Blizzard of ’77

Sure, it stunk getting into work this morning, then I got the reminder about this lovely storm from somebody who had the termerity to not be alive when it hit. 33 years ago today, I got a whiff of capitalism. Neighbors went to Florida two days before and hired me to shovel their driveway while they were away, figuring they’d pay me for a couple of passes. Can you say eight?? My best childhood chum and I went on a record purchasing bender at National Record Mart with our proceeds.

Till that storm, helping my dad with the snow removal largely consisted of staying out of the way while he ran our behemoth of a snow blower. Mom would say “perhaps you should help your dad.” I could sincerely reply “I am” while watching tv. This made sense as the snowblower was a big one and the last thing you needed while running it was somebody else “helping” at one end of the driveway.

This was mammoth snow and the blowing made things impressive until you had to move them. My childhood home had such an odd shape that a roughly eight foot wall formed outside the back door, but left enough of a canal to the garage that we could make it to the garage to access our “Battery of snow-fighting equipment.” It was a rare occurence as usually helping my Dad clear the driveway meant staying out of the line of fire (and usually inside), but I think even my brother was party of the relocation of the driveway campaign.

The winds made it a multiple day chore, but by the time the worst was over, I was an ace snowblower pilot and using that on those Florida bound neighbors, who are still stuck listening to everybody else’s Blizzard tales.

My longtime partner and crime used the almost two weeks off from school on some arctic architectural pursuits, constructing a snow fort still legendary in its expanse, two floors, complete with slide to get from the balcony level down to the mezzanine.

Even the neighborhood bully was impressed

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2 thoughts on “Blizzard of ’77”

  1. True life stories from my White Death-Blizzard of ’77 book are now used in schools to teach kids the dangers of winter disasters especially when cell phones did nor exist and land lines went dead. See http://www.whitedeath.com for pics and real frostbite. For a fun in the sun adventure my website provides Crystal Beach The Good Old Days, another 100 year local history of WNYork and Canada. Ride the front seat of the Comet roller coaster at my Youtube site ernoinferno77. But beware of snowflakes and jumps in birthrates 9 months after major blizzards.
    ERNO ROSSI

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