The surfer who picked up the snake on a California beach and dropped it in a five gallon bucket probably didn’t realize the yellow bellied sea snake he just handled is one of the most venomous reptiles on the planet. “It looked lethargic,” the surfer said; then, he added “I touched it and it started to move.” Fortunately for the surfer, yellow bellied sea snakes aren’t aggressive and his snake had been battered by the elements. Battered or not, the discovery of the snake has created a real to-do. The environmental group Head the Bay has put out an all-points bulletin asking beach combers to report any snake landfalls they encounter. Take images and record location data, accidental herpetologists are told. It’s not the snake’s poisonous nature that’s attracted attention- it’s that fact that one hadn’t been spotted on a California beach for over thirty years. Something is bringing them north from their usual habitat; scientists believe that something is El Nino- the periodic warming of the Pacific Ocean caused by changing wind and atmospheric patterns. For the us in Northeast, this means above average temperatures and some real hand wringing about what to do with our Porsches…
On December 14th, the temperature at 7:00 am was fifty-one degrees- only four degrees short of the top down target for some Boxster drivers in the Club. The temperature on Christmas Eve shattered records, reaching 72 degrees- warmer than it was on the Fourth of July. For those of us with our cars in storage, this is painful. While temperatures are setting records, our Boxster languishes in the garage with balls of steel wool unceremoniously stuffed in its tail pipe and with tires bloated with 45 lb./psi of air. To add insult to injury I’ve been passing BMW Z4’s with their tops down. So do we reinstate our insurance and get the car back on the road? And what about the oil that was changed prior to storage- do we drive the car and dirty the oil? Hey, New Country Porsche offers to transport cars to winter storage via flatbed truck to avoid driving the vehicle after service.
Bill Patzert, a climatologist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab in California called this year’s El Nino a potential “Godzilla” event. According to Patzert, it’s nearly guranteed the world will see some severe impacts unless the “physics of the universe have changed.” Sure, it will snow sometime and there will be cold days; but, what if the severe impacts in the Northeast mean a warm winter and clear roads? Of course, there are some in the club who don’t have this dilemma; they keep their cars on the road year-round and we’d love to hear from them. For the rest of us whose cars hibernate while lilac bushes bloom in December, the prospect of a balmy winter is downright painful.
On a different note, thanks to members who wrote regarding their preference for music while driving. Interestingly, the most common choice was- no music at all. Drivers seem to prefer the music their cars make. Gotta agree. For those who do prefer a tune now and then, here’s a play list from Bryan Hollenbaugh, a man who definitely knows his way around music. Bryan calls his list a “Baker’s Dozen to add to the twists and turns over the course of an hour.”
Born to Run – Bruce Springsteen
Running Down A Dream – Tom Petty
Life is a Highway – Tom Cochrane
Where the Streets Have No Name – U2
Fast Car – Tracy Chapman
Ramblin’ Man – Allman Brothers
Road to Nowhere – Talking Heads
On the Road Again – Willie Nelson
Running On Empty – Jackson Browne
Interstate Love Song – Stone Temple Pilots
Baker Street – Gerry Rafferty
The Distance – Cake
King of the Road – Roger Miller
Some great tunes…thanks to Bryan for his suggestions.