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Shows & Panels
DC loses 'Winter Weenie City' title
Tuesday - 2/18/2014, 2:00am EST
For decades politicians, pundits and ordinary folks have had lots of fun at the expense of the federal workers (and officials) who toil and live inside and around the Beltway.
Especially in winter.
Most especially when it snows.
That's because we have a reputation (deserved, up to a point) for having clam-like backbones when the weather gets tough. Every time the government is shut down (even though it is never actually shut down) here, people who sled- dog to the office in Alaska or get their kids to school on moose-drawn sleighs in Maine love to pile on. Folks in Chicago and Boston chortle when we succumb to snowfall and temperatures they find almost beach-like.
No one has yet been able to explain why people here — even if they grew up in real places like Indiana and Michigan — feel compelled to stampede supermarkets to restock our now infamous survival kits: White bread, white milk and toilet paper rules!
Folks in Buffalo, Detroit and St. Paul always have the same comment about Washington's winter willies: Really!?
A couple of years back President Obama played the Chicago card. He chuckled that D.C. schools had been closed by a little snow that wouldn't have phased the Windy City. But he got it wrong. The school his kids attend did close (many say wisely) but D.C. schools on that particular day were open for business as usual.
After the brutal winter so many of us have had, it is possible people beyond the Beltway will cut us a little slack in the future. Schools were closed in Northeastern cities that "never" close. Government offices in many places in the far North closed because of snow, ice and just plain old cold.
Officials in Atlanta discovered that ice-covered roads can really be slippery. And that it is not wise to tell people to come into work then all go home at the same time. That's something we learned a long time ago.
People and places that said they would never, ever give in to Old Man Winter have now been deflowered and lost their bragging rights.
So now that so many of you have joined so many of us in surrendering to the elements, it's confession time: What's in your survival kit? Let us know at: firstname.lastname@example.org
NEARLY USELESS FACTOID
Compiled by Jack Moore
A lecturer of surgery at London's Imperial College says Leonardo Da Vinci's "Vitruvian Man" — the artist's famous drawing of a male figure, designed to show ideal human proportions — appears to have suffered from an inguinal hernia.
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