Because of all the rain we’ve had recently, the Vancouver area has been under a “boil your tap water” advisory for a while now and while the situation is improving and the advisory is expected to lift in a few days, people were going nuts - there were fights over bottled water, people were complaining about not being able to bathe their children because it would take too long to boil a tub of water, and coffee shops stopped serving coffee because their machines had water piped into them and it couldn’t be boiled ahead of time.

Okay, so perhaps things were in a bad way.

Regardless, as more than one pundit said, if this is how people behave in the event of a relatively minor health issue (other than a false positive for e coli, which has since been proven to be an error, the water has tested okay - it’s just got silt mixed in it), we don’t want to think about how folks will behave when the compost hits the aquifer…after all, the boiling advisory was only implemented as a precaution and not because there was a serious risk of catching the creeping crud from the tap.

Well, now there’s a new crisis hitting the streets…SNOW.

I know it doesn’t look like much, and in some parts of the world it would only considered a dusting, but you need to keep a few things in mind:

1) Around these parts we don’t get much, if any, snow and when we do, it usually doesn’t last long which means people don’t usually get much experience with driving in it.

2) The drivers around here, surprisingly enough, can’t seem to get a handle on driving in the rain - of which we do get quite a bit - so expecting them to behave when dealing with any amount of snow is like asking that Paris Hilton be taken seriously as an actress.

I’ve often wondered why Vancouverites can’t remember how to drive in the rain, and I’ve developed a theory about this:

a) The human body is mostly water.

b) During dry spells, the body gradually loses some liquid but since it happens over a period of time, the body is able to become accustomed to the slow decrease in moisture.

c) When the rain falls, however, the body soaks it up quickly…this causes the electrical impulses in the brain to short out, causing people to drive like epileptic rutabagas.

It’s only a theory…if you’ve got something better, I’m open to suggestions.

In the meantime I’ll sit at home all snug and warm, watching holiday movies on TV, and try to guess if the roads will be clear enough for me to head up Burnaby Mountain to my fencing class tonight at Simon Fraser University.

“Mother, may I have some more petite marshmallows for my hot cocoa?”

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