Another ‘Walking Dead’ kind of day in the Southland


I had already made the comparison between the recent weather-related apocalypse in Atlanta and “Walking Dead,” but I had somehow missed this post providing photographic evidence.

Whoa. It even includes “survivors” shuffling through the wreckage, in images very like those from everyone’s fave zombie TV show. Check it out. The main visual difference is that in the real-life shots, everything is icy, while it seems like it’s always sweltering summer on “Walking Dead.”

And today, I look out around me, and except for the presence of shuffling undead, this could indeed be the end of all we knew. My iPad just chimed to tell me that “Nearly 52,000 SCE&G customers [are] without power.”

Right now, I’m listening to Nikki Haley’s live briefing. She says T-Rav’s Daddy’s bridge is closed again…

Days such as this remind me of a dream I used to have, decades ago. All you Freudians, prepare to take notes…

I would dream that I was in a house that was seemingly miles from any road or sign of life, with deep, deep snow covering everything. Nothing but whiteness could be seen, for miles and miles of softly undulating, hilly landscape. There were no tracks in the snow. Most of all, there was no sound whatsoever. I was seeing all this not so much from inside the house, as I was seeing the completely snow-bound house set in an all-white background.

The memorable thing about the dream, the thing I wanted to go back to after I awoke, was the utter peacefulness of it. There was nothing to do, and nothing to worry about. Worry and stress was a thing of other times and other places. There was just the snow, and the quiet.

All the Freudians are now going “death wish!” But keep in mind this was in the context of me being a newspaperman. I had to go to work no matter what the weather, and go to great trouble to generate boring weather stories. Sitting tight in a warm house looking at the pretty snow was just not a part of my life.

I think maybe the dream just had to do with wanting a day off like other people. Even though I always scorned those wimps who stayed at home because it was a bit slippery outside, on some level I think I envied them. A perfectly pedestrian impulse. Although I’ll admit there was something mystical, something unearthly, about the peacefulness of that dream.

But I digress…



12 thoughts on “Another ‘Walking Dead’ kind of day in the Southland

  1. Kathryn Fenner

    Someone on Facebook said an ER nurse was killed in a weather related crash trying to get into work. Non-essential people, please be wimps and stay off the roads and let the people who really need to get somewhere have the space.

  2. Brad Warthen Post author

    Yes, this is a communitarian sort of thing. If one is not required to be out, one should stay in to reduce hazards to those who MUST be out.

    Or… should all communitarians get out and drive on the roads, thereby wearing down and melting the ice on the roads and making them safer? No, probably not. There probably aren’t enough people who’ve even heard the word “communitarian” to make a difference.

    Personally, I’d like to get out and run to Publix and buy some firewood. Publix being the only store I know of that has bothered to stay stacked with that seasonal item. Other stores that you would THINK would stock firewood have long been stocking spring items — garden soil and the like. I think the way the retail world sells stuff for NEXT season instead of what you need NOW is insane. So good for Publix.

    Of course, I don’t even know if Publix is open today. My daughter who works at Whole Foods spent the night at her sister’s house in Shandon to be close to work, but even Whole Foods is closed today…

    1. Kathryn Fenner

      Publix on Rosewood reportedly is open.

      Thing is, even if people drove on the roads, experience suggests they would not drive, or stop, as cautiously as they need to.

      If you go out, for Pete’s sake, don’t drive the pickup!

    2. Bryan Caskey

      Just got back in from splitting some bolts that I had stored. Worked up a sweat, so I don’t really need to build a fire right now.

      Interesting tidbit I picked up in Boy Scouts: you don’t chop firewood with an axe, you split wood, and you use a maul. Slightly different tool, but just right for splitting big rounds of wood into perfect pieces.

      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        I’ve got one bundle from Publix that’s safe and dry in the garage, and a bunch of old hickory in a pile out in the ice.

        I’m not starting a fire unless the power goes out. Then, I figure I can start a good, hot fire with the dry stuff from Publix, and add the wetter logs to it so they can dry out and start to burn atop the coals. At least, I think that will work.

        I have a decent supply of kindling…

  3. Norm Ivey

    I’ll gladly do my part and stay off the roads today and tomorrow. We have a cabin rented at Devil’s Fork for the weekend–that’s looking iffy.

    We’re pretty evenly covered in the northeast area, but the trees don’t have the icicles I was anticipating. I see a couple of tire tracks out there, but most seem to be staying put.

    The memorable thing about the dream, the thing I wanted to go back to after I awoke, was the utter peacefulness of it. There was nothing to do, and nothing to worry about. Worry and stress was a thing of other times and other places. There was just the snow, and the quiet.

    This is the second time recently you’ve mentioned peace and stillness. I don’t recall the context of the other one, but both took me back to last summer when we visited the Painted Desert. That may be the stillest place on earth.

    I hate snow, but love snow days. I watched some Olympics, finished reading this book about the Tillman-Gonzales affair, re-watched The Sting for the first time in several years, enjoyed a mid-day week-day beer, and now I’m fixing to start another book. I could get used to this.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      It wasn’t an “affair.” The closing of those lanes in New Jersey was an “affair” in the political sense.

      This was cold-blooded murder, committed in broad daylight, in front of a cop, by a poltroon, upon an honorable gentleman. And the poltroon got away with it.

      1. Norm Ivey

        I agree–I don’t mean to trivialize it.

        The aftermath–the trial and the machinations that resulted in the not guilty verdict is hard to believe and harder to stomach. I’ve heard the story a hundred times since I’ve been in SC, but never knew the context. The whole thing is just bizarre, and the attitudes that led to the murder (and to the miscarriage of justice) are still prevalent here.

        1. Kathryn Fenner

          There’s a strengthening movement to do something about the Tillman statue on the Statehouse grounds. I say melt it down, but others at least want a more factual sign

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