Chicago's wind chill factor

Chicago, Illinois
January 22, 2013

I struggled to fall back asleep after being awaken in the middle of the night by a gun-like sound.

I was turning the TV on when I thought I heard the gun-like sound again. I thought I still was half-asleep, so I wasn't sure if the sound was real yet, or what was going on at all really.

The TV was playing the news station. They were talking about tonight’s cold winds dropping the temperature to 15 (°F) below zero. I turned the TV off to be able to hear the silence better. The dog, which was sleeping on my legs, put his ears up.

I heard Chicago was a dangerous city, but my friend assured me when I agreed to house-sit his house that this area was very safe.

I heard the sound again.

The dog got into an alert position and started barking. then I was sure I wasn't dreaming, there was a gun-like sound and it seemed to be coming from downstairs.

I stood up; turned on the lights and started going downstairs, slowly. The dog stood behind me. Somehow the dog made me feel brave and safe, and that’s funny because it was a small dog. (Small dogs can be fearless… not this one though)

I checked the front door. It was locked. I checked the back door. It was also locked. I looked outside through the living room's window, but I couldn't see anything but darkness and the silhouettes of trees fighting against the freezing winds, which apparently was normal around Chicagoland.

It gets so cold around here that, my friend told me, he sometimes leaves his drinks outside the house to keep it cold instead of the fridge. (Often, it's colder outside the house than inside the fridge)

I was about to walk upstairs when the gun-like sound stuttered me. The sound came from behind the kitchen door.

The dog run to the kitchen and started barking. My heart started to bump loudly. What should I do? Should I ask who was out there? Should I run up stairs? (The two things scary movies teach us not to do were the my first instincts)

The dog was looking at me moving his small tail side to side. Then I knew no one was out there; otherwise the dog would've been more alert and mad.

Maybe he already figured what was going on out and he was waiting for me to catch on.

I turned on the outside lights when I heard it again. This time I heard it clearly, it wasn't a gun-like sound but it was loud, and it followed a sound you hear when you pour a Coca-Cola on a cup. (You know, glop glop glop, ptsssssssshhhh)  It’s hard to describe, but that’s the sound I heard.

Aha! moment
So then I cached on with the dog. I realized what was going on. I opened the kitchen door and I stepped outside to find what called a "the pop massacre" of all the soda cans my friend left outside.

You see, any temperature below freezing (32°F) can cause a soda can to explode, so being outside -15°F below zero here, one can after the other exploded loudly making that gun- like sound.

True story.

Popular Posts