Friday, February 17, 2006

So Much for the "Blizzard"

Well. The forecast was for "8 to 12 inches" of snow yesterday. And the snow did blow. We got snow.

Only, as I suspected, the meteorologists were once again up to their game of wild exaggeration. By evening yesterday, there were still good sized tracts of my yard where the grass was sticking up through the snow. Yes, we mow here in season. That's not what I call "8 to 12 inches" of snow.

Okay, there was drifting. The wind was blowing. But looking at snowfall reports from nearby towns, I'd say we got 4 inches of snow at most. Maybe less. Maybe actually more like 3½ inches.

What did I say?! What did I say yesterday???! "I think the forecasters love to exaggerate, and when they say '8 to 12 inches,' I'm really expecting more like 4 inches..." And I was right!

I feel sort of cheated. I was expecting a blizzard.

Okay, there were areas that did get a lot of snow. Up to the north of us, I understand some places did get 8 inches. Over in Wisconsin, I hear Madison did get 9 inches. Note, still nowhere that got anything close to the predicted "maximum" of 12 inches. Would somebody please show me a single location in all the history of weather forecasting that has ever actually gotten as much as the maximum forecast snowfall??!

But around here, it was a bust. The snow pretty much passed us by.

I wonder. Are the weather forecasters really that enamored of exaggeration, as if to boost their ratings on the local TV news? Or is it connected somehow with the need to avoid lawsuits— you know, better predict double to triple the snow you actually expect us to get, because if you don't predict enough, someone will slap you with a lawsuit... Yeah, paranoid, I know. But stranger things have happened in our wonderfully dysfunctional society in these latter days.

Meanwhile, tonight's forecast is for temperatures of 15 to 20 below zero. Hah! I'll believe it when I see it. I hear a forecast like that, and I wonder if it'll really even get down below zero...


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