A vocabulary of snow

plowalanche

Otto contemplates how to traverse a plowalanche.

We've had a lot of opportunity to think about snow this winter -- more than 63 inches of opportunity so far. And like those people in the Arctic who may (or may not) have hundreds of words of snow, we've been thinking about all the different types of snow -- and what to call it.

So we've compiled a list. Got suggestions? We'd love to hear 'em.

Autoberg - noun - A car that's nearly completely buried under accumulated and plowed snow. Extrication can take an hour or more. Also: carcicle.

Blinderbluff - noun - The piles of snow, often plowed or snowblown, that block the line of sight for people trying to pull out of a driveway.

Branchalanche - noun - When snow on a branch falls off, especially when someone causes the snow to fall off another person who doesn't expect it.

Dry snow - noun - The snow that falls on super cold nights. It squeaks when you walk on it.

Fake snow - noun - Snow so light and fluffy and feathery that it almost seems fake.

Fenderberg - noun - The grey, dirty snow and ice that accumulates behind a car's wheel. Example: "Man, I love kicking the fenderbergs off my car." Also known as: carnacles, wheel boogers, slush flaps, ice babies, tirecles, and winterberries. (Hat tip to Rob.)

Heart attack snow - noun - The heavy, wet snow that tends to cause people health problems when they over exert themselves shoveling it. (An actual thing.)

Let-it-snow snow - noun - The snow that falls when you're tucked in somewhere warm and don't have anywhere you have to be.

Movie snow - noun - Fluffy bits of gently falling snow, in moderate amounts. Looks like something from a film.

Parking lot range - noun - The snowy mountain ranges that rise in parking lots over the course of a winter.

Plowalanche - noun - When a plow pile crashes into an otherwise cleared space such as a sidewalk. Example: "I'd walk down the sidewalk, but it's totally blocked halfway down the street by a plowalanche."

Plowicade - noun - The plowed snow that blocks where a sidewalk enters the street. Related to the plowalanche, but slightly different because of placement. See other terms.

Plow pile - noun - The pile of snow the plow pushes in from of your driveway or walk. The plow pile often appears shortly after you've finished shovel.

Sidewalk snow - noun - The sort of snow that should cleared not too long after it's fallen.

Slush puddle - noun - The gray, dirty puddles of snow, ice, and water that often gather where the sidewalk meets the street. The puddles are often deceptively deep. And their ability to stain pants is formidable.

Snow canyon - noun - The structures that form along streets and sidewalks after successive accumulating snowfalls, especially those formed by plows or snowblowers. Like real canyons, the walls often show signs of the various layers of snowfalls.

Snowman snow - noun - Snow that's easily packable, and thus conducive for building snowmen. Also known as snowball snow.

Sugar snow - noun - The crunchy, icy snow that verges on sleet. It has the texture of granulated sugar and crunches when you walk on it.

Snowcoating - noun - Wet snow blown against all sorts of structures, coating them in sticky layer of snow.

Snowy dog face - noun - When snow sticks to a dog's face while on walk. Also: adorable.

Snow emergency syndrome - noun - The psychological condition that sets in upon a popular in dense urban areas when cars must be moved because of a snow emergency. It is often marked by frustration and fist shaking.

Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes - noun - The cute kind of snow.

Snowglobing - verb - When fluffy bits of snowflakes swirl around in the wind outside your window, like someone's shaken a snowglobe. Example: "I looked out the window this afternoon and it was snowglobing."

Snowhawk - noun - The snow that people neglect to clear from the top of their cars, especially SUVs. (via @sab_)

Surface hoar - noun - The jagged, crunchy ice left on top of snowbanks by sublimation. (Really, that's what it's called.)

Touch-up snow - noun - A light accumulation of snow that refreshes the appearance of everything after the previously fallen snow has gotten all grey and dingy.

Troy snow - noun - The kind that doesn't get cleared for some reason.

Yellow snow - noun - The snow you don't eat. See also: brown snow.

Comments

*slow clap* Well done, AOA. You had me at Autoberg.

A few (really stupid) ones:

"'Sno problem" - When a laid back neighbor responds positively to your request to help shovel.

"Widowmakers" - Treacherously large icicles.

"ABS Tester Weather" - When there is just enough snow covering the roads that hasn't been touched by a plow yet, causing your Anti-lock breaks to kick into action.

snow stroke doggy paddle - watching my dog fail to lead the pack on a snow shoe when the snow was deeper than he was. He had to settle for second in my wake.

Snirt - snow dirt; the nasty brown stuff that ends up on the side of roads.

Don't even get me started on "Troy Snow..."

Insurance Claim Snow - the snow or ice left on the road after a storm that causes someone to slide and hit other cars.

The form of winter weather all of us hate the most - mixed precrapitation - aka sleazy rain.

Sludge Bath: The required immediate bathing of small dogs and children after walking anywhere after snowfall.

Splatter Shock: The emotion incurred when walking into an important meeting or event and realizing that the back of your legs are covered in salt/snow/dirt.

Snowcusing: Using the snow as an excuse for missing/being late to every unpleasant responsibility.

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

What's All Over Albany?

All Over Albany is for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. In other words, it's for you. It's kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who can help you find out what's up. Oh, and our friends call us AOA.

Search

Recently on All Over Albany

Tips for buying firewood?

Wade asks: I'm looking for a reliable source of high quality seasoned firewood. Does anybody have a firewood guy they would recommend? Delivery preferred but... (more)

Walk/don't walk

In an opinion piece over at the Times Union, Walkable Albany's Andrew Neidhardt urges the city of Albany to change its use of pedestrian signal... (more)

Chad Orzel: Breakfast With Einstein

Check it out: Union College physics professor/science writer Chad Orzel has a new book out today called Breakfast with Einstein: The Exotic Physics of Everyday... (more)

Morning Blend

Fatal shooting in Albany + Albany police say a 28-year-old man was fatally shot near the intersection of the Judson Street and Second Street (map)... (more)

A big chunk of downtown Albany was just sold, and there are some big plans for the buildings

A large group of historic properties were sold in downtown Albany this month, and the deal could be a major milestone in the ongoing transformation... (more)

Recent Comments

I've seen a steady increase in cycling trips along Madison Ave. after the road diet. I've been one of those riders, too. It's made summertime trips from my house to the Point on Madison that much faster than walking, and there's really no need to drive that short distance - thereby saving a spot for another patron. I've not only enjoyed the F out of the trip, but burned a few calories, too, which considering my diet, is much needed. I'm very very pleased with this effort and thank CDTA, CDPHP and CDTC for their efforts in making this happen. I'm resolving to make MORE trips in 2019!

The new Zaitoon Kitchen location is open

...has 3 comments, most recently from June E Thorpe

Morning Blend for Dec 11

...has 1 comment, most recently from Bob

Bike share grew in both use and reach this year -- here's what CDTA's thinking about for next year

...has 7 comments, most recently from jake

Here's when the seasons really start and end in the Albany area*

...has 2 comments, most recently from Ra

The Albany Public Library is eliminating late fines for books and other items

...has 20 comments, most recently from Ra