Thursday, July 25, 2013

Do We Really Need Weather People?

Pat, weather people are ridiculous, right? We don’t need them, right?

Pat: Agreed.

Wait! Were you talking about the people who tend to be homely looking fellas or snappy looking women who pretend to know about what the clouds are going to do tomorrow, or did you mean people who had superpowers that enabled them to harness the unlimited forces of the earth’s meteorological elements, like Storm from X-Men?

If it’s the former, then, yeah...trash ‘em. But if it’s the latter...man, I wouldn’t mess with them.

Christian: I’m talking about the former. Those self-proclaimed clairvoyant types that pretend to have the ability to predict the future with their Doppler6000 or StormBuster1000 weather machines which we all know are just expensive wind chimes.

Now don’t get me wrong. The “weather” people that try and predict and follow hurricanes and tornadoes and such provide a valuable service. People’s lives are at stake in those cases. Those people are professionals. The weather people I don’t care for are the local boobs.

The nightly news seems to devote half of their time to the weather which is ridiculous considering they are just guessing. At their best they can tell you what the current weather is - which I can too without even using a wind chime - and then they are just guessing at the rest. It should take them all of 30 seconds to deliver the weather. But instead they display a bunch of fancy maps while waving their arms pretending like they have a clue as to what the weather is going to be like in a couple of days. They might as well be telling me the final score of the next ten Super Bowls.

I’m annoyed by the whole thing.

Pat: I gotta’ be honest with you, man...I don’t really think about weather much. Try not to, anyway. And I guess that means I don’t pay attention to weather people. I kinda’ just walk outside and hope I dressed right.

Come to think of it, I really don’t watch the news. Or even read a newspaper.

I think I might have turned into a hermit somewhere in the last ten years. Shit. I gotta’ get out more.

Christian: Well you might not want to go out right now because despite the fact that there isn’t a cloud in the sky the weather people are saying that it will be pouring down rain in the next ten minutes.

See how horrible that is? Granted, you can just ignore them. To be honest I don’t remember the last time I watched the news. Although I have been meaning to check in to see if that O.J. Simpson trial ever ended.

But even if you don’t pay any attention to them, doesn’t it irk you that there are people out there getting paid good money pretending to be soothsayers and society just accepts it?

Artist rendering of a weather person.

Pat: Well, I’d like to take you back even further. If you wonder who these yahoos on TV are, then consider: who the hell was Poor Richard and how did he know so goddamned much about everything at a time when I don’t think anybody knew anything except how to grow the food they ate and create countries?

And what, exactly, is an almanac?

I kinda’ think your weather-hatred might stem from him, so you might want to do a little research.

Christian: I googled who Poor Richard was and learned that it was the pseudonym used by Benjamin Franklin when writing his weather predicting almanacs. I did not know that.

So I then googled to see who Benjamin Franklin was and it turns out he was some kind of self-proclaimed wizard that claimed he could control electricity with his magic kites. Sounds like a complete lunatic if you ask me. But this just strengthens my argument that the whole idea of weather people is absurd.

Cuckoo. Cuckoo.

How are you not more outraged Pat?

Pat: Mmm...you gotta’ pick your battles, man. And I generally don’t battle with guys who can conjure lightning. Thunder, yes, but not lightning.

Don’t get me wrong...I’m with you. I think weather people are silly and unnecessary. I am slightly intrigued by the fact that the weatherperson demographic seems to be defined by inhumanly large and white teeth, though.

But I’m not gonna’ let ‘em get under my skin. They can’t use their Doppler 8 thingy to get under my skin, can they?

Christian: I doubt it since their dopplers always seem to have performance issues.

46 comments:

  1. I laughed all the way through this and it is something I totally agree with. I keep a coat and umbrella in car. Boy Scout training...nah just common sense and lack of trust in weather soothsayers. In fact most of the time I don't even care what the weather is going to do. Except the other night when the wind blew a tree top out and dropped it on my driveway. No one told me that was going to happen...

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    1. Exactly! If they're claiming they can predict the weather they should have know about that tree. They should be held liable or something.

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    2. Maybe we should suggest that weather people include arborist training in their job preparation.

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  2. We don't need weather people since the advent of weather apps for Smartphones, but I do believe that predicting weather cycles is important. I live in a country where 75% of our days are overcast, so we need to plan our social events very carefully to make the most of cloud breaks.

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    1. It's overcast here in Oregon about 75% of the time too. If I were weather man here I would just say it's going to be overcast everyday. Then I would at least be right 75% of the time vs. the 25% they are hitting now.

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  3. What addman said. I can pull out my cellphone right now, and on the welcome screen it says "75, sunny, 0% chance of rain." So until Al Roker becomes pocket sized and can travel with me anywhere I go, I'm afraid he's just outlived his fat, jovial usefulness.

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    1. He is! And I might suggest you look at his teeth. Creepily noticeable!

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  4. I don't know how to tell you guy this, but there's an entire channel devoted to nothing but the weather. Only the weather. All. the. time.

    I also remember something about that Franklin guy being able to store bolts of lightening in keys. I assume that's how he vanquished his enemies.

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    1. Jesus, this Franklin dude must have been quite the menace to society.

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    2. I think I remember watching the weather channel for an entire day back in college. A dare? A prank? Altered state? Not sure, but I remember feeling so connected to earth...via my couch anyway.

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  5. Two days ago there were flash flood warning throughout the state. I was working in my cubicle all day, and I didn't even realise it was rainging until I left to go home. I got proper drenched, I did.

    But, if I randomly have a desire to know the weather, I just use the internet. Hell, even my phone that doesn't have internet service knows the weather.

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    1. Exactly. Weather people are easily replaceable by machines. Instead of having weather people on, the news should just focus the camera on someone's smart phone.

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    2. "Proper Drenched" is going to be the name of my next band.

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  6. True story. I once worked for this obnoxious knob-heel who used to be a weather man on some local TV channel in the seventies. We once found an old photo online somewhere of him from that period with big fluffy hair and lapels longer than his memory. That photo was emailed to the entire company with frightful delightedness all round. And knowing that guy, if he's representative of the people who do the weather I just don't know dude...we're all being punked.

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    1. Another great point. There always seems to be something smarmy about weathermen. Which ins't surprising since they shill lies for a living.

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  7. Just throwing it out there- I'd like to be able to harness the weather.

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    1. Oooh how cool would that be! Because then you could be the best weather person out there since you could always just change the weather to what you predicted. Great idea!

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    2. Yes! Even better, you could use the weather as leverage to get what you want. "Chocolate croissant, NOW, or I think it looks a bit misty outside!"

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  8. Shoot, we live in the South. If you predict oppressive heat, humidity you can cut with a knife and fairly reliable late afternoon thundershowers for, let's say, 90% of the summer, you're dang near that yankee, the Long Island Medium. Poof I am a weathergirl. I should get my teeth whitened. And tell those people next to the creek to be sure they have flood insurance.

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    1. Be sure to also have big supply of snake oil for sale too.

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  9. I hate weather people. They are most likely the same women that did not get hired by "The Price Is Right" tv show, so now they've gotta wave their arms around somewhere.

    Just like Pat, I ignore the weather and pretend that I meant to wear a coat as a fashion statement when it is 85 degrees out (it LOOKED cold out, dammit).

    The region where I live (called, technically: Back East) had a hideous snow storm a few years back and EVERY ONE just refused to believe the weather people, but then were so shocked (myself included) when their cars were buried under 5 feet of snow for a week. I remember shaking my head and thinking, "How did this happen? and why didn't anyone warn me? and how did I forget my coat again today?"

    Great and witty writing, as always!!! Keep it up. (and grab an umbrella, just to be safe, you do live in the Pacific Northwest, no?)

    xxo
    MOV

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    1. Yeah were in the Pacific Northwest - or the PacNo which nobody says but me - so yes indeed we get our fair share of rain. We don't carry umbrellas since we have just grown accustom to being wet all the time.

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    2. Yeah...we kinda' see umbrellas as proof of wimp-dom. We point, make fun, and then curse our wet clothes once out of the rain.

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  10. I live in Southern California where the weather forecast is: Sunny. Sunny. Sunny. Then everyone freaks out and forgets their behind-the-wheel training as soon as the first raindrop hits their car.

    Does the rest of the country suffer from the same Weatherman/Weatherwoman symptom of really cliched names? Our big weatherman is Dallas Raines. There's probably a "Sonny" and a "Wendy" somewhere.

    And since you brought up he weatherman subject, why the heck are they called "meteorologists?" It sounds like they're trying to predict the weather beyond the earth's hemisphere where weather is noticeably absent.

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    1. Amen! "Meteorologist" always makes me think of Mickey as the Sorcerer's Apprentice. Come to think of it, THAT would make for a weatherperson I'd enjoy watching. Wizard hats!

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  11. At this point counter-point point point in human evolution, the only people who sacrifice precious minutes from their limited supply to watch the local news are the elderly. And if there s one thing we know about the elderly, besides waiting for the mailman, there is nothing more important to them than the weather.

    Someday, some brilliant TV executive is going to create a channel devoted solely to weather and it will be a smashing success...nah, that's actually a stupid idea.

    The weather folk have developed their own brand of excitement in naming the fancy gizmos that help them determine that it may indeed rain today. The Doppler Pinpoint Accuratron 8000 could never be wrong with a name like that. And, who among s hasn't tried to drop in "future cast" into a conversation at least once?

    You hit the nail on the head with this on - enjoyed immensely!

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    1. Know what I want? A channel that shows 24 hours of old people watching 24 hour weather channels!

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    2. Also, "SmackOfHam" is going to be my next band name, after "Proper Drenched". That cool?

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  12. All I need is to know what the temperature is going to be and whether I'll need to take an umbrella tomorrow, both of which could just be printed in the corner of the screen. Weather people are competely useless.

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    1. Agreed. But it's great job training for, well...umm...

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  13. In Ireland we don't need weather people we all know the weather will be unpredictable and most likely it might rain!

    Let it be a surprise to people, well unless there is a storm on the way or tornado and uh other stuff.

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    1. It's nice to know weather people are a world wide problem.

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  14. I hate the weather and the predicters thereof (fancy word). I hate talking about the weather too, but now that I work with the public (poor them) and have to make small talk with strangers ALL THE TIME I find myself talking about the weather because it is the easiest most generic of human exchanges.

    Please, in your next investigative post, you and Pat should find a better conversation currency for strangers. It might get you the Nobel Peace Prize.

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    1. We've assigned some of our investigation interns to look into it. If we come up with something we'll let you know.

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  15. A better prediction is what you are going to have for dinner. I'd watch that sucker all the time. Then I wouldn't have to go rummage around in the cupboards figuring it out. I'd just listen to the guy tell me it's probably enchilada night at the Murphy's house tonight. I bet loads of people would go for that one.

    Or they could predict how much gas is in your car before you run out. Oh wait. That's been done. They could predict who's calling on your...urk. Done. Ah. They could tell you what's hoppin' at your neighborhood Wally World. Doh. It's always freak night there. Never mind. I'm sticking with the dinner predictor.

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    1. Predicting what's for dinner? I like that. We probably wouldn't even need to retrain weather people to do it either. All we would need to do is change what's on the green screen behind them from weather maps to dinner plates. They can sill go ahead and wave their arms around like the currently do.

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  16. When I think of meteorologist, I think of the dude standing outside watching Haley's Comet. Or Hale Bopp or whatever other one is out there once in a while. And it seems like they'd have the shortest burst of activity in a job EVER (except for the burst of activity my kids provide when it's room cleaning time).
    The conversation goes like this:
    Wendy Puffnspit: Yeah, I'm a meteorologist.
    Dick Stormdrain: Really? What do you do?
    Wendy: Ur...uh...nothing much now that there aren't any comets readily available. I'm waiting for a really big one to come along.
    Dick: So what do you do meanwhile?
    Wendy: Oh I go outside and look up. If something is coming down, I go tell people about it and they pay me. What about you?
    Dick: I used to do that. Then I got a real job. I predict the outcomes of football games.

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    1. Totally. And since there are really only two meteors (the two you mentioned) then we really only need two meteorologists right? The rest should be fired.

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  17. weather.com has so many numbers and percentages that it took me awhile to realize they are correct nearly never! They dazzled me with pictures and scary (albeit outdated) bylines!

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  18. I shared you on Facebook...as usual. The windchimes remark was so good. I literally laugh out loud. None of that fake LOL shit. Real honest to god snorting and bajawling.

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    1. Thanks Julie! You know who does a lot of fake LOLing? Weather people.

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  19. I'm of the opinion that the weather would be just as accurate or inaccurate if they just had a giant Wheel o' Weather, much like the Wheel of Fortune. You spin and whatever you land on is the weather. Simple. Heck, we wouldn't even need a meteorologist anymore!

    Thank you kindly for linking up with us at the Humor Me Blog Hop!

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    1. And I much rather watch a spinning wheel than weather people talk while waving their arms around. Thanks for hosting the hop!

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