I'll admit, it's been a tough one. I don't actually remember a colder more snowier winter. We didn't even get a January thaw this year. How many mornings did we awake to scenes like this?
How many times did this machine operation rattle our cups and mirrors and brains?
How many times were we nearly extinguished by one of these?
With so many snowfalls this year, I began to notice certain trends, namely things you can tell about a person based on how they shovel their stairs:
The Boot Technique:
This method is done by kicking the snow from left to right using one's boot. It is quick, easy and effective. Those employing this technique tend to be scattered, lazy, busy or all of the above. They are often pressed for time (read: running late) and do not consider shovelling a valid investment. They do, however, recognize the importance of basic mobility and have done the bare minimum to avoid being forsaken by the postal worker and to safely (more or less) climb up and down the stairs. Personality type tends to be eccentric, anxious and spontaneous. These people make good, loyal friends, but if you want to see them, make sure you write yourself into their calendars as they tend to be absent-minded.
Next we have the Broom Technique:
This technique is typically endorsed by those 75 years of age and older. First they shovel, then they spend the better part of an hour going over the stairs with a solid straw broom, carefully making sure that each flake has been individually dealt with. Such people are meticulous, bored and hopelessly perfectionists. You can be sure that the inside of their homes are spotless and filled with doilies and crocheted Kleenex boxes. Such people are stable friends but only so long as you can adhere to their anal requirements.
The Walking Technique.
Almost 100% of those who adhere to this technique are male. They tend to be under 20, sloppy and self-centred. Eating habits are poor and hygiene is questionable. They are lazy, tired and often oblivious to their surroundings. They procrastinate terribly and forget do most what they say they will. They make terrible employees and as friends they are good to smoke up with, but that's about it. Conversation tends to be dull and monotone.
The Abstinence Technique
These people tend to be rich and a little scattered. They had the brains to take off to some warm place for a few weeks, but they neglected to hire anyone to shovel on their behalf, which is a welcomed sight to petty thieves looking for an easy laptop or rich-people snacks.
And finally, the Standard Shovel Technique
Adherents to this technique are the pillars of our economy. These people get shit done. They shovel the stairs on the way to work in the morning. Then again when they get back. And they don't give it a second thought. They grab the shovel. They do it. They put the shovel back. Then they go on to accomplish dozens of other household chores that most of the above groups procrastinate or avoid or pay someone else to do. They are well-rounded individuals with a reasonable balance of empathy and pragmatism. These make solid friends, as long as they are not watching their favourite TV program when you need them.
And there, in a nutshell, are some of the most commonly seen shovelling techniques and their corresponding personality types. One of the above staircases is my own. To which category, dear readers, do you think your author subscribes?