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How to go out in a snowstorm

Posted by Karyn Polewaczyk  January 21, 2014 01:30 PM

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Miniskirts_in_snow_storm.jpgCredit: Wikipedia

This might seem trite, but it seems that some of us still haven’t figured out how to successfully maneuver going out in a snowstorm. (I’m looking at you, stiletto slingback-clad ladies of Faneuil Hall.) Or, maybe you’re the type who chooses to forego wintertime socializing altogether, instead nestled deeply into your couch, Netflix and GrubHub accounts.

With another batch of bad weather on its way, I figured I’d throw out a few tips I’ve learned along the way as a seasoned New Englander. Yes, I get that the polar vortex is kind of a big, really cold and potentially fatal deal, and no, I don’t think you should be an idiot and run outside in shorts like a pack of guys I see at least once a week do in my neighborhood. But come on! Winter is practically a nine-month ordeal here. Rallying to go out might get harder as you get older (I speak from experience), but in my opinion, it’s par for the course if you want to live here.

Put fashion last

When you’ve got your head down to avoid having the wind whip your face/creating a rat nest in your hair/falling flat on your rear end on the sidewalk (or subway escalator, as I painfully learned this past weekend), guess what? Everyone else does, too. I’m all for cute outerwear, but when the going gets tough, the tough whip out their ankle-length bubble coats and call it a day.

You can still find them—and on sale! since retailers are making way for spring merchandise—at places like EMS and City Sports. I scored mine at a secondhand shop for about $50, and given that I practically live in it, I’ve definitely gotten my money’s worth. As for the shoes: it’s duck season, baby. And I’m not talking boats.

Get yourself a pair of Bean Boots or their slightly furry equivalent, Sorel’s Joan of Artic laceups. If they ruin your outfit, then bring a big enough purse to stash a pair of heels, and coatcheck your snowboots upon arrival.

Go local

I’ve lived all over this city, and yet I’ll spend an hour (if we’re talking disabled subways) getting to some of my favorite tried-and-true spots. Which means that getting home hours later will be an expensive endeavor, thanks to Uber surge pricing and battling out for a fleeting line of cabs (no pun intended). Which is kind of stupid.

If you live within a relatively populated area, there’s likely a bar, lounge or restaurant nearby. Even if it’s not your usual go-to, make it yours when the weather gets nasty. If you have to walk? So be it. You’ll be dressed accordingly (see above)—and because this is Boston, no one will really care. Plus, neighbors! Those are always fun people to meet. Bonus points if it's a dive and serves pitchers of PBR.

Plan on a cab shortage

Have you ever tried to get a cab in the middle of a rainstorm, during rush hour, and there’s a Bruins home game? That’s what getting a cab is like at 2 AM on a Saturday night while the snow is pelting down at an ungodly rate. I guess I’m being obvious here; but if you’re going to do that thing I said you should maybe not do, which is to go across town and join your friends at a bar that’s near their apartment, then you’re going to have to wait awhile to get home. And you’re not allowed to complain about it.

Refuel and recharge

I’m not necessarily suggesting you pregame (and by the way, I’d like to retire that word, along with any other wanton party lingo born in 1998), but having a little something to keep you going before you step into a snowpocalypse can help. I stick with coffee, because I’m an old lady who likes to wear sleeping bag coats, but if a glass of wine or a small mixed drink will make you happy, then go for it. Have a light snack, too, so that your friends won’t roll your eyes about how tired the cold makes you.

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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About this blog

Karyn Polewaczyk lives and writes in Boston, and believes that heading out into that good night, like any adventure, begins with the first step. Let's Go Out is a conversation about dating and nightlife in our notoriously chilly city, with first-hand tips from the trenches. Karyn's writing, which focuses largely on women's lifestyle topics, has appeared in the Weekly Dig, Jezebel, xoJane, Northshore Magazine and More.com, among others. Follow her on Twitter at @KarynPolewaczyk.

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