May 20, 2013
Written by Joe Pisani
Wednesday, 05 January 2011 23:00
The first blizzard of the season put us into a winter state of mind, so for the next three months, all we’ll do is whine about the weather and worry about getting stranded on the tarmac at JFK, sitting beside someone with booze on his breath for seven hours.
The more fortunate among us daydream about vacationing at Hilton Head, while the really fortunate actually do it. The rest of us slog through Manhattan and get slush thrown in our faces by passing cabs.
During the last storm, when I was taking a few “vacation days,” I spent my time shoveling the driveway while my neighbors tested their new snow-blowers.Then, in the true spirit of winter, I got sick as a dog and was hacking all night long, listening to my family add to the torment by yelling, “We can’t sleep with all that racket! Go to a hotel so we don’t get sick too!” Where would we be without compassionate family members?”
It was the worst blizzard in six years, and a lot of people never showed up at the office.
Call me foolhardy, but I’m proud to say I’ve never missed a day because of snow.
About a month ago, I had an argument with a young colleague who insisted that I didn’t make it to work during a storm last winter. After a long argument, we checked with the woman who keeps the official record, and she concluded, “This Baby Boomer came to work even during blizzards.”
That’s more than I can say for that fellow who takes off for inclement weather, not to mention “party recuperation.” The threat of a snowstorm turns the world upside down. Most offices grind to a halt because everyone is busy surfing the Web looking at radar maps and listening for school cancellations 48 hours before the storm starts.
Whenever there’s the forecast of snow, a lot of people waste the day looking out the window waiting for the first flakes to fall, and pretty soon Human Resources starts getting calls like, “When can we leave?” and “Will the company pay for my hotel room?”
If that doesn’t work, the CEO starts getting pelted with e-mail like, “Hey, it’s snowing. Are you going to shut down the company or risk our lives?” The wise CEO shuts down the place for the season.
I suppose that’s another reason America is lagging behind in the trade deficit.
Do you think workers in China are bugging their bosses with e-mail that say, “Comrade, there could be an avalanche in the village — can I work from home?”
At my last job, the HR director would usually send out announcements that said, “All NON-ESSENTIAL personnel may leave at 3 p.m.”
But who wants to get caught creeping out the back door and be classified as “non-essential” in the era of double-digit unemployment?
Maybe the wisest course of action would be a corporate relocation to Hilton Head, which would eliminate the need for snow days and let a lot more of us take a vacation.
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