Multitasking while shoveling some snow

So Better Half and I were shoveling snow out of the driveway last Saturday, two human plows, each of us with our own way of approaching the job.

It was our “couples-out” highlight of the weekend, truth be told, two lovebirds flinging the white stuff into what became montrous mounds of winter 2018.

Nothing says love like dueling snow shovels.

One of the shovels, incidentally, is what Better Half got me for Valentine’s Day one year because he “digs” me.

Anyway, we were all bundled up, given it was super cold, and we were engrossed in the task at hand, making a way so we could back cars out of the garage if we felt the urge or inclination to actually venture out at some point.

There wasn’t a lot of traffic while we were doing this, mind you, because it was still snowing slightly, and the roads were so-so, passable but, hey, if you could be home cozy in your jammies, nursing a mug of hot chocolate, binge-watching TV, so be it.

I noticed the car passing by slowly but thought little of it, until, that is, the car stopped, backed up, and the driver rolled down her window.

She was talking to me, a snow shoveler intent on driveway snow eradication, a person layered in winter wear like Ralphie’s little brother in “The Christmas Story.”

Who is this winter warrior talking to me, I wondered.

My first thought was somebody’s lost and asking for directions, possibly about to be very disappointed because my directions aren’t a guarantee of getting anywhere other than more lost, more frustrated.

In the time it took my brain to discredit that theory, given we live and drive and arrive in the age of GPS navigating and don’t really need to ask how to get from here to there, I decided I recognized the driver who apparently recognized me, too, snow shovel and all.

Turns out, she didn’t need driving directions — she needed information on how to submit campus news for publication in the newspaper.

We chatted about that, and all was well. She got her information on the process, and I got a shoveling break, feeling useful beyond snow removal.

But I had to laugh to myself, first off because I can appreciate multitasking and seizing the moment like my friend driving by, wondering about campus news publication, and then, boom, there’s a newspaper person conveniently at hand.

Many are the times I’ll get a club news release passed along to me before church, for example, a hand-off from pew to pew, person to person, or I’ll be somewhere, even on a jog, and get an envelope with a community news items handed to me by someone I know.

It’s all good, nice to be needed, nicer yet to be useful.

I got another chuckle later in the week when the campus news items arrived via e-mail, prefaced with “Janice, as per our conversation while you were shoveling snow on Saturday…”

Have a good week everyone — hopefully one low on shoveling but high on helping others.

(Kiaski, a resident of Richmond, is a staff columnist and community editor for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times. She can be contacted at