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NYC’s Early Picnic Season Actually Horrible Omen

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Usually, we have until late April before the local anomaly of people wearing shorts and tee shirts inappropriately takes place. It’s a fun NY tradition; we make fun of their optimism and are rewarded with smug laughter when they end up stuck in a blizzard, desperately trying to hail a cab in flip flops.

Tricked by February

Overly optimistic

This year, however, it’s almost like winter skipped over us and that’s because according to top meteorologists, it sort of has.

Does anyone remember the D-list celebrity known as “Polar Vortex” that braced us for freezing wind chills and huge mounds of snow in 2015? 

I made “Polar Vortex” into a character.

With that dominatrix sounding name; I played a pregnant sex worker who didn’t understand why she was suddenly trending but welcomed the publicity. Well, here’s your answer: like an STD, she has continued to spread globally.

(2015 at otto’s shrunken head polar vortex shares a drink with the cast as the snow rages on outside)

2015 at Ottto’s Shrunken Head “polar vortex” shares a drink with the cast as the snow raged outside.

The “Polar Vortex” didn’t just disappear, it shifted. Right now it’s dumping tons of snow, ice and bone shattering wind chills across northern Russia and Europe.

So what exactly is a polar vortex? In short, it’s presumed to be a direct affect of global warming. By presumed, I mean that scientist’s are pretty damn sure it is; but economists who stand to lose money over it still say nope. No problem. Business as usual!

The reason for weather change in the first place is due to jet streams which generally stay relatively predictable. According to AccuWeather, “a jet stream is a high-speed river of air at the level in the atmosphere where jet aircraft cruise. South of the jet stream, the weather is usually warm, north it’s cold. A polar vortex happens when these jet streams dip, allowing pockets of arctic air to suddenly shift.“



The clashing of cold air versus mild air is what causes weather upheaval. This can mean anything from flooding, hurricanes, blizzards, tornados, droughts, to just plain old thunderstorms. If the polar vortex remains strong, it will continue to keep arctic air trapped far north.

This forces areas that normally host snowball fights in February to host impromptu whiffle ball games instead.

When the polar vortex first hit in 2015a funnel of air from the upper atmosphere covered NYC with some of the coldest wind chills and deepest snow drifts in recent history. It now continues to move further north, leaving us with unpredictable pockets of late spring weather in the middle of winter.

I am writing this in mid-February. It’s 39 degrees at 11pm in Bed-Stuy. Wednesday it will reach 70. Tomorrow’s high will be 55. I grew up in NYC and I can’t remember ever throwing a BBQ in February until this winter.  Don’t get me wrong; there’s nothing like beer, ribs and the Pixies under the NYC skyline, but one can’t help but say it feels slightly ominous; especially when “Wave Of Mutilation” starts playing off the ever influential record, Doolittle.

Scientists cannot completely predict the outcome since weather conditions are unpredictable at heart. Still, as jet streams are disturbed, entire ecosystems are being affected. Without proper resources to study these outcomes (such as the recently defunded EPA ) there’s no telling how detrimental these changes can be.

Cancel your winter vacation, put out your yard sale set and get ready. Today’s frost may be tomorrow’s beach day.

Who needs science when you have money anyway?

I mean, The Dinosaurs bribed their way into a new eon, right? That early 1990’s show was a hit for a reason: because it was way ahead of its time. A greedy boss creating enough pollution to soon kill off the adorable “not the mamma” baby and his slogan; rips off hard workers and fuels the end of a dominant species. 

Via - Pinterest

Via – Pinterest

It isn’t ironic as much as it’s a forewarning from comedy writers that an apocalyptic end can result from greed, and that if we simply studied enough history, we should have seen this coming.


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Tiana Miller

Tiana Miller

One gnarly dude, man.