Seeing as my school district has a two hour delay (NOTE: As opposed to having the whole day off, I still get paid, instructional periods are shorter, and there's no obnoxious "activity" period at the end of the day. There's no downside to a 2 hour delay.), I thought I'd take this opportunity to finish my "Snow Day" observations. Stay warm. I know I will.
Following a mutually agreed-upon snowball fight armistice, many opt to make a snowman. Especially for the older ones, the garden variety “Frosty the Snowman” figure just won’t do. Standing four feet tall, with a corn cob pipe and a button nose seems pretty blasé to pre-teens.
Therefore, most sixth-graders attempt to create the King Kong of snowmen. Being seen from the street isn’t good enough for them. No, no, they want their creations visible from orbit.
Starting with a small snowball, sometimes up to five boys will begin rolling the “Mutant Frosty’s” base. Adopting a meandering stroll across the yard, they gather freshly-fallen snow into an ever-growing ball. Their muscles strain as the base finally morphs into a huge boulder.
Once the base reaches chest-high, they repeat the entire process for the mid-section. Not so large as the base, the master builders are soon disappointed to discover it’s now so heavy that hoisting it into position is impossible without heavy machinery.
Shrugging their shoulders in exasperated resignation, they consider all their work for naught. At this point, though, the twisted genius among them comes up with a brainstorm. How about building him, he suggests with a devilish smile, so that he’s lying on his back?
Reenergized, the snowy craftsmen place the mid-section next to the base before continuing on to roll together their creation’s head. Scrounging two dead branches from the woodpile, they jam them into the snowman’s side and position a collection of black rocks on its “face” so that it resembles a blissfully passed-out bar fly.
Finishing off with an old baseball cap atop its head and an empty can of Budweiser casually tossed next to its right branchy hand, the sculptors step back to proudly admire their masterpiece.
As they all pat themselves on the back and exchange cheerful high-fives, the original designer peers intently at what they had wrought. He glares at their impressionistic rendering of the frostbitten inebriated and rubs his chin in deep thought. Circling the snowy lump, he solemnly pronounces, “Something isn’t right.”
He continues to ponder and evaluate what may be missing, if anything. The prepubescent artist scratches his head through his wool cap when, suddenly, he snaps his fingers and disappears into the house, leaving his fellow artists puzzled. What’s the problem, they wonder, seeing nothing wrong.
Minutes later, the budding Michelangelo dashes back into the yard, a giant carrot from the refrigerator in his hand.
Seeing what he held, each member of the team immediately realizes what was missing. They enthusiastically approve as their friend affixes the bright orange tuber to the giant sprawled in the backyard.
Done with their labors, they look for other things to do. The girls looked like they were having fun. But, as they get closer, they decide that lying flat on their backs and waving their arms and legs to make ridiculous snow angels seemed lame. Better to head inside to slurp gallons of steaming hot Swiss Miss cocoa in front of a SpongeBob Squarepants cartoon.
Several hours later, as their father wearily turns into a driveway which had become a frozen landscape from another world, he notices something odd. What were those lumps of snow?
Coming to the end of the driveway, his headlights clearly illuminate the strange shape in his yard, positioned next to the remains of two snow forts. It looked like someone had gone to a lot of trouble to build-and knock over-a snowman.
He shuts off the engine and gingerly steps over the ice to the edge of the driveway. With a shake of his head and a wry smirk, he finally realizes what it is:
An anatomically correct snowman lying on its back.