Let Them Eat Snow

Michael Bloomberg is a very wealthy man. So wealthy, that he can buy whatever weather he likes. That is, if he doesn’t like the weather wherever he happens to be, he can simply zoom off to some other portion of the planet that features weather more to his liking.

But, alas for him, this is no longer so easy, for in recent years Bloomberg has decided that he wants to be a politician. He first bought the mayoralty of New York City; in the course of things, he decided he liked the job so much that he changed the law so that he could buy an unprecedented third term. Now, some believe, he wants to purchase the presidency. Emulating in this his fellow media mogul, Silvio Berlusconi, who has repeatedly purchased the presidency of Italy, and rhythmically shelled out whatever additional monies might be necessary to buy his way out of the various scandalous behaviors to which he is prone, and that occasionally come to public and/or judicial notice.

I say “alas for him,” because these days, being a political figure and all, Bloomberg is sometimes constrained in purchasing the weather of his choice. For instance, when mountains of snow recently buried his city, he could hardly pick up and jet off to Barbados; the hoi polloi tend not to appreciate such desertions. As Chris Christie, there in New Jersey, recently learned, to his distress.

Even though Bloomberg did remain in his city, as it was transformed temporarily into the Alps, he did receive some heat. Because it developed that although the city’s snowplows efficiently cleared those streets where Bloomberg-type humans might happen to go, whole regions of the city occupied by “the little people” saw nary a plow, for days. An artificial organism like a city needs regular transfusions: after two or three plow-less days, many of those little people were hungry and cold. Because delivery trucks were unable to transport food to neighborhood markets, and fuel suppliers could not navigate the streets to deliver combustibles.

Eventually, particularly as this was New York City, screaming commenced. Bloomberg at first appeared thoroughly befuddled: he was not only unaware that most of his city remained buried, but seemed somewhat confused as to even the basic nature and meaning of non-Bloombergian realms like “Queens” and “the Bronx.” When a resident of his city attempted to commit suicide, but was prevented from doing so, because his leap from a window was arrested by the soft cushion of towering mounds of garbage bags that had accumulated on the streets during the plow-less days, well, Bloomberg seemed perplexed by this, too.

As I proceed through my dotage, I grow increasingly convinced that, in many cases, good fiction can more fully and accurately communicate truths than mere reportage. Thus, beyond the “furthur,” I present excerpts from John Kenney’s recent take in the New Yorker on Mayor Bloomberg’s response to the snowing of New York, presented as selections from Bloomberg’s own personal diary.

December 27th
How was the Mayor’s office supposed to know that snow was coming? Are we mystics, simply because we sit in an open space and are all very rich?

The snow is a mystery to me. One day, no snow. The next, so much snow. Where does it come from? Will it stay forever? If only we could fashion a large wall or blade and attach it to a big truck and somehow push the snow away. Perhaps in the future. Perhaps Apple is working on it now. The iPlow.

Who knew there were four other boroughs? Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, and the other one.

December 28th
The criticism mounts. Someplace called the Bronks (sp?) remains snowbound. Am I missing something? Yes, there is a lot of snow. Yes, we haven’t plowed. Yes, the subways and buses aren’t really running so well. So why don’t people simply use their helicopters?

More stories. More criticism. Stress. Can’t sleep more than eight hours at a stretch. The critics do not bother me. I am covered in a metaphorical nonstick Teflon, which I have heard might be linked to cancer, so maybe that’s not a good metaphor, and in fact I had the staff remove all Teflon cookware from the kitchen. Where is the kitchen?

December 29th
Rode in a “plow.” It was big and fun, but the man smelled like the inside of a ski hat, if that ski hat had also fallen in a public toilet in France and then somehow found its way into a cheese toilet factory for a year. His name was Ramon, and we got to talking. “Ramon,” I said, “where do you stay when you’re in the Hamptons?”

December 30th
The only thing I’ve ever found harder than moving all that snow is making Business Week an interesting magazine.

Good news. Snow melts, my aides tell me. Now, where did all the garbage come from?


2 Responses to “Let Them Eat Snow”

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When I Worked

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