What Kind of Weather Makes News?

Dear Diary,

While taking a break from the quasi-plagiaristic practice of ripping off my competitors’ reporting instead of doing my own, I decided that a sardonic attack on the news judgment of the region’s journalists whose work I routinely steal would make me feel good about myself.

So I did it.

Growing up in Chicago, I knew that a “partly sunny” forecast meant gray skies. And a “partly cloudy” forecast meant gray skies. That might have been because I never paid enough attention to anything around me to notice the months of oppressively hot, sunny days or the passing thunderstorms that painted fat bolts of lightning on a canvas of clouds as dark as night.

On rare occasions, there were days so cold that school was canceled, but there were no snow days because the city began salting the streets faster than a flurry could make its way to the pavement. I assume that you give a shit about that, Bay Area folks. The only one in my life who howled about lightning and thunderstorms was my family’s golden retriever. We thought of it as a peculiar personality disorder.

Judging by the fact that people who live in the Bay Area are interested in intense weather events that directly affect them, I can only assume that they also have peculiar personality disorders.

It’s taken me some time to adjust to the idea that meteorological commonplaces in the Midwest are big news here. I’m not sure why it’s taken me so long to adapt to a new culture. Perhaps it’s because I do not possess the traits of a journalist.

The Bay Area’s news outlets were consumed Wednesday morning with the most recent in the wave of storms that have rushed through the area this week. Monday and Tuesday’s weather gave the region whiplash with a succession of downpours followed by sunny skies followed by downpours and thunderstorms. That’s right. Whiplash, bitches. A potentially life-changing injury that can occur when somebody’s head is ripped violently from one side to another. That’s what the storms gave the region.

That was a preview of what has been happening Wednesday. Read more…


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