Different Slants

Seeing the World from a New Angle

Chicago’s 1967 Big Snow and My Unexpected Love Affair, at 16!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Bob at 9:45 am on Wednesday, January 27, 2021

By Robert M. Katzman © January 14, 2018  (Updated January 27, 2023)

Close to sixty years ago on January 27, 1967, the “Big Snow” buried Chicago and I was trapped at my older sister Bonnie’s house because she had a college party and invited me, reluctantly. I was 16 and useless around girls. Shy and clueless. I was so square that I brought some poetry I wrote with me to read in case anyone wanted to hear it. Girls my age weren’t interested at all.

There were maybe 30 people there, half college men. They lived nearby and would have to leave after a while.

The remaining 15 girls were from out-of-town and were going to sleep wherever they fell, I guess.

I did read my poetry after a couple of hours went by and was amazed that the girls listened and asked me to read some more.

One time-stopping girl in particular. Damn!

A little later, all the lights went out.

Soft music was playing on the phonograph, same song, My Love, by Pet Clark, over and over and over.

People were pairing up and dancing in the dark.

I was sitting alone on the carpet like a third wheel when that same girl came over and asked me, Mr Cool, if I wanted to dance.

I looked up. An older woman, 18.

Tall, long strawberry blonde hair, slender, too beautiful to talk to Bonnie’s little brother.

Embarrassed (and dumb) I told her I didn’t know how to dance.

She told me to just put my arms around her and move a little, in the darkness. I did that.

After a while, there were couples lying on the floor and I was worried I’d trip over some of them.

When we were the (actual) last couple standing, she asked me if I wanted to neck.

Stunned, I managed to NOT say I had never done that before, but by then, she knew a lot about me, I guess.                                                    

Since I used to live in that house, I took her up to my old room, which still had a bed.

And a door, too. Ok, I wasn’t totally hopeless.


(and here I am lost in this dream…)


I learned a lot that night.

I learned how good a girl

Can smell when she is

Really, really close to you


Oh, and the thing about kissing

Is that the more you do it


With a little help

 From the other person

A guy can get better and better at it

And other things, too


So, trapped by the massive Big Snow

I stayed in Bonnie’s house for three days

Spending every second

With that stunning woman

72 hours seemed like

Just five minutes

Until she had to go back

To Southern Illinois


Except by then

I was hopelessly in love

With suave and tall Miss Perfect

Who knew everything about

Making a shy kid feel more confident


Never saw her again

Half a century later, she remains eternally…18

Don’t even think about her anymore

Except if its snowing at night in January

Or not snowing at night in January

Yeah, she’s forgotten, all right


Hey, Snowflake!

Where the hell are you now?

Yes, magic exists

Maybe desperation and acute loneliness

Appear on certain women’s wave-lengths

Maybe compassion and lust

I have no idea


Women are the Great Unknown

With invisible powers to

Attract whom they desire

I was the naive moth

Flying to her luminescence


An old Grampa’s heartache

about the one who got away.


She’s still the older woman now

Except I’m almost 73

I guess she’s, oh…75

Damn it, I was so crazy about that girl




Publishing News! 

Bob Katzman’s two new true Chicago books are now for sale, from him!
Vol. One: A Savage Heart and Vol. Two: Fighting Words

Gritty, violent, friendship, classic American entrepreneurship love, death, heartbreak and the real dirt about surviving in a completely corrupt major city under the Chicago Machine. More history and about one man’s life than a person may imagine.

Please visit my new website: http://www.dontgoquietlypress.com
If a person doesn’t want to use PayPaI, I also have a PO Box & I ship anywhere in America.

Send me a money order with your return and contact info.
I will get your books to you within ten days.
Here’s complete information on how to buy my books:

Vol 1: A Savage Heart and Vol. 2: Fighting Words
My books weigh almost 2 pounds each, with about 525 pages each and there are a total together of 79 stories and story/poems.

Robert M. Katzman
Don’t Go Quietly Press
PO Box 44287
Racine, Wis. 53404-9998  (262)752-3333, 8AM–7PM

Books cost $29.95 each, plus shipping

For: (1)$3.95; (2)$5.95; (3)$7.95; (4)$8.95 (5)$9.95;(6) $10.95

(7) $11.95; (8) $12.95; (9)$13.95 (10)$15.95 (15)$19.95

I am also for hire if anyone wants me to read my work and answer questions in the Chicago/Milwaukee area. Schools should call me for quantity discounts for 30 or more books. Also: businesses, bookstores, private organizations or churches and so on.


Comment by Bernar

January 27, 2021 @ 10:33 am

simply wonderful. as surprising and special as the big snow, itself. thank you, my brother, cousin. thank you.

Comment by Brad Dechter

January 27, 2021 @ 10:59 am

Great story that brings a smile! Reminds me of my 3 days of partying with my brother while my parents were stuck with my other brother and sister on the north side of Chicago.
Thanks for sharing and the smile!

Comment by Kumari de Silva

January 27, 2021 @ 11:14 am

I like your story! It reminds me of being young and 16 and although I was a girl, I have a similar fond memory of being in a dimly lit party – before everyone had electronics, just enjoying the feelings of youth with another. . . I was only 3 during that ’67 snow storm, but I remember another one that hit in the mid 70s that closed up Chicago for a couple of days

Comment by charlie newman

January 26, 2023 @ 11:23 am


Comment by Jim Payne

January 26, 2023 @ 9:10 pm

No matter how many encounters with a girl since then no, matter how many decades, those are a memory forever. What you remembered helped me remember. Thank you.

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