I’m getting ragey about people complaining about Cincinnati drivers in the snow, so I’ve decided to give you all my response. My gut is telling me to walk away (just like it does on Facebook), but my gut is also very hungry. Onward!
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: idiot drivers aren’t partial to specific regions. They’re bad everywhere … That being said, they’re always going to exist. It’s how everyone else chooses to react to them that dictates the general feel of how “they’re” making the roads. (Holy crap, this is a microcosm of politics, isn’t it?!)
Unsurprisingly, I reside somewhere in the middle of this issue. For fun, we’ll call this “the grey area” (yes, I prefer the English spelling because it is aesthetically more appealing and my name is spelled LinsEY, so “grEY” it shall remain). Given recent events (and today’s snowy activity) I feel this post is about necessary; timely, if anything.
How this works: the words in bold are lovely proclamations from the pits of Facebook. The text that follows is my snarky response. Easy enough.
“Cincinnati weather is so bipolar!”
I’m no trained professional, but last time I checked, I’m not sure “so” falls on the spectrum of levels of bipolar disorder. We live in the midwest. All other cities in Ohio as well as in the region (see: Cleveland, Columbus, Chicago, Indianapolis, Lexington, and even cities on the east coast) experience this. This is not new. Scholars claim this has been happening for hundreds of years and you’ve been able to post it on Facebook since, like, 2004. Can someone explain to me how we are not over this yet?
“What would ever happen if Cincinnati had two inches instead of one?!”
Neither one nor two inches is a lot of snow. In fact, they’re quite comparable. Additionally, the state of poor driving doesn’t necessarily reflect the fluffy snowflakes that fall from the sky. In fact, we also experience what some experts call a “wintry mix.” This, in turn, results in ice. Ice on bridges, untreated roads (especially of the hilly persuasion), and poorly designed highways don’t typically end very well. Therefore, it isn’t always the case that snow itself (and its quantity) is to blame.
“People can’t drive in the snow.”
I’ll revisit this again. “Idiot drivers aren’t partial to specific regions. They’re bad everywhere.” Like, in every city in every state ever. For good time’s sake, let’s even remove that factor and discuss why Cincinnati reacts the way it does when it experiences inclement weather. I’ll give you one word: HILLS. I, for one, kind of appreciate that people drive more cautiously when it snows (see also: precious cargo). Maybe they’re just driving a little more slowly and you’re impatient. Have you ever thought of that? What ever happened to the saying “slowly but surely?” Maybe this truly is a You Problem. I digress. Anyway, you must also consider the time of transportation (is this during rush hour and/or are kids just being let out of school?), how furiously the snow is falling in a given time frame, the forecast (or lack thereof), and whether or not the roads have even been treated because, well, these things aren’t just a black or white issue. There are layers upon layers of issues at play here. See: The Grey Area. Ta-da!
Just imagine if every jerk was driving like they would on a normal day. We’d all be dead.
For some reason, people from out of town (either still living out of town and chiming in or transplants who’ve moved to this great city from a more “well versed snow city”) love to complain about how people in Cincinnati drive when it’s snowing. Unless said complainers are from, say, San Francisco, I’m going to go on a limb and say that they don’t quite grasp the dynamic of hills. Really hilly ones, at that.
Because we live in a place where owning a 4×4 isn’t necessary, I know I’m not buying one (someone would have to buy me that kind of gas guzzler if I’m going to be driving a 4WD vehicle that would be needed all of four days per year). Neither will most of the population. Because we choose to not own that special brand of snowmobile, our vehicles just don’t happen to run as well in this kind of snowy weather as, say, a giant 4×4 F-150 would. For four days out of the year, deal with our not owning an American Man Syndrome vehicle with truck nuts on the hitch and a wolf howling to an American flag on the back window. We deal with yours 360+.
[Disclaimer: this post is written specifically about Cincinnati, but that’s not to say that folks don’t experience this in a lot of places.]