courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net Victor Habbick

courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net Victor Habbick

I read the word – Vortex – in a recent fantasy novel. I also heard it used by the psychic-medium, Kim Russo, who said deceased spirits travel through it to visit loved ones still living. If I’m not mistaken, the Star Trek Enterprise was sucked through a couple of vortexes in their day, too.

Hmm, the word is used by fantasy authors, science fiction and psychic-mediums. Now, the media is asking us to take the word seriously. Polar Vortex. Really? Is that all they’ve got? Do they really think the word scares me? Come on, media, I know you can do better than that with your fear-mongering. How many times have I seen you standing in hurricane winds telling other people to run for their lives or they’ll die an agonizing death?

Of course, the word “vortex” is a real word. According to dictionary.com, it’s a whirling mass of air, water or fire as in a tornado shape. Okay, I guess that is pretty scary. I concede to you, media, for finding yet another unique terminology to frighten a population.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not making light of the treacherous, frigid temperatures. I know I don’t live in the north anymore, but I used to, and that’s why the media frustrates me with their scare tactics. They act as if this has never happened in the history of history. Those of you under the age of forty, or who have never experienced the deep freeze, pay attention.


The year my husband and I were first dating, we were silly little twenty-somethings. We had only been on a few dates, but were growing quite enamored with one another. My sweet, innocent young beau had never been to the party area of downtown Chicago, and I volunteered to corrupt him by showing it to him. So, we headed down on a balmy zero-degree (17c) day. The windy city brushed our skin with its breezes at a mere -50 (45c) degrees.

Silly 20-something’s in parachute pants.

Still young and romantic, my considerate boyfriend offered me a horse & carriage ride. Yep, there were still a couple of horses out in the stuff, but I wasn’t that young and dumb. I found a corner pub for us to duck into, and it had a lovely fireplace right smack dab in the middle.

Chi-town carriage ride at Christmas-time.

During another winter on a warmer, 12 degree day, we went to see a Chicago Bulls basketball game with Michael Jordan (obviously quite some time ago). I felt sorry for the poor man standing outside in the icy air taking money for the parking lot. I said as much to him as we paid. His answer, “Eh, it’s Chicago. What do you expect?” Yep, that’s a Chicago super fan for ya. Da Bulls.

Michael Jordan all warm & cozy inside playing basketball.

So you see, a polar freeze (vortex) is not so uncommon. All the media did, was find a new way to describe winter in the north, while at the same time, scare the pants off people (but you better keep them on in those temps).

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About Lori D

Observer, thinker, learner, analyzer and writer. Enjoy dogs, cooking, centering, laughing and sarcasm.
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26 Responses to Vortex

  1. Pingback: Rainy and Raw | Lori's Lane

  2. Kathy says:

    Exactly! I so agree with you. Silly Polar Vortex expression! Wonder who came up with that? Enjoyed seeing the pics of you and your beau in the north all those years ago.

    • Lori D says:

      I dug through old photo albums to find pics of us back in the cold-days. I barely remember using film and having to get them developed. :-) And, who knew I ever looked that young? Heh. Thanks for reading about the dreaded polar vortex, Kathy, as you experience it daily.

  3. jmmcdowell says:

    Below-zero temperatures and wind chills were the norm when I was growing up in the Midwest. Then things got milder for quite a few winters. I really can’t take much of TWC because of their constant “It’s the end of the world” presentation of their “stories.”

    • Lori D says:

      I’m glad I posted this, because I’m learning from my comments that most people don’t take the media serious anymore. It’s good to know. Stay warm, JM.

  4. Aussa Lorens says:

    Haha okay I didn’t know that the “polar vortex” was an actual thing that was being said in the media (I don’t have a TV) I thought it was a joke that people were using, like “snowpocalypse.” The media is silly.

    • Lori D says:

      LOL Yep, the media is being dead serious with their terminology. Heh. No TV, eh? I think you’re on to something. Thanks for commenting, Miss Aussa.

  5. My husband was just telling me two days ago that he regrets never seeing Michael Jordan play. If he had the chance now, he’d definitely brave the “polar vortex” to make it happen. :)

    • Lori D says:

      That’s funny, that you read this after he was just discussing it with you. That game was quite some time ago. I even noticed in the photos that Jordan still had hair! Yes, it was definitely worth the polar vortex to watch him play. :-) Thanks for coming over, Miss Anita. :-)

  6. You saw Michael Jordan play basketball? WOW…he was great! I saw Larry Bird play in Atlanta…I am a big Celtics fan…oh, weather…excellent post. You hit the nail right on the head :).
    The pictures were cuties.

    • Lori D says:

      We look like babies. Hee, hee. Larry Bird’s pretty cool too. Hey, you know, I’ve got some pretty cool sport stories I can tell some time. I wrote about meeting my sports idol (football), Walter Payton, in my short story anthology. It happened back in the days of the photos on this post. Thanks for the nice comment, Miss Linda.

      • Trade sports stories any time…I went to school where Payton played…fitness center named for him…my brother was a really good football coach….one son played for Ole Miss and the other for Mississippi State…they know(one does) lots of coaches and players. So most may be second hand.
        Brother and one son both gone now to coach the heavenly teams!

        • Lori D says:

          Maybe your bro is coaching Walter Payton. Would love to hear your stories. Hugs on your losses.

          • At my age, losses are becoming the norm. While I have been chatting with you, my daughter and son have both sent email and text. Their Aunt on their father’s side died today. I remember her as a kind and funny person. I missed her after the divorce. His family chose not to stay in contact with my children and I. Later, my son went back and did get to know her. My daughter never did. I am sorry for not only her loss but also for theirs. It is hard to know what to say to them.

  7. territerri says:

    The media is always coming up with trendy ways to promote their stories. At any point in recent history, this weather pattern might have prompted story headlines such as as Wintergate, Operation Hunker Down, or some such silliness. Eh. I guess it gives us something to talk about during these long, cold days, right?

  8. viveka says:

    I think that under extreme temperatures I think kids should stay at home … because the safety of getting them to and from school. In UK and Ireland they close schools if it falls a bit of snow.
    In Sweden in the North Sweden we can get temperatures down to -36, but they are used to it.
    But it’s colder over in US and Canada than up by the polar circle just now.
    I miss the winter … we are still on +8, but this weekend they are talking about minus degrees and snow. Happy Days.
    Splendid post, Lori. What does “vortex” means ????

    • Lori D says:

      Hi Viveka. A vortex is a whirling mass, sort of like the first photo on my blog post. It’s like a spinning tunnel the shape of a tornado. Our media is being over dramatic about our winter by using that word. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  9. The main thing is to find a way to keep warm and I see you are good at that!

  10. LOL. Lori, I grew up in New England so I’m kinda stumped by how the news talks about the “polar plunge” here. It’s freaking New England. Ethan Frome country. Come on. Granted the -50 of the midwest is not familiar to me, but -temperatures happen here too. :)

    • Lori D says:

      I know, right. I mean, it’s January. Is it supposed to be 80 degrees up there? Sheesh, what is the media thinking? Always good to see you here, Kourtney. Thanks for reading and commenting.

  11. Carrie Rubin says:

    You’re so right–the media does a fantastic job of amping everything up. To be sure, it was bitter cold here in Ohio, but I chuckled a bit that they canceled school 2 days in a row. “Bitterly cold” here is not the same as bitterly cold in North Dakota where I grew up. Getting school canceled was a rarity. Minus 20 degrees below zero? Well, then, ‘button up’ was the motto. :)

    • Lori D says:

      North Dakota! Yikes. I’m shivering thinking of it. That’s funny, “button up.” Well, stay warm up there in Ohio, Carrie. I always appreciate hearing from you.

  12. andy1076 says:

    That’s a perfect way to define vortex :D horse carriages and wow Chicago Bulls back in the day huh? you definitely have been in and out through it :D

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