome fun things, too. Kids and adults building snowmen, which are anatomically different than American snowmen, interestingly enough. This last winter, I caught some pachinko parlor workers in Ginza building storefront snowmen in perhaps the most pleasant example of pachinko parlor marketing that I can recall.

As much as shoveling out the snow sucks, you gotta remember, when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. So you gotta get out there and take those photos when you get those crazy anomalous weather events.