Friday, March 27, 2009

Stocking up and hunkering down

The big news here is that a major blizzard is on the way and it's going to hit this city but good. Forget Fargo and its 112-year flood; we've got a half-inch of snow on the ground and now it looks like some sleet. This could be rough. I expect to see CNN vans on every block of this city by the close of business today. It doesn't look too bad in the picture, but just you wait.

People here love bracing for a winter storm, particularly at this time of year when tornadoes are more likely than a foot of snow. I love it too, monitoring the situation from the relative safety of command central. I left the house just once today, to pick up some stew fixings at the grocery store. Evidently I was the last one to think about stocking up: there wasn't much left in the meat aisle and all they had for milk was some 2 percent that was very close to the sell-by date. Would have picked up some guns and ammo too, except you can't find that stuff around here either, what with Obama in the White House. I just hope the snow is deep enough to deter all the looters and cannibals.

Of course, it could happen that the blizzard doesn't quite meet expectations. The magnitude of events often correlates inversely to the hype about them beforehand; if the forecast is for a Force 5 tornado, for example, you can pretty much count on light wind and partly cloudy skies. Remember that Y2K catastrophe? Neither do I. Perhaps because it never came to pass.

Then again, this really could be the big one. We'll see. Whether we get two feet or two inches, I guess we can be grateful that it's only snow.

1 comment:

Ryan said...

Overestimation is the cornerstone of the meteorologist's career.

If it's bad as they say it is, then he can say "I told you so."

And if it disappoints everyone, he can state (with plenty of relief), "We got lucky."