Weather Forecast


Snow shoveling is my ninja skill

So, "routine" is a word normally crammed with more negative connotations than the phrase "Trump presidency" and it's easy to understand why. Look at the synonyms for it: typical, commonplace, ordinarzzzzzzz ... I fell asleep just typing that sentence. Not exactly words associated with the smell of excitement! Like jalapeno! Or Keewatin!

I, however, have no problem with "routine." When I find something that works for me, I'm like Justin Liles with a weather clicker: I grab it and hold tight. Experimenting with new ways of doing things is a game for the young. They've got time to explore, investigate and analyze. Not that they actually do any of those things (hence the "Trump presidency"), but they could if they so chose. I, however, don't have that luxury.

I'm old. There are only so many grains of sand left in this hourglass and I'm not about to toss them out into the universe and hope they fill the cosmic pothole in my soul. I've got reruns of "Gilligan's Island" for that. My daily routines have given me tangible results. All of which brings me, in the most roundabout way possible, to shoveling snow.

I like shoveling snow. It's one of the few procedures I know how to do without consulting a manual. First, I tackle the public walkways in front of the house, followed by our single, scrabbly sidewalk that stretches a-a-a-a-l-l-l-l the way back to the garage. I know exactly which maneuvers give me maximum snow removal with minimal shovel effort. It's my Shovel Routine and if you've lived here in the Northland, you've no doubt got your pattern down as well.

Big SCOOOOOOOOP down the middle, series of tiny scoopscoopscoopscoopscoops down both sides. I could do it in my sleep. Heck, I've DONE it in my sleep.

I can't keep a secret to save my life. (Sorry again to those folks standing in line back in 1980 waiting to see "The Empire Strikes Back" as I exited the theater screaming about Luke's parental heritage.) Oil changes are best left to the greasy professionals. Our vacuum cleaner is a mythical beast. But, ladies and gentlemen, I am an expert on how to bring a shovel deposit into the local snow bank.

You have a routine that works for you and no amount of cajoling can steer you away from what you know to be true. It's proven. It's reliable. And, despite a few hardships like frozen nose hairs or chapped lips, it might even be fun to do. Believe me, for the next four years, we'll all want to grab onto as many enjoyable things as we can.

Hand over that weather clicker, Justin. I feel a massive cold front moving in ...

Brian would offer his snow shoveling services to you but then he’d have to leave the house and his car needs an oil change.

Brian Matuszak

Brian Matuszak is the founder of Rubber Chicken Theater and invites you to follow him and his theater company on Twitter at, like them on Facebook at Rubber Chicken Theater and visit their website at