Brush It Off

For many people who live in a state that experiences winter—and I don’t mean 50 degrees one day out of the year, California friends—snow is inevitable.

That means that for those of us who don’t keep their vehicle in a covered garage because the weirdos that built their house 60 years ago failed to equip the garage door with the tools to be automatic, scraping the ice and snow off said vehicle is pretty much a regular thing.


It’s also almost a science.

I have a remote car starter that I can activate from the warmth of my house, but it’s an automatic car starter—not an automatic “scrape all the crap off your entire snow-covered vehicle including the roof and the back end”-type thing.

There’s still quite a bit of work to be done.

  • Hit the starter so the defroster can begin its work.
  • Dress as warmly as possible with coat, hat and gloves. Take off my gloves when I remember I can’t tie my boots with big gloves on.
  • Gloves off, I tie my boots and make sure to tuck my pants into my socks so I don’t a) lose my sock when I take off my boots and b) get snow stuck in my boot.
  • Put gloves back on. Struggle to unlock and open the door.
  • Take gloves off, open door, head outside and put gloves back on.
  • Get distracted and shovel the walkway.
  • Grab snow brush out of my car.
  • Brush the burst of snow off the driver’s seat that falls in upon opening the door. Every. Single. Time.
  • Start with brushing the snow off the roof.
  • Curse the wind that is blowing the snow directly back into my face and continue to brush what I can reach, leaving an icy unreachable island in the middle of the roof.
  • Move on to the side and back windows. Feel proud that I remembered to brush off the lights and my license plate, both caked with ice.
  • Prepare plan of attack for the windshield. Sometimes there’s only a dusting of ice that the defroster can tackle alone. However, some mornings the ice is so thick that I need the strength of a roided up rhino to scrap that stuff off.
  • While strategizing, a large gust of wind will blow through.
  • Notice that half of the snow from the hood of my car is now lodged between my sock and my boot.
  • Wonder why I’m living in such a frigid climate, how the bastard groundhog keeps his job and yell at the garage as it mocks me.
  • Take rage out on scraping off ice.
  • Scrape, scrape, scrape…still scraping.
  • Lift up frozen windshield wipers.
  • Scrape, curse, scrape, curse, scrape…still scraping, still cursing.
  • Realize the defroster is starting to kick in and actually helping me out.
  • Quit cursing.
  • Get hit in the face with the snow from the roof that I couldn’t reach with the brush.
  • Resume cursing.
  • Decide it’s “clean enough” and walk back towards the house.
  • Shovel the walkway again before struggling to unlock and open the door.
  • Take gloves off, open door, head inside and take off boots.
  • Build small igloo out of snow that’s removed from my boot.
  • Show cat small igloo made from snow that’s removed from my boot.
  • Clean up bloody scratches on my arms from less-than-thrilled cat.
  • Decide it’s not worth leaving home.
  • Turn off car.
  • Make tea.
  • Spike tea.
  • Count down the days until spring.

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22 responses to “Brush It Off

  1. That is exactly how it goes. I have to say that not owning a car has its perks when it comes to things of this nature. Then again, walking to work in the snow isn’t amazing either…

  2. tomuseornottomuse

    As a transplanted New Yorker who’s been in CA 38 years, I actually re-experienced every bullet point as I read it. Then congratulated myself on being smart enough to get the hell out of there when I had the chance!

  3. I’m with you! Winter sucks!

  4. Winter begone! I wish you (and me) a speedy Spring.

  5. Love it! You brought back memories (that I had so carefully tucked into the dark crevices of my mind) from my days of single-girl-with-an-apartment-and-no-garage life in Kansas City!

  6. If I could figure out how to do it and earn a living I would never ever leave my house again as long as the white stuff was around.

  7. It was about 75 degrees today in SoCal. Happy Valentine’s Day. Meow!

  8. Hah! Sorry! Thanks for reminding me why I live in Texas, even though our Governor is an ass-hat. 🙂

  9. Not all bad then !! I’m still amazed that you can start your car from inside the house.

  10. I think you’re on to something with the automaticcar starter/wipe all the crap off your car thingy… get inventin’!

  11. Ugh. Yes, that’s about right. Sometimes I’m lucky and my husband cleans off my car for me before I wake up. Maybe because he was the genius who once asked me, “What do you want a garage for?”

  12. By the time I get half way through that list, my hands have frozen along with the tiny tears dropping down the side of my face.

  13. I live in the south for many reasons, one is, in Georgia, we don’t get much snow or ice. When we do, it’s like the zombie apocalypse. My boss lives in Lansing, Michigan. I’ve been there twice, during thr spring and summer. I would love to catch a Tigers game with you but we have to keep our distance during the winter. No snow for this joe.

  14. I feel you, and I hate every bit of it. But for some reason, I’ve always hated the snow that falls into the car when you open the door most. Like you needed the seat of your pants to be wet when you get where you’re going, on top of everything else.

  15. Man, I am SUPER jealous. Everyone, every where, is getting snow. I’ve had a lousy 6 inches all season. I want ONE good blizzard, dammit.

    But I do feel for you. You’ve been hammered this year!

    • I would take only one good blizzard, but I’m SO over my scary morning commute that takes forever, shoveling at 6am just to get out of my house and, well, winter. If I didn’t have to go anywhere, it would be fine 😉

  16. themodernidiot

    “Get distracted and shovel the walkway.” HAHA Exactly! Greetings from Iowa. Best itemization ever 🙂

  17. Omg the worst is when your socks come off when you take your boots off.

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