Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Strunk White, Idiot Weatherman: No Such Thing As TMI

I'm sitting here watching a good program on TV.

There is a stationary weather alert banner across the bottom of the screen, which periodically changes to update information in various locations. Every so often, the stationary banner becomes a moving ticker, displaying the same information.

To the left of the banner/ticker is the station's logo, with the words "WEATHER ALERT" underneath.

Above the logo is an animated weather map, which includes at least 4 surrounding states.

Then, the program is interrupted. There is Strunk White, Idiot Weatherman, at the Channel 13 Weather Panic Button Center. As usual, he looks like he just climbed out of bed, and wore his cheap suit instead of pajamas.

Now, Strunk White, Idiot Weatherman, begins talking about the "emergency weather advisory", which is in the next state! It is hours south of us. So far so, that I can't believe they can even be getting this broadcast down there.

Next, Strunk White, Idiot Weatherman, begins to describe the conditions there. I am not making this up. He covers how the hail there has decreased in size over the last hour from 1.5 inches to 1 inch. He covers the possibility that "the lights might flicker" if conditions get extreme enough, so people should be ready for that. And then he shows another weather map that shows cloud height. CLOUD HEIGHT! I hadn't planned on a hot air balloon trip down there any time soon, but at least now I'm prepared if I do.

I hate Strunk White, Idiot Weatherman.


Moose said...

I don't own a TV. (I haven't since about 1997, but that's another tale.) I get my weather info from aka the Intertubes site for the Weather Channel on yon boob cube.

At the top of the page there is almost always some huge bright red or orange banner. It will typically say things like, "Widespread Tornado Outbreaks!" "Earthquakes Predicted! Massive Damage!" "Godzilla Coming To Eat Nearby City!" The thing is, they rarely put an actual location in this dire warnings, and they're never for anywhere near me.

But the forecasts... Now, I used to live in Pittsburgh, PA. Pittsburgh's forecast is simple: It will be cloudy. Pittsburgh has more cloudy days per year even than Seattle [which, oddly, gets more rain]. When the rain does come in Pgh - and it will - the storms last for hours and the rainfall long and soothing.

Now I live in Swampsitucky. Here, the place is surrounded by swamps and tiny lakes. If it rains for more than a day everything floods out. Thunderstorms rarely last more than 15-20 minutes. [Those that last longer usually come with tornadoes. Whee!] Unlike Pgh, a hilly area that is actually a big valley, Swampsitucky is very flat. You can typically see storms coming from miles and miles away.

And still can't predict anything. Most days here, "Mostly sunny" will do fine. But on days when they think it might storm? It goes like this:

10 AM: Expect occasional storms starting around 1 pm. Outside: Sunshine, few clouds.

Noon: Expect occasional storms starting around 3 pm. Outside: Sunshine, few clouds.

2 pm: Expect occasional storms starting around 5 pm. Outside: Sunshine, few clouds.

4 pm: Expect occasional storms starting around 7 pm. Outside: Sunshine, few clouds.

6 pm: Expect dry conditions for the next six hours. Outside: 15 minute rain storms, with occasional rumble of thunder.

This happens at least once a week. It's hilarious.

Anonymous said...

Please tell me Strunk is actually Tom Skilling, master of hyperbole and one of the few who will actually spark wood at the mere thought of a weather event.