Singing the Snow Blues


Okay, okay, we get it: Mother Nature’s in charge.

Back in 1978 I wrote in my high school paper that I got cabin fever and opened a window, only to be buried in a collapsing drift. My attitude toward winter hasn’t changed. Winter itself did for a while, taking a temporary break … maybe vacationing in Siberia. Now it’s back, and as sometimes happens when people return from a break, it’s back with a vengeance.

(When I get back from vacation, I just want more vacation.)

We got within a smidgen (technical term, there) of hitting the all-time record amount of snow for winter in this area, at an estimated forty stories. The only thing standing in our way is one winter in the early 80’s, when we had so much snow the spring melt formed Lake Mississippi.

            We also broke five low temperature records this winter. At least one of the old records dates back to the winter after I was born; imagine a six month old in a house heated by one coal-burning furnace, with temperatures in the minus teens. That’s how I grew up to be me.      

            There have been many songs written about snow. My favorite title is by Frank Zappa: “Don’t Eat The Yellow Snow”. Very good advice, especially in a household like mine (with a dog).

            Speaking of dogs, the first time I let mine out after the last big snowstorm he took two steps into the back yard, sank up to his chest (he weighs almost 100 pounds) then turned around to stare at me. I know exactly what he was thinking: “You want me to go out in that?

            I shoveled him a pee place. Yes, I did, and maybe someday I’ll write a song about that.

            Some people feel differently about snow, although this year more of them seem to be coming over to my side. From a music standpoint, there’s actually a group called Snow Patrol. They had to change their phone number. People kept calling: “I got your snow right here! You don’t need to patrol for it!”

            There’s a character in a TV show called “The Year Without a Santa Claus” named Snow Miser. Gotta be the bad guy, right? Here are some lyrics from his song:

“I’m Mister White Christmas, I’m Mister Snow

I’m Mister Icicle, I’m Mister Ten Below.

Friends call me Snow Miser, whatever I touch

Turns to snow in my clutch. I’m too much!”

            Yes, you are. And what, you have friends?

            Several weeks ago I watched White Christmas. I thought it was a horror movie; turns out it’s a musical. Or maybe it is a horror flick, considering these lyrics from the song—yes—“Snow”:

“It won’t’ be long before we’ll all be there with snow.


I want to wash my hands, my face and hair with snow.”

            Yeah, and I want to have you committed. I hope at least you’re not washing with the yellow snow.

The Red Hot Chili Peppers seemed to more or less like it in their song “Snow (Hey Oh)”, which I would have titled “Snow (Oh No)”. In fact, I would have changed these lyrics:

“Deep beneath the cover of another perfect wonder

Where it’s so white as snow.”


“Buried in my covers I scream out my horrors

Of another &%#@! Foot of snow.”

Why, yes, I am searching for a job as a lyricist … say in Los Angeles, where it gets cold so seldom that an inch of snow can bring out the National Guard.

            Anyway, I didn’t take the time to write my own song about snow, because my fingers can only type for so long before I have to soak them in hot water. So instead, I took a famous “Christmas” song, “Let It Snow”—which has nothing to do with Christmas at all—and put in more realistic lyrics:

Well, the snow just keeps on flying,

Stupid groundhog wasn’t lying.

Into cabin fever hell we go;

Stop the snow, stop the snow, stop the snow!

This cursed white fluff ain’t stopping.

We’ll soon starve without some shopping.

There’s no way to get out we know,

Stop the snow, stop the snow, stop the snow!

Someday the days could turn nice,

I’d pay for that with my own blood.

But I know that we’d pay the price:

When the snow melts into a big flood.

I feel like my soul is dying

If my outlook changed I’d be lying.

I’m tired of this ice show:

Stop the snow, stop the snow, stop the snow!

It ain’t Shakespeare. But it’s from the heart.


  1. Well, think of it this way. It can't last forever, right?

    1. I keep telling myself that, but every year I'm not certain ...

  2. This is hilarious. And if I'm lucky, I'll have that Snow Miser song stuck in my head the rest of the day (the version by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy is great). Also, White Christmas is a wonderful movie.

    That said, it hit sixty degrees here yesterday. The fields have turned into lakes, and the other night, there was standing water covering the road on my drive home. It was such a beautiful sight I almost started to cry. Thank God it's spring(ish) at last! :D

    1. We're going through that too, although sadly the new road ponds will freeze over tomorrow night. But you're right, White Christmas is a wonderful movie -- and now I'm off to look up another version of Snow Miser

  3. Your Blog and William Kendall's Blog keep right on reminding me why I retired to the desert! I've seen snow once in thirteen years. By the way, my house (where I grew up in Iowa & temps could be well below zero) did not have an oil furnace. An ornate coal burner in the living room, a pot belly (red) wood or coal burner in the dining room, and, of course, the wood burning (but we used cobs) Kalamazoo monstrosity in the kitchen. There was one register for upstairs and that went to my little brother's room. When the snow gets too much for you & your wife, remember the desert. It's beautiful.

    1. Luckily my childhood home didn't have an upstairs -- it was cold enough downstairs, with that one coal burning furnace in the basement! But we changed over to propane about the time I hit my teens, which at least made the heat more even.

      Don't be surprised if we come visit you someday in the dead of winter!

  4. I'm betting Snow Miser has no friends...except maybe William....

  5. You're making me think of that song from White Christmas - Snow, snow, snow, snow, sno-w-w-w-w.
    It has been one tough winter for a lot of us.

    1. “It won’t’ be long before we’ll all be there with snow.


      I want to wash my hands, my face and hair with snow.”

      Yeah, that lady's nuts. And so's the movie, come to think of it.