Comments on life, the universe and everything from an aging Sixties survivor.

Location: Massachusetts, United States

Ummm, isn't "about me" part of the point of the blog?

Friday, August 26, 2011

Ghoulish meterology

Some years back, I took a weather course. The instructor had a good friend with the NWS, then in Boston. He arranged a tour of the facility, showed us the synoptic charts tracing the development of the Perfect Storm, then our latest and greatest weather disaster. The best moment was when he looked at that day's synoptic chart, showed us how it could presage a blizzard and how it probably wouldn't. Then he got a purely evil look and said "but I LOVE it when things fuck up!"

So do I.

It is much easier to view weather disasters with equanimity when one grew up with electricity and running water as seasonal luxuries. In this house, we keep a fair supply of food around, gas lanterns, batteries, etc., because hurricanes are just one of the amusements Mother Nature throws at us on the coast. The only thing that makes me sullen is that I can't find the kerosene lamps, which are in the proverbial safe place. Bad idea, that.

Hurricane Irene has as its best feature that it's smacking New York and Washington around. Let's recall that Manhattan, which has been destroyed on film a couple of dozen times, has experienced just four (or is it five?) hurricanes in the last 160 (or is it 200?) years. In that time Gotham has become the media capital of the universe. Now the disaster is--potentially at least--on the medias' doorstep. This makes a difference in the quantity (if not the quality) of coverage.

The odds of an evacuation order here are vanishingly slim, but we ain't going in any case. There's too much to see, for one thing. For another, Miss Annie, at age 23, has made it very clear already that she's not going. We can't leave the old lady behind.

Once upon a time, local boaters exercised an admirable freemasonry in the face of disaster. According to reliable (but single-sourced) report, that is no more. Yesterday's report was that boaters stacked up at the town's sole state-of-the-art launching ramp were fighting over who had what priority to haul out. This is what happens when you put the price tag of your toy ahead of the goodwill of your aquatic neighbours.

Stay tuned. We wait for the fun.

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Blogger massmarrier said...

I wonder how they're doing on the GBH weather station. We visited a couple of times and found serious climate geeks. They had huge Mt. Washington level pride in being there when the storms were stormiest. Meh.

7:45 pm  

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