Thursday, January 31, 2008

Red-handed

The forecast is brutal for the next couple of days. We’re supposed to have something like 9-12 inches of snow by tomorrow afternoon. As the snow began to fall around 2pm today, I finally made a snap decision to make a quick run to the grocery store and stock up on supplies before the storm hit. It felt weird going to the store in the middle of a weekday, and as I drove by S.L.’s street, I had a brief wave of paranoia: what if he was working from home and happened to see me go by in my car? He’d think I was irreverently blowing off my dissertation. But I rested assured that there was really no way he’d have been able to see my car from that angle, so I proceeded onward.

Apparently everyone in Urbana also had the same idea to go to Schnucks before the storm got any worse. And the already sub-par driving skills of people in this town plummet even farther when they are in a parking lot rapidly filling in with snow. I pulled into a place and as I was getting out of my car, somebody pulled in right next to me. That looks like S.L’s wife I noted, thinking that I must just be over-paranoid. I rushed into the store, picked up a cart, and zoomed over to the produce. As I was selecting some broccoli, my suspicions were confirmed. It was S.L.’s wife for sure, and she was walking my way. Oh God, I thought, considering for a nano-second that maybe she wouldn’t recognize me. But it was too late, she was already smiling and saying “Hi, Melissa!” I’d been caught red-handed. I’m sure there’s no chance that she’ll forget to mention to S.L. that she saw me at the grocery store today, in the middle of the day, when I should have been doing something productive. I’m in for it.

I tried to comfort myself with the reminder that this is a safety issue… it would have been foolhardy to put off grocery shopping until after the storm hit. Plus it is a health issue. Without a ready supply of fresh leafy green vegetables, I am liable to lose my super-human powers of disease-resistance, and that would surely prolong my dissertation even more. I’ll be ready with these counter-arguments when I see S.L. tomorrow.

That is, if I see him tomorrow. Some campus events are already canceling, and the facilities and services has already issued a statement of caution—warning that even though they will be working at full capacity to clear roads, sidewalks, bike lanes, and parking lots, the sheer volume of snow we are expecting will likely slow them down.

But no matter what, Anth 241 will go on. I’ve got my lecture ready and my snow tires on Iris II, so come what may. Thanks for reading, I've got to get back to work now.

3 comments:

nancy said...

HOW IRONIC WAS THAT??????? Hard to believe you and MRS SL would pick the same time to SHOP!!!!!! You have a right to GET groceries, at ANY time of the day , so I wouldn't let it bother me!!! Haven't you heard>>> your mama has called the HEAD DAWG, and CANCELLED ANTH241, FOR TOMORROW!!!!!!!!! so just stay INSIDE and EAT YOUR GREENS!!!!! IF cars can't get through, how can IRIS 2 EVEN CONSIDER IT? Take care, luv you,

Anonymous said...

THE IQ OF UOFI IS AT STAKE -- DO NOT RIDE A BICYCLE ANYWHERE IF THERE IS 9-12 INCHES OF SNOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
guess who?????? yes, it's your opinionated auntie!!!

amypfan said...

I say you're allowed to go to the grocery store any time you want. Stay warm!