Sunday, March 03, 2019

The Good Old (Snow) Days

Sure, I sometimes give Mayor Bill de Blasio a hard time. I mean, he left all those fanatical ideologues Bloomberg hired in place, and my job is just that much more difficult. He's done nothing to hold back all those insane lunatics Bloomberg's Leadership Academy trained in the art of insane lunacy. I'm still teaching in a half-room, my colleagues are in trailers and closets, and he doesn't give a golly gosh darn about class sizes.

This notwithstanding, he's been pretty good about snow days. It's nice to have a mayor who wants fewer of us to get injured or die on the road.

Do you remember waiting until 5 AM to find out whether or not school was open? Joel Klein would sit around, reading the tea leaves (or doing whatever it is predatory birds do to pass the time) and wait until the last possible moment to let a million kids and a hundred thousand UFT members whether or not they had to dig out and come in.

De Blasio is having none of that. It looks like there's gonna be a crapload of snow, so schools are closed. Not only that, but he tells you the day before. One day, after de Blasio visited the UFT Delegate Assembly if I'm not mistaken, Norm Scott and I took off to Luke's Lobster over on South William Street. Norm was drinking beer, but I had to go to work the next day and abstained. My District Rep sent me a text that school was closed, and all of a sudden we were both drinking beer. It was a great moment.

Before the announcement, I was playing around with friends on Facebook, saying maybe tomorrow would be a snow day. It seemed to good to be true. But I learned on Twitter from the chancellor that this was really a thing:


Shortly thereafter, I stumbled upon the above UFT graphic, which I texted to every one of my colleagues whose phone number I happened to have, and then realized it made more sense to just email it to everyone on staff. I may be slow, but eventually I catch on. It's nice to be the bearer of glad tidings, something that happens all too rarely. I'm pretty happy. I'd almost certainly have gone in. Every snow day I think about staying home, but I don't think I ever have.

I remember, when Rudy Giuliani was mayor, driving up the Long Island Expressway, listening to him saying, "It's really dangerous out there. If you don't have to come in to work, stay home." I'm certain I posted that message on the board for the five or six students who were as crazy as I am, showing up that day.

New York is known for being ridiculous on snow days. My mother told me that once, when she was a little girl in Brooklyn, there was an incredible snowstorm and her parents sent her to school. The teacher was there, but she was the only kid whose parents made her go. The teacher sent her home. (I wonder whether the teacher went home.)

I wish you all a healthy, warm and joyous snow day! No one deserves it more than you.
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