Here we go again.
Blizzard of ‘77. The infamous grab a six pack of ‘85. October Surprise in ’06.
Now we have the Snovember to Remember in 2014.
Each of these weather events are every bit as serious as they sound. They demand the attention of government support and national media. They’re damaging to property, city and town budgets, and our image. And not to forget, they can be life threatening.
These are the storms that everyone around the globe hears about and the images of such storms pop into their heads whenever the name Buffalo is mentioned – no matter the time, place or setting. We’re forever associated with snow based on a handful of “big ones”.
So what, right? Yes and no.
As a marketer, it’s a PR nightmare for our region. No matter how hard we try, changing people’s overall perceptions will be a continual challenge. Despite snow events like these ranking far behind catastrophes most other places commonly see (you know, earthquakes, hurricanes, tornados, tsunamis, wildfires, droughts), for some reason, snow seems to stick in people’s minds the way it does to our rooftops and car windshields.
As a lifelong resident, it can be infuriating. Our opportunities to make the national spotlight are limited; it’d be so much better if we had the chance to fill those timeslots with the billion other great things going on here.
Nobody likes to be constantly reminded of tough times.
I can’t think of anything worse than vacationing somewhere and telling people I’m from Buffalo, only to hear the “is it snowing?” comment. In June.
It’s funny how weather gives people and places a certain stigma if it’s perceived to be always bad and a blatant arrogance if it’s thought to be good.
So where am I going with all of this?
As we dig out of this latest blast, and continue to be the focal point for all of the bad weather that the Northeast ever gets, I urge everyone to think about a few things.
Embrace it. If you’re not in danger, have some fun! How many other natural disasters let you go out and play games in the wake of the storm? Or better yet, enjoy the quality time with your family and favorite alcohol next to a fire.
Be part of the positive story. When the sky gives you slush, make a slushy? You get my point. There’s a good way to handle dealing with things, and there’s the way that adds insult to injury. Give a follow to Visit Buffalo Niagara, which is taking every step possible to see the creative and positive side of the weather, and join in on the fun.
Help someone. We NoBo’s have escaped relatively unscathed here. Take the time, once the roads open up and it’s safe to do so, to help out friends and family that may need a push or hand shoveling or a beer.
And most importantly, remember that all in all, we have it really good. We have four beautiful seasons of weather. OK, three and a half. But still, it’s pretty awesome. And really what it comes down to is we’re surrounded by genuine people, and their best shines through in moments like these.
Where else would you rather be, than right here, right now? Hawaii? Maybe. But I’m just fine in the 716.