Wednesday, February 10th, 2010
69

How to Shovel Fucking Snow

SHOVELINGThere has been a lot of talk of snow on this blog of late. And while I know most New Yorkers don't shovel a flake of snow, many in D.C. and other locales own are underwater on condos, houses and town-homes. Also, maybe some newly underemployed i-banker is now the super of your building and needs to know how to shovel fucking snow. Anyway, knowing how to shovel snow is a useful skill. I have shoveled literal shit-tons of snow in my life so here's how.

First, chug a fucking glass of red wine.

Put on a hat and gloves. Next, throw on a light jacket. Not too heavy moron; you're going to get sweaty. Also, it's gotta be loose so nothing you bought at H&M. Armani? ARE YOU EVEN LISTENING TO ME? Next slam your feet into your boots. No, WITH PURPOSE. What, you don't have boots?! (Rolls eyes). Okay, put on your Aldo dress shoes and put each foot into a few tall plastic bags, doubling or tripling up. Duct tape those fuckers on around your calves. You do have calves, don't you? Yell to nobody in the house in particular, "I'm going out to shovel!"

Get your shovel.

You have one of those bent "ergonomic" shovels? (Sigh.) Fine. A plastic thing from Target? I suppose. Real shoveling is always and only done with aircraft-grade aluminum.

Open the door but do not step outside yet. Stepping on the snow just packs it onto the step and makes clearing it harder. Shovel the top step snow onto the second step. Shovel first and second step snow down onto the third. Repeat until you're on a cleared spot on the landing. Turn around. Now scrape all the top step snow down to the second. Then to the third. Continue until all snow from the steps is on the landing then shovel that off to the side.

Go inside and chug another a fucking glass of red wine.

Now, starting on one side of the walk, take your shovel and drive that bastard low and straight into the heart of the drift. Getting the absolute maximum amount of snow on your shovel, lift it up and toss it to the side. Groan if you must. Better yet curse that fucking snow. "Fuck you, you motherfucking shitty snow!" Get angry, damn it!

Repeat this all the way down one side of the walk until your back is so tight it is absolutely killing you to stand up straight. Then go inside and chug another fucking glass of red wine. What? You're taking off your boots to get the wine? Fuck that. Traipse that fucking snow through the living room all over the wood floor.

Got your shovel? Starting in the middle of the walk now, and facing, perpendicular to the still-snow-covered strip of the walk, slide the shovel beneath all the rest of the snow to the edge of the walk, lift it up and toss it. Each try should completely clear one shovel-width of the walk. Continue this way until your tightening back pain moves from the lower back to where your back muscles meet your scrotum. Congratulations. That, my good man, is a hernia.

Now, hobble back to where you started in the middle of the walk and, facing, perpendicular to the strip again but AWAY from the snow-covered side of the walk, slide the shovel behind you beneath all the rest of the snow to the edge of the walk, lift it up like lifting a suitcase and toss it backwards. Do this until your triceps and shoulder sear. Toggle between these forward and backward methods until the walk is clean.

Don't put any salt on that shit, you fuck-up! You know how bad that is for dogs?

Now, go inside and finish the bottle of red (though really it should be gone as bottles contain exactly three glasses of wine) and cook yourself a fucking steak.



Abe Sauer knows how to shovel snow.

69 Comments / Post A Comment

Ronit (#1,557)

I have never had to shovel a flake of snow in my entire life (and I've lived in the Northeast for many years). Yay me.

Vulpes (#946)

I hate you.

Kevin (#2,559)

What are you? A blonde girl?

Maevemealone (#968)

Midwest blondes learn how to shovel shortly after learning to crawl.

Ronit (#1,557)

Moved to the Northeast for college and then NYC. Living in a dorm and then an apartment means no shoveling!

zidaane (#373)

That or put a car in the bush driving backward out a snowy drive.

Rw (#1,458)

So you don't own a house then? maybe one day you will when you get older.

YoWheez (#3,516)

Actually, we learn how to drive the John Deere first. Way more efficient.

Cat litter works as well as salt, doesn't harm doggy feet, works at lower temperatures, and pisses the hell out of cat haters. OK by me.

mathnet (#27)

I haven't tried this stuff yet (have to wait until my bag of corrosive salt is kicked!), but I think it looks good? http://www.magicsalt.info/Magic%20Salt.htm

Milan Bozic (#3,443)

You're forgetting a smoke before and after the shoveling. Make sure to toss that shit on top of the biggest pile.

And the most expensive car on the block.

Rod T (#33)

Don't you have people for that? Savage!

Bittersweet (#765)

Is a shit-ton closer to a metric ton or an English ton?

wiilliiaamm (#225)

And after you finish…dont blame my ass when the goddam plow truck comes by and fucks your shit up again. Just open another bottle and get back to work you moron.

Abe Sauer (#148)

MOTHERFUCKINGSNOWPLOWGUYSDOTHATSHITONPURPORSE!!!

Matt (#26)

OHMYGODDAMNTHEYSOMOTHERFUCKINGDOTHATSHITONPURPOSEMYGOD

Please don't take out my mailbox!

zack petrick (#1,335)

just give the plow guy a few beer (a reach around if need be) and he will keep your shit clear!

HiredGoons (#603)

IloveitwhenZackPstopsby!!!

bb (#295)

related question- at what point is it ok to just give up on your car as the hardened crust from plows builds up?

Abe Sauer (#148)

What's the car worth? Cause you'd need to get the plates off and grind off the VIN. I can show you how to do this but it might be easier to dump six bags of salt all over the fucker and then just drive the frightening rust-bucket around until it eats the breaks.

Abe Sauer (#148)

Brakes.

ae38 (#1,097)

1) Wait for enterprising youth's in your neighborhood to knock on your door
2) Agree on a price for the driveway plus removing snow from cars
3) Turn on the TV and kick-back
4) Wait for second knock on door to let you know they are finish
5) Inspect, pay up, offer some cocoa if you have it

Tuna Surprise (#573)

There's no more "enterprising youth" in America's neighborhoods anymore.

Dave Bry (#422)

1) Hear knock on door.
2) Peek through blinds in window next to door to see who it is.
3) See that it is youths.
4) Call police.

wiilliiaamm (#225)

My parole officer told me that I am not allowed any contact with "enterprising youths".

No worries–we've got all those seniors living on a fixed income and looking for p/t work to choose from.

EvilMonkey (#1,063)

Shoveling snow is for pussies. Put on the boots or whatever, take the wine with. Go out and stomp that shit down as hard as you can, over and over, walking back and forth, show that shit who's boss, drink, swear, yeah that works too. Got a car and a driveway? You lucky bastard. Start that baby and jack the heat all the way up. Let it run for about an hour until the heat has melted all the snow off the roof and windows; finish the wine and watch some TV while you wait. Get in. Drive back and forth, over and over like before, only this time move over one tire width every once in a while until you have compacted the snow on both sides to make it easier getting in and out. Done and done. Now that fucking snow knows the wrath of the master.

You laugh, but that's how I deal with the piles the plow makes at the end of my driveway, by fishtailing all over it with the car.

EvilMonkey (#1,063)

Here in Alaska it snows for six to nine months. You either make the snow your bitch, or become the snow's bitch.

mathnet (#27)

Exactly!

Vulpes (#946)

I'm having shrimp and a Coke after my shit-ton of snow, because I'm hardcore like that.

Just asking, but what about gasoline and a blow torch? I mean why WAIT for it to melt?

WindowSeat (#180)

Drink a double espresso, dress in layers with winter boots, NOT Uggs you fuck and push the fucking snow away from the garage door (with a motherfucking aluminium shovel) about six feet.

Turn the choke all the way to the left on your goddamn snowthrower and punch the primer about ten times then yank the starter like you want to yank the guts out of your neighbor who parks on the street making the fucking Township Plow slow down and leave a three foot berm of snow in front of the driveway.

Start in the middle of the driveway and go all the way to the middle of the street and turn around and plow a strip half as wide as the snowthrower's opening. Do this in an ever widening, continuous track and DO NOT stop to chat with the fucking neighbors or you will end up helping them and they just have shitty plastic shovels.

Bomb the driveway with a salt and calcium chloride mixture because the dog's electronic fence excludes it from the driveway and she's off in back killing voles like she's fucking supposed to be.

Repeat in four hours because it's still snowing.

HiredGoons (#603)

Also, you should piss on the piles to keep kids off your damn lawn.

Alex Pareene (#278)

Shovel the step before you walk outside? You keep your shovel in the house??? Do you live in the fucking GARAGE?!

Abe Sauer (#148)

That shit should be on the porch or BEST OF ALL in the basement leaning up against the furnace so that it is nice and toasty hot and will go through even icy-snow LIKE BUTTER.

zidaane (#373)

I like the part where you walk through the house trailing snow debri. "I'm shoveling here people".
It has that implied warning to housemates, "I expect something when I'm done- you lazy fucks". I never got this…

Four different implements, at least:

standard snow shovel – as wide as possible and, yes, the ergonomic kind – the main issue with snow shoveling is your back and the occasional muscle pull from throwing the snow. You just walk along and push the snow, no bending or scraping. Plastic is fine, but it's better if it has a metal lip at the bottom so that, several days after you've put down salt, you can easily break up and plow away the ice.

grain shovel – for breaking up chunks of snow, plowing heavy snow and throwing snow great distances.

garden shovel – with the sharp pointy end, for breaking up piles of snow, hard-packed snow and snow/ice combos

ice scraper – for lifting the ice from the ground several days after putting down salt; work it at an angle and just slide, slide, slide. You can also chop in a straight motion perpendicular to the ground but this is not recommended, due to the impact on your back. Once the ice has been broken up, use the snow shovel to move it off the driveway.

rj77 (#210)

Also useful: A Swiffer (sans cleaning cloth) to get the snow off the top of the car.

CLEAN OFF THE TOP YOUR CARS, ASSHOLES. DO NOT LET THAT SHIT FLY BACK ON MY WINDSHIELD. I DID MY PART.

MattP (#475)

Are you fucking shitting me? You need one shovel and it's not ergonomic and it damn sure isn't Alu-Fucking-Minium. A heavy as fuck steel coal shovel is what men use to clear snow. When you're done and your whole body hurts you know you've earned the post shoveling whiskey. Fuck!

puns-n-roses (#9,819)

Oh man. I have way too many terrible memories of that Ice scraper growing up in New England. The one that looks like a flattened-out hoe? And…I mean like the gardening implement, not…nevermind.

Anyway, my parents are still there, sitting under 80" of snow. Fools.

Actually I miss New England, but that's not the point.

HiredGoons (#603)

How to Shovel Fucking Snow:

Make Your God Damned Brat Kids Do It.

Kevin (#2,559)

Make them earn their keep! Fucking freeloaders.

deepomega (#1,720)

UGH. I was that brat kid and shoveled the sidewalk from front door to two cars, then cleared the cars, from middle school till… Well, till I moved 3000 miles away from the snow. UGH.

Addendum; In lieu of wine, drink whiskey. It keeps you warmer-feeling and triples your resolve to fuck that goddamn snow up.

the teeth (#380)

Well, it's not either/or. Whiskey (or whisky, if that's more your taste) is the outdoor beverage … but if you want to head indoors for wine breaks, I can't imagine it hurts.

(Also, a bottle of wine holds 3.5 glasses, or maybe 2 proper glasses and one slightly-excessive one. Quibbling, maybe?)

A wine bottle does indeed hold 3 glassfuls in the Midwest. The sucky thing about LA is that same bottle holds about 10 glassfuls. However, no snow.

Also it really helps with the shoveling if it's not the first time you've done any physical activity since that one softball game summer. Cause you are going to need a lot more than wine in a day or two.

Abe Sauer (#148)

10?! What a shithole.

BoHan (#29)

Global warming can't come soon enough. This snow thing sounds yucky.

Mary HK Choi (#1,469)

MAHAHAHAHAHA. Anyone shoveling snow WOULD BE wearing Aldo dress shoes… ALDO?!!! BAAHAHAHAHAHHAHA… Aldo… ALDO!

berthamason (#740)

Wait, what is wrong with Aldo shoes? Teach me, Mary HK Choi! I learned everything I know about fashion from you!

rj77 (#210)

Personally, I prefer hot chocolate spiked with butterscotch schnapps. Red wine's too dry.

KarenUhOh (#19)

I read this instead of shoveling. I do my best shoveling here, anyhow.

Moff (#28)

I kinda like my ergonomic shovel, actually, although I like my dad's ergonomic shovel better.

QUESTION OUR CRED; I DARE YOU.

SaltTooth (#915)

I like YOUR MOM's ergonomic shovel.

mathnet (#27)

SNOWPLOW-EY SHOVELS ARE AWESOME EXCEPT WHEN THERE'S 2 1/2 FEET OF SNOW TO 'JUST PUSH OUT OF YER WAY'

Those things are h e a v y and my body hurts–that is why.

cherrispryte (#444)

The only thing plowed/shoveled as far as I can see is the parking lot for the German Historical Institute. WTF, Deutscheland?

Vulpes (#946)

It's that German efficiency. They probably had an orderly rota of young interns shoveling at all times while a black leather-clad blond man shouted "Schell! Schnell!"

True store: I once had a soccer coach, when I was six, who would sprint up and down the sidelines yelling that, which, on more than one occasion, terrified opposing team members into running to their mommies and daddies on the opposing sideline.

Pop Socket (#187)

Do NOT knock the scoop-blade bent-handle shovel. I moved two tons of 30" deep snow over the weekend and am looking at another 20" for tomorrow and my back feels great.

But I do heartily endorse the red wine every sixty minutes. It gives you a break and keeps you from keeling over with over-doer's heart attack.

zack petrick (#1,335)

its great, but you left out the part where its FUCKING COLD! The wind gives you rug burn that even astro glide couldnt prevent!

mathnet (#27)

Zack P!

HiredGoons (#603)

Iknowright!?

zack petrick (#1,335)

Oh I have been here all along, I just like to lurk.

mathnet (#27)

I kind of have a problem with the fact that you're calling this Op/Ed. IT IS FACT.

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