Thursday, March 5, 2015

Dueling Weatherpersons

Oh boy. Here we are on the cusp of another winter storm, which can only mean one thing...the revenge of the weather nerds is upon us. 

That's right, the Internet has been buzzing with NAM's, EURO's and GFS's for days now. With each new run of these computer models, meteorologists great and small burst forth with their latest predictions. Barely comprehensible maps appear with lots of colors and squiggly lines offering visual "explanation" for why we can absolutely, positively count on 2-8 inches of snow. Each of these forecasts comes with the requisite weasel words which allow the meteorologist with enough ass-cover to allow for plausible deniability if we end up getting nothing but rain. But it's all great fun, and as far as I can tell, the professionals have about the same record of accuracy as the growing legion of homegrown, do-it-yourself weather forecasters...like my friend and former youth pastor Jeremy Welborn. Weather forecasting seems to be the hobby of choice for the kind of people who might have put together model airplanes or collected stamps fifty years ago. Apparently, anyone with a laptop and an Internet connection can take up this new hobby. The best part of meteorology is the fact that, just like baseball, if you're successful just thirty percent of the time, you're in the Hall of Fame.

This particular storm must be something special because it seems that each of our three local TV guys has a different forecast. Our infamous, and obnoxiously arrogant Internet weather expert,who prefers the exotic "DT" changes his forecast about every thirty minutes and produces more incomprehensible maps than anyone. He also provides some level of entertainment by constantly berating his television competitors for being "idiots and morons." Whenever the TV guys wind up being right, DT lowers the cone of silence over his operation before finally explaining that he was actually right all along but we were too stupid to understand his superior, if nuanced, models.

 So, depending on who I chose to listen to, I'm prepared to endure each of the following; a day of cold rain followed by a bit of sleet, a wintry mix( an ass-covering formulation if ever there was one) which may or may not switch over to all snow anywhere between 11 am and 4 pm, or a brief interlude of snow that could drop anywhere from a trace to ten inches of the white stuff, in an area that may include all of the eastern seaboard, or may be confined to an area the size of New Kent County.

I prefer the old days of George Carlin's imagination and his famous "hippy-dippy weatherman"...

"The temperature outside is 52 degrees at the airport...which is stupid since nobody lives at the airport. Tonight's forecast...DARK, followed by widely scattered light in the morning. Tomorrow's weather will be dominated by a large Canadian low.....which is not to be confused with a Mexican high!!"