You know how on your Spacebook feed (or whatever the kids call that social media thing) some photo will pop up of what you’re were doing years ago? Huh — that’s sort of what we do with our history column, only we do it with text.
Anyhew, if you’re like the Betster, those photos have shown a mysterious, frozen substance called “snow.” You may remember snow: those big, fluffy white flakes that fell from the sky and covered the land with cool awesomeness? That stuff. We skied on it. We snowmachined on it.
Also, we cursed it, shoveled it, got stuck in it and sometimes drove off the road from it. We had to shake snow off our mountain ash and birch trees to keep them from bending. We had to put on XTRATUFs — oh wait, we wear rubber boots in the rain. Mostly, though, snow meant fun. Snow meant winter had come to Alaska here at Latitude 59 degrees and some change.
Snow means the land lightens up. We’re not driving into soggy, dismal gloom, but actually have visible lanes. Snow means the end of the Pineapple Express, a roaring column of wet sloppy mess hitting us like a fire hose from Hawaii.
Snow is what Lower 48 states like Colorado have. Without snow, what are we Alaskans? How can we claim superiority over mortals who live south of 45 degrees? How can we claim to be tougher, hardier and different when folks Outside endure freezing cold and we get … Well, look out your window. That stuff.
Rain. Clouds. Fog. Endless gloom. The skies are gray, the land is brown and puddles fill up and become small ponds. We don’t even have ice, which OK isn’t so bad, but if we had clear weather without snow at least maybe the lakes would freeze and we could go skating.
We’ve been stuck in a weather rut, Betsteroids, and we’re not talking that stretch last summer where it seemed like it would be sunny forever. Although, come to think of it, that meant wildfires and smoke and road closures and driving through roaring flames on either side as you questioned why you had tried to go to Anchorage in the first place.
OK, maybe some rain isn’t so bad. We prayed for rain just months ago. We hoped for rain, lit candles for rain and made all sorts of cosmic bargains for rain. When sunshine means smoke and smoke means a wall of flame that could swoop down at any time and devour entire neighborhoods, well, OK, bring it on. That’s what we asked for, right?
And here we are, Rain City. California would love our rain. Some drought-suffering corner of the world would sacrifice a goat for just one day of our gloom.
So suck it up, kids. The weather will be what the weather will be, and there’s not a whole heck of a lot we can do except roll with it. Oh yeah, and this: Celebrate the coolest town in the universe by enjoying these Best Bets:
BEST WINTER IS COMING BET: The Homer Rope Tow’s Warren Miller Ski Movie Fundraiser is at 7 p.m. tonight at the Homer Theatre. Tickets are $10-$15. This is the Rope Tow’s annual fundraiser, featuring Warren Miller’s “Timeless.” This is one show only. Adult tickets are $15, students are $10. There will also be door prizes. Help support Homer’s local skiing and snowboarding hill by attending this annual movie event sponsored by the Kachemak Ski Club. Tickets available in advance at the Theatre and Homer Bookstore, or at the door.
BEST BOWL BET: The annual Empty Bowls Fundraising Lunch is being held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Friday at the Homer United Methodist Church. Enjoy soup, bread and dessert for $10. Add a handcrafted ceramic bowl by a local artist that you get to take home for $35. Tickets available at the Homer Bookstore or at the door.
BEST BUNNELL BET: The Bunnell Street Arts Center presents: “New Works: Readings from the Valdez Frontier Theatre Conference” at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the center. Pier One Theatre and Bunnell bring you highlights from the Valdez Last Frontier Theatre Conference. The performances start Friday and continue Saturday and Sunday. Tickets are pay as you can, available per night or as a three-night pass. Visit www.bunnellarts.org or call 235-2662 for more information. Friday: “Yalu River” by Nan Gatewood Satter and “Cathy the Great” by Joy Cutler. Saturday at 7:30 p.m.: “Road Trip” by Jan Probst, “No Surprises” by Kevin Michael Wesson, “A Moment of Clarity” by Phillip Middleton Williams and “A Wee Rembrandt” by Schatzie Schafers. Sunday at 7:30 p.m.: “The Extinction Therapist” by Clem Martini.
BEST BELLY LAUGH BET: There will be two Improv Comedy Shows to benefit the Homer Flex School Food Programs at 7 p.m. Friday and 7 p.m. Saturday at the Art Barn. This is an all-improvised comedy show with Fresh Produce, Homer’s long-running improvisation teaching and performing troupe.
BEST BEES BET: Salmonfest Music Series Presents: The Jangle Bees at 9 p.m. Saturday at Alice’s Champagne Palace. This is one of Alaska’s up and coming bands and it’s their first Salmonfest Music Series performance. The lineup includes Matt Brenna, formally of Blackwater Railroad Co. and Big Fat Buddha, Emi Williams, Forest Wilson and Chad Reynvaan. The Jangle Bees are from Anchorage. Their music harkens back to a time when twelve-string electric-guitars ruled the airwaves, and songs about heartache made you get up and dance the night away. Tickets are $10 at the door.
BEST CUT A RUG BET: Dust off your dancin’ boots! There will be a Square and Contra Dance at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday at West Homer Elementary School. Rich Kleinleder will call to music by the Spit City Slickers. Please bring clean, soft-soled shoes to dance in. Beginners are welcome. Admission is $10 for adults and $8 for youth. Kids 16 and younger get in free. These dances are sponsored by the Homer Community Recreation Program.