The obstinate and peevish weather gods dumped a foot or two of additional snow on us the other night. I try to walk in other men’s shoes before cavilling about their behavior, but the weather pornographers have started naming every concatenation of snowflakes as if they were hurricanes, which is plenty imbecilic, but have apparently doubled down on their idiocy and named this particular one “Vulcan.”
I know they all went to public school, and then attended directional state college and majored in leaving Solo cups on someone else’s end table, but is everyone so illiterate that they don’t know who Vulcan was, and where he hung out his shingle? I’ve noticed a predilection in “educated” folks to use the exact opposite of the correct answer as the answer to any question. Not sort of wrong, ever. Totally, dreadfully, 180 degress wrong about everything. You could not come up with anything wrongerer to name a snowstorm, but here we are.
We didn’t shovel it yesterday, because the wind was raging at about 25 MPH, and the high temp was in the teens. When I got up this morning, it was 1F, but it wasn’t windy, so we had at it. I told The Heir to just shovel out a couple of cattle chutes for the cars, and leave it be. There’s nowhere left to put it anyway. At the bottom of the snow there’s three inches of ice, and a shamrock we left out there a month ago.
It has been 15 to 20 degrees below average every day for forever. I have to make all the heat in my house, so I keep a keen eye on the thermometer. Two thermometers, actually; I have a digital inside/outside model in my workshop on one side of the house, and there’s a very old mercury thermometer outside my office window on the other side of the house. I often check one against the other. If the sun is on one side of the house, you can always find a thermometer in the shade to read.
I abandoned my office last November, because I couldn’t hope to heat it. For a couple months, I typed everything on this blog and the others using the 32 inch television set in the living room as a monitor. I gave up on that scheme, and moved my desk into my bedroom, and write in there now. I still have a headache from December from squinting at the television, though. It’s been very hard to move the thermometer in the house to reach 65, and when we wake up in the morning, it’s often below 50 in our house, except in the childrens’ bedrooms. What I’m explaining is: I know what the temperature is.
We do not get cable television service. I do not watch broadcasts of weather reports, which I find bizarre, anyway. I look at websites, and look for hard information. I’ve noticed that the daily low temperatures reported by the various weather channels often are naughty in some way; misbehave in some manner; commit weather faux pas of some sort — whatever it is they’re doing, the weather channel doesn’t like it, and banishes these low temps to the Island Of Misfit Temperatures.
Every once in a while, to ensure I’m not imagining things, I take a screenshot of a random day, one that seems notable in some small way, and then I go back in a few weeks and see what the same people that reported that day’s temperatures have to say about it when no one’s looking. Here’s March 4th, 2014:
I checked this temperature with my two thermometers. It was right on the money. It wasn’t even a notable temperature this winter. It’s been twenty below quite a few times. I can tell you that no matter what sort of heating budget you have, and what sort of heating apparatus you’ve got, it’s deuced difficult to raise the temperature in one room in your house 85 degrees above outside temp, never mind a lot of rooms. So as I said, I have to pay attention and pick my battles.
If you were to return to the Weather Channel’s webpage today, and ask it what the low temperature was on March 4th, 2014, what do you suppose it would say? Please note that the sun was already up when they measured 16 below; it might have been colder just before I looked at it. But let’s take their word for it, corroborated by my two thermometers. It was sixteen below. Until it wasn’t:
Hey, look; there’s March 4th. Oh, dear. It says the observed low temperature was 4 below zero. The low temperature the Weather Channel reported in real time must have misbehaved. It must have a bockety Carnot engine, or a misshapen Boltzmann Constant, or perhaps it got pulled over and taken to the pokey after it passed a thermodynamic State Trooper in the breakdown lane going ninety. Whatever its infirmity or transgression, it was sent to the Island Of Misfit Temperatures.
I’ve also notice that the high temperatures are never sent to the Island Of Misfit Temperatures. They sit in the front of the bus and stick out their tongues at the lowly low temperatures. The high temperatures are the cool kids. They’re teacher’s pets.
Won’t someone have a care for the poor, shunned, lonely daily lows, banished to the Island Of Misfit Temperatures? Why if I was of a cynical mind, I might think that these poor low temperatures are likely to be offered the ultimate insult at the end of the year — I bet they won’t even let them sit for the class picture in the Global Warming yearbook, just because they’re banished to the climate reform school.
Won’t someone think of the chillren?