Thursday, January 27, 2005

Semester At Crazy

Damn Coasties get all the good ones.

"I'm Tech Sgt. White. I'm here to rescue you, you, you, not you, and

Thursday, January 13, 2005

State Champs of Crazy

Ladies and Gentlemen, your 2004 Alaska State Football Champions...

The Patriots of North Pole High School.

them Elves'll Hitchee.

And by the way, the Pats are just the second non-Anchorage team to ever win State.

InFlight Emergency Crazy

an international airliner from Tokyo to Houston (and
seriously - you can KEEP that flight) diverted to Cold
Bay, Alaska
- scroll down to find it.
(and here's a Cold Bay-meets-airplane link that defies description - throwing snow into the engine?)
My favorite bit is that the locals had to ferry the
passengers to the local gyms in their own cars and the town's only two school buses.

Now...not ONLY is this the second
Tokyo-to-a-Major-US-City flight to land here in 3
years, making the state's #2 destination for
international flights...

And not ONLY could the entire population of the
town (80) fit on the plane, probably, four times

And not ONLY did most of the passengers not speak

But they landed there because Cold Bay, Alaska
evidently has a Cold War (could there be another
kind?) runway built for bombers.
Which gives the town, by my math, 125ft of runway
per resident.

I'm gonna just close the nominations right now and
declare Cold Bay the undisputed World
Runway-Length-Per-Capita Champion.

Shakin it like Crazy

Yesterday an anchorage study of it's disaster readiness concluded the city is vastly underprepared for a major earthquake. In 1964 a quake literally destroyed most of the city, the rebuilding of which Danny, Mandy and I all agree accounts for the Soviet-level of ugly achitecture that now litters the town).
They said some sections of the city could expect to be without power for a month.
That's a rather stark claim for a city that spends 4 or more months hovering around 0. But here was the part that leaped out at me: Of the 15 largest earthquakes ever recorded on the planet, 10 were in alaska.

POST-TSUNAMI UPDATE!!!! Make that 10 of the last 16.

Be Crazy To Your School

We've got snow on the caps of the mountains out the
back door this morning. We had a light coat a week or
so ago, but it was hard to take that seriously when
the temps were back up in the 60s the following day,
sending locals running for their cars to bump up the
air condition.

And that reminds me of the mid-July moment when
I stood outside an auto repair shop, up drove the
shop's shuttle van, and out hopped an old timer,
having just dropped off somebody's car. He walked
inside the store and announced, "Whew! Man, you don't
realize how hot it is outside when you've got the A/C
on until you open that door. It just hits you like a
blast." It was about 72 with a nice breeze.

So there's that.

But this time the snow looks a little more determined and
its cold enough outside to get your fingers chilly, so
I think it's got a chance to stay.

To the Crazy update:
We're closing in on the State Football Playoffs in the
football season, with only two regular season games
left. Last week, as you might have heard, local
sports factory Service High went to Montana for a
game. And got beat 86-0.

But Service isn't my favorite team. I think my
favorite high school team just became the tiny 1A
fishing village of Aniak. Aniak is one of those
native villages which is also home to year-round
population of white fishermen.

And their kids take the field under the monicker of
the Aniak Halfbreeds.

When somebody told me that last week, I flat didn't
believe them. Google it yourself, it you like.

And here's another one, as promised in this
newsletter's charter, about dog mushing. And, in this
case, how much lots of people hate it.

Ya know, all i can say on this is that these people
are fighting the wrong fight. You don't have to learn
much about dog sledding to realize it isn't cruel at
all (though it's certainly Crazy), except to any
sensable nose. From personal experience, I can tell
you that if you get yourself passed on a ski trail by
a dog team, you're in for several minutes of
unbearable stink that wind doesn't help.
And per that article, it's particularly hard to
take seriously the anti-mushing efforts of anybody in

and just for the heck of it, hockey players behaving

Crazy on DVD

Some more on the DVD marauder:

And proud to say Mandy and I spotted these a month ago on a walk back on these trails. (and don't miss the part where the guy calls Anchorage a 'metropolis')"

Crazy Fish

Originally uploaded by pjmatt05.
- Mandy and I went Halibut fishing a few weeks ago and
she caught a 70 pounder. That was good, best on our
boat. It took her 30 minutes and a week's worth of
sore arm to drag it aboard.

Not near impressive as this woman.

Quick Crazy

A few quick Crazy eruptions:

- We're keeping our elephant. Phew.
I will most DEFINITELY let you know when the
world's first elephant treadmill arrives.

With wrist-snapping force are we pushing back the
walls of legal history in the 48th state
we just tried, and acquited, the first murder case
in the entire nation where the defendent was charged
with murder for causing a fatal traffic wreck because
he was watching a DVD in his car.
A guy in Kenai - right next to Soldotna, home to the
patriotic water-thrower
- did some bad driving and
killed a couple of old people. And he did have a DVD
in his car, which COULD be viewed from the drivers
By the way, none of that, including the act of
watching TV while driving, is illegal in the 49th
So the prosecutor wrung him up for Murder.
Apparently, the DA failed to present any evidence
that he was actually watching the TV.
So he walked.
Now, i see that logic, but i kinda have to squint
because... he absolutely killed those people. Not a
contested fact.
But he killed them while NOT watching TV, so it's
not murder. hmmm....
Pay special attention to the parts about the
winking cops.

Crazy Crazy

So It's 1pm and I just woke up for the very reasonable
reason, i think, that I flew all last night on a
distinctly Alaskan rescue mission. We found our way
out towards Glenallen, for those of you who speak
Alaska-WhereAboots, at 3am.
We (where "we" = 20 members of the national guard and
two of our airplanes) were sent out there to recover
a guy who managed to crash his truck in a corner of
Alaska 400 miles from a hospital (ie, most of Alaska).
He was good and beat up - broken-ish back,
broken-for-sure-ribs, etc. Defintely got his money's
worth out of the crash. But nothing that you wouldn't
see twice a night on an ambulance in any fair-sized
But what makes for a 20 minute,
don't-bother-with-the-sirens EMS run in Charlotte, in
Alaska is literally the starting bell to call out the
National Guard.
My cell phone started hopping off the kitchen
counter at 11:40 last night. We landed back home just
after 5am.
Most fun, though, was, due to the late hour and the
late date in summer, the flight was the very first for
every single member of both crews in darkness since
April. There simply is no darkness to fly through in
Alaska during summer months until - well, until right
about last night, actually.
That made for a keystone-cops episode of medical
work in the back. If you had emptied the contents of
a hospital's dumpster into the back of our Blackhawk,
there wouldn't have been more junk (on the other hand,
if you've never stuck an IV by the light of a mini-mag
flashlight held in your teeth, then, fancy degree or
no, you don't really practice medicine. there, I said
it). But far more important, it made for a whole lot
of 'Is that the ground?'-kind of talk from the pilots
(yes, they had night vision goggles, and no, that's no
They spent most of the flight comparing it to
flying in Afghanistan, which is a little like a rock
critic comparing an album to Hall and Oates.
Our crew and our friend the bad driver arrived at
our Anchorage area hospital at 5am, give or take. He
was given a breathalizer test. The accident had
happened prior to 10pm the night before.
That's, minimum, 7 hours to dry up.
He blew a 0.08.

Doing the Crazy Chicken

Talking to a native Alaskan about the Fairbanks-area town of Fox, which led to animal-named Alaska towns, which led to the infamous Chicken (if you've missed it, a huge forest fire from the summer came to be known as the Chicken fire for its proximity to the town)

'You know why they named their town Chicken?' he asked.
'Because they got tired of not being able to spell Ptarmigan.'

Man. I hope that's true.

Even the dead are Crazy

I, like everybody else who goes up there, camped right there. My understanding is, one of my friends who is up there now was on the dig-up team.

Crazy and Reagan

I guess my sense of Alaskan history isn't what I
thought it was. But with Reagan's death, there has
been some discussion here lately of... well, let me
set the scene.
You may have heard of Fairbanks, AK. It's the
state's #2 city, sits 400 miles into the interior of
the state from Anchorage, and is renowned for it's
crushing, relentless winter cold. Temps at or below -40 are
not unusual (that's when the Air Force base there,
Eielson, shuts down) and entire months come and go
with it never getting above -20.
Fairbanks isn't the coldest spot in the state, but
only indians and oil workers live where it's any
It is also far enough north that it can claim to
have months when the sun never sets and, alternately,
never rises (here in Anchorage, the longest day of the
year is about 20 hours).
Hunting in the area is the state's best, but as you
might imagine, Fairbanks, as a city, is not much to
see. A beat up downtown, some surrounding
neighborhoods and even one or two 'bedroom communties'
that sort of qualify as suburbs (including North
But not exactly Rome.
And speaking of Rome, i hope you can all recall
where our current President was when he got The News
about The Gipper. He was in Rome, meeting with the
(and how funny was that? The Prez, mid-war, shows
up and gives the pope the "Medal of Freedom" and the
Pope promptly spends the hour yelling at him like a
grade school principle, and spends the rest of the
week doing a Triumph The Insult Dog routine on Dubya,
the war and the whole country in general. Hilarious).
So that meeting - Most Powerful Man on
Earth-meets-the Pope - took place at the Vatican,
which we can all agree, seems an appropriate setting.
I'm not sure I'd say the same about Fairbanks. But
apparently, His Holiness and The Gipper would.

Springtime for Crazy

today at work we met with our E/R doctor who is our medical controlling authority. he said he knew yesterday was the first day of spring because he treated his first motorcycle crash of the year.

and here's an update on the, pound for pound, second-craziest guy in the state, behind only the snowmobile-skiiers of the Arctic Man.

of the 13 'Muzzle' awards given out by this organization - awarded to people or organizations who have worked to violate free speech over the last year - our guy is one of only two individuals."

March Madness? Nope. Just Crazy.

Yesterday in the Alaska State basketball tournment, Barrow High took on Mt. Edgecumbe, a private school from Sitka, a small town near the state capital of Juneau. Barrow, you may have heard, is on Alaska's northern coast, and the home of the oil industry which services Prudoe Bay, North America's largest oil deposit. The sun stays below the horizon 24 hours a day for 2 months every year in Barrow. Sitka, like Juneau, sits well down the southeastern arm of the state, which runs much like a vertical panhandle down the western side of Canada, halfway to Washington.

The schools are 1,300 miles apart.

While Barrow was playing Mt Edgecumbe, 32 college teams were playing 16 games in the NCAA basketball tournment. Only 6 of those games featured teams from campuses farther apart than the two Alaska schools.
Barrow and Mt. Edgecumber are about the same distance apart as Thursday-opponents Air Force and North Carolina, Princeton and Texas, and Stanford and UTEP.
Of course, you can drive between all those schools. To get to Sitka, you must take a boat. You CAN drive to Barrow, barely, but there's really only two reasons to do so, because, as Barrow's head coach says:
'There are only two season in Barrow. Whaling season and basketball season."
And he backed it up, too: Barrow 55, Mt. Edgecumbe 47.

Can't Spell Crazy Without An E

first off, Anchorage Area Man Danny found himself at a youth (6th grade, more or less) hockey game in Palmer, which is a town (versus Anhcorage's 'city') that marks the line between 'developed' Alaska and rural Alaska, and is the one area of the state with a major farming community - though, for obvious reasons, that's a summer-only activity.
And of the 20 or so kids on the ice, he said the 4 who stood out and dominated - skated better and faster, better stick skills, just flat better hockey players - were three or four Mexican kids.
he said they even had a cheering section of family and friends who carried on strictly in Spanish.
maybe hockey-star Hispanics shouldn't surprise me - afterall, the Stanley Cup came to Anchorage last year thanks to NHL player and Anchorage-native Scotty Gomez.
But Mandy and I went to the mall yesterday with the temperature in the low 20s, and i saw more people in shorts (1) than i did Hispanics.
maybe that makes me racist, but at least i'm in good company cuz elsewhere yesterday, no less than US Senator John McCain let loose one of the most vicious, hateful, not-worthy-of-George-Wallace slurs in the English language. yip, he said the E-word.

"$200,000 for the City of North Pole, Alaska, for recreation improvements. I guess Santa had a tough year and the elves need a little help from the American taxpayer. "

Mushing I

"remember, one of the crazy-criteria was 'anything to do with dog-sledding''

Like this.

Or this.

i want to pull quotes out for you, just as a teaser, yet every paragraph is its own gem: lighters give out at -45; 'most' mushers voting to postpone because its too cold but 'also' because a guy broke his leg; touch a dog, stick your hand down pants, repeat; the guy who can't speak english; and, of course, bikini weather. matt"

Crazy, in the legal sense

been a while since I checked in with some of our local craziness, but i've been busy, climbing Mt. Crazy, AKA Denali, AKA Mt. McKinley, which has 7,000 vertical more feet of Crazy than anywhere in the other 49 states. In that sense, reaching the top is literally climbing to the pinnacle of Crazy.

I'll get around to recording the various feats and sights of lunacy soon.

on a far more somber note, here's some Crazy that even made the Drudge Report. here's a rather graphic - and very long - story about an ex-Alaskan, and former reporter for the Anchorage Daily News, and just TONS of Crazy. Unfortunately, that includes some pedophilia, so it may not be for all audiences.

Crazy Spring

It's Break Up here in the 49th state, which is how Alaskans say 'Spring.'

The term 'Break up' comes from the maritime concept of sea ice breaking up. Locally, the term means we've reached the time of year when the temps are now pretty much everyday over 40, and the streets disappear beneath the seemingly inexhaustible oceans of water produced by almost 200inches of snow melt.

But up north, on the Nanana River, there is a particular ritual of Break Up, and one more closely tied to the expression's true meaning. Just north of fairbanks, while the ice is still thick, the locals go out in the middle of the ice-clogged Nanana and plant a pole. They tie a string to the pole, and the other end of the string to a clock. When break up comes - when the ice literally begins to break up and move down stream, taking the pole with it - the string trips the clock.

The town sells shares in a betting pool to pick the exact moment - day, hour and minute - when the river trips the clock and 'breaks up.' It costs a few bucks to enter, and many people must, because the prize money is over $300,000

I don't know exactly how many people enter, but again, it must be quiet a few, because last year 66 people put down money that the Nanana River would officially 'break up' on one particular day: April 31st.

Now fire up your dayplanner and check what day of the week April 31st falls on.

Crazy Political ads

Once in texas i saw a politcal ad that was, in its entirety, the police dashboard-camera tape of the then-candidate, now-Governor trying to talk and bully his way out of a speeding ticket.
that was my favorite politcal ad, on Crazy grounds. Until now.
now, some quick background: one thing you discover quickly living in Anchorage is that if you go into a bar in the early evening, they may give you 2-for-1 on bad attitude, but never on drinks. No matter where you go, there are no drink specials in Anchorage.

so the local election for city assembly is coming up. last night, i caught this radio ad, which i've paraphrased from memory, but the key passages I'm really sure of. It was for one Dan Coffey (sounds like the beverage that sobers you up - a key point, as you'll see):

(sound of a party)
"In the 70s and 80s, Anchorage was a party town. Dance clubs stayed open all night and bars had happy hours where they gave away liquer."
"Dan Coffey helped push through laws regulating happy hours. Now bars give away buffalo wings - not shots."
(voice of Dan) "I'm Dan Coffey. I worked with area bars to end happy hours. somethingsomethingsomething."
"Paid for by Citizens for Dan Coffey. (voice of Dan) Have a cup of coffey!"

I'm No Damn Fun - Vote For Me

Crazy Wind A'Blowin'

3 days ago, my porch - and all of Anchorage - had 5 feet of snow on it. A SOLID 5 feet, built up over the last 3 months of one of the snowin'est winters on record. then came 2 days of 40-degree weather, which shouldn't dent 5-feet, but the 2nd day of which was this.

('Hillside' is, roughly, the southern half of Anchorage. 'Muldoon' is where I live)

skiers report on my porch- new snow last 24 hours: none. base: 0' conditions: slippery-to-bone dry. damndest 5-feet-of-snow disappearing act i've ever seen."

Crazy Homer

we did a water jump in Homer - that's parachuting into the ocean then getting in a boat and going into the port at Homer, which is a small fishing town that more or less lives on fishing

water temp: 34.
air temp: 28.

better to be in the water. really. Anyway, we pull into the Homer marina, which is choked but still passable with ice, and there is a long, mand-made rock jetty. just a 500 yard long pile of big rocks. and on top of every single rock along the jetty was a bald eagle. at least 50 of them. that was cool.

So after we tie up our freezing boat, surrounded by floating ice, shivering in our top-tier winter-diving gear, we pull out of the parking lot, trying to warm up and the business in the first building is:
Alaska Fish Freezing.

Well, yes - yes they are! Goodnight folks!

Crazy Stole The Ball

this one is just for the regulars... i got in the car last night to go get ice cream, turned on the radio and UAA was down by 8 with about a minute to go. by the time i got to the ice cream store... well, just read it.

Crazy Stole The Ball


Crazy takes the plunge


This was yesterday.

it was 11 degrees there. which is crazier, that, or that it was 40 degrees colder at my house?

Vote Crazy


Last night i attended an internet-organized event for
people who vaguely support the efforts of a man named
Tony Knowles to run for the US Senate.
You'll enjoy this Crazy Eruption regardless of
political slant, but to fully appreciate it, a quick
word on who Knowles is and what this campaign is
Knowles, a Democrat of the went-to-'Nam variety
(and of the Loves-Oil variety, which is the only
variety in Alaska) is probably the state's #1 local
politician - he' a two-time mayor of anchorage, a
two-time governor which he had to quit because of term
limits and just tons of nice things like parks and
trails are named after him. So many, in fact, that
until I found out about this race, i assumed he was
And he wants the Senate seat currently held by Lisa
Murkowski who, as I mentioned, was appointed to the
seat by her father. But this is much bigger than just
a 49th state deal becauce of all the US Senators
seeking re-election this year, she is among the very
weakest and Knowles certainly has the resume to beat
Much more importantly, if just one or two Ds can
beat one or two Rs this time around, the Senate will
flip back to D control and all hell will break loose
in DC, Dubya or no Dubya.
All of which makes Knowles a serious man at the
center of a very serious race.
So I and about 30 people sat around the local Pizza
place last night, called the Moose's Tooth, wondering
if Knowles was going to show up. And about the time
the pies showed up, so did Tony.
So he begins to circulate among the crowd, shaking
hands at each table for about 30 seconds and moving
on. He skipped my table, which made me, mandy and
danny very mad cuz we wanted to know what he planned
to do to clean up all the Crazy.
Instead he went to the table just past us, and
Crazy found him.
We knew something was up when he had been hovering
over the table for 10 minutes and the only voice we'd
heard was the shrill, scolding voice of one of the
women sitting there. We couldn't hear her very well,
but on and on and on she went. I looked over and Tony
- the man out to switch the balance of power in the
world's mightest government - was smiling and nodding.
And then, well into the lady's 15th minute of
ranting, our table hit a lull in conversation and
these words came floating over to us:

"...and what they need to do is put something in the
water that makes everyone sterile. Until they're
qualified to be parents" - laugh laugh laugh - "no,
they need to."

Needless to say, my head snapped up but-quick and
there was Knowles, trying to become one of the 100
most powerful men on earth, nodding and smiling like
they were talking indexing benefits to inflation and
on and on she went.

Maybe all candidates for US Senate have to suffer
the rantings of the Art Bell-set, but I just can't see
John McCain or Bill Frist putting up with it for 15
unbroken minutes. or getting it at the very first
event the campaign bothers to hold.
But I guess in Alaska, if you don't get the Crazy
Vote, you don't get any votes at all.

Taking Crazy for a wail

last week I drove over to danny's. danny lives in the
oldest, most developed neighborhood of Anchorage.
this nieghborhood borders the downtown office
district, the coast and, to its rear, the inevitable
strip of car dealerships, bad hotels and the like.
in other words, Danny's neighborhood is very nice
but is as 'urban' as Van Nuys or Tempe or Evanston or

Danny's street runs by a small park, where I like
to play fetch with my dog, but that would have been
tough with the 5 feet of snow covering it. But, as i
thought that, i noticed somebody out walking their dog
on the sidewalk. or rather, i noticed somebody out
walking something by a leash.
but as i drove by and got a better look, i realized
it was somebody out walking thier reindeer.


Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Crazy Manifesto (is there another kind?)

I didn't like 'As Good As It Gets,' but Jack Nickolson
throws out a line in it that Mandy, Danny and I have
adopted as our unofficial motto here in the 49th
Sell Crazy Someplace Else; We're Full-Up Here

Indeed we are, and since this is 1/50th of your country up here (1/3rd if we're speaking geographically), I think the world needs to know how stark-raving Crazy everybody is here. I've lived here only since April, '03 and here's a short list of what i've come across:
- with no sales or income tax, pays every resident
over $1000 a year. Period. Sign up, here's your
check, enjoy the snow.
- that said, you will NEVER meet a population more
militantly anti-government than Alaskans.
- Dec 21st has about 4 hours of sunlight and Jun 21st
has more than 20, and that's just in
relatively-southern Anchorage - farther north (and the
state is as north-south tall as the lower 48) they go
months when the sun never crosses the horizon, either
above or below.
- You can't drive from the biggest, only city
(Anchorage) to the state capital (Juneau) without a
500-mile detour through Canada. Out of the 20 biggest
towns/cities, I'd guess a solid 7 of them you can't
drive to at all.
- Every year, they play the Nation's First High School
Football game (in July) and the state title game is in
- From Anchorage, you can regularly see Mt. McKinley,
the tallest mountain this side of the Himilayas,
which, distance-wise is the equivelant of standing on
the Santa Monica pier and seeing the Golden Gate
bridge, or going up in the Washington Monument and
seeing boston.
- with caveats for distribution-sized stashes, it is
illegal for cops to arrest in you in your house for
pot. the state supreme court has said so.
- and then there's the politics, and in case you don't
know the most recent chapter: AK had 2 of the longest
serving US Senators in history, Ted Stevens, who's
still there, and Frank Murkowski. Murkowski ran for
Governor in 02 and won, which means he had to quit his
job as Senator. Since the US Constitution says state
Govs get to pick Senators when there's an opening, the
AK Legislature passed a bill saying that no new
Senator could be appointed until at least 5 days after
the old one quit - just enough time for Murkowski to
quit and be sworn in and, therefore, pick his own
successor (in fact, the lame duck-gov vetoed that
bill, and the leg over-rode him - hell of a fight).
So murkowski came in and appointed to fill his
still-warm US Senate seat...
His Daughter.

And that's just the big-picture, government and
geography stuff. living here everyday you meet an
endless stream of the normal people who actually
aren't normal at all but are walking microcosms of all
the insanity i just listed above.

Why, just hours ago, i took my dog for some cross
country skiing on some local trails, and we were
nearly run over by a dogsled... four times.
Also on dogsledding, the chaplain at Kulis Air
Force Base races dogs - so he has a dog kennel on his
truck, the windows of which are crosses.
dogsledding, i pro'ly need not say, is ESPECIALLY

so I'm going to pass along, in MUCH smaller emails, a
running tally of the ridiculous events that fit one of
a couple categories.
- it could not possibly, under any circumstances, happen anywhere but here (an example might be getting
a ticket for driving without lights on at 10:00 am
since the sun still isn't up at that time this month -
i made that up, but barely)
- would seem odd elsewhere but hits you with
shattering unexpectedness since it happened in Alaska
(see my anecdote below for an example)

- straight links to stories in the anchorage daily
news which - as the paper of record for a state of
insanity - nearly every day produces the driest,
craziest headlines and stories this side of the Onion.

- it's just flat insane (say, the murkowski-daughter
thing, for example, or yesterday when the osteopathic
surgeon who stole a taxi on the way to a strip club
and, oh, nevermind, here's the link - they even have
'bizarre' in the headline.
- any personal contact with dogsledding.

You may be thinking that California - and certainly Florida
- has plenty of crazy, why concentrate on Alaska?
Well, keep in mind: There's about 600,000 people in
the whole state (including natives who ARE NOT Eskimos
- I don't think i've even heard that word uttered here
since my arrival). There's only one city, and its got
half of that population. We don't have an LA-basin
worth of crazy-resources. We're just astonishingly
efficient with what we have.

today, as the inaugural post, you get two examples,
an anecdote and a straight link.

First, the link:
I'm sure the bacon-grease industry is mobilizing its

and the anecdote: my friend Ben went to turn in his
Toyota pick-up for service at the Toyota dealership.
Non-descript, cinder-block and glass, slightly shabby
Toyota dealer along the main highway drag.
Who am i gonna call for a ride? he thinks.
Don't worry about it, says the dealer guy. We got a
shuttle service to take you back to work.
Great! he says. And right outside is a simple,
dull minivan with 'shuttle' on it.
That's not it, says the guy. we're calling the
service right now.
Oh, says Ben, and waits.
And up pulls... a black, stretch limo.
At a ratty Toyota dealer, in alaska.
So when he got back to work, everyface in the house
was pressed up against the window as the black stretch
rolled to a stop, the door opened and out jumped...
And yip - it had snow tires.

as the guy in the taxi story said: 'Geez, this is