How’s Your Weather?

Weather.

It’s a conversation starter.

It’s a conversation stopper.

It’s one of the top three easy, no brainer, small talk topics:

1.  Do you have any kids?

2.  What do you do for work?

3.  How’s your weather?

Wow.  Really?  Stand back – those are some heavy topics.

What is it with weather questions? Why do you care?  Are you comparing it to your current weather situation?  Whose is better?  Are you jealous or relieved?

Take Florida for example.  A good friend of mine tells me about her weather on occasion.  In case you didn’t know already, warning, spoiler alert: it’s not all beautiful blue skies and balmy breezes.  Florida is actually the entrance to Hell’s Kitchen!

Luckily no secret password, knock or handshake required.  No discrimination here!

Florida, like much of the east coast in the summer time, is sweltering hot to the point of becoming one with your clothing.  Melting into your skin like cotton candy on your hands at the carnival.   No, I didn’t mean for my butt to eat my shorts and underwear but my clothing is melting into my skin and apparently there’s nowhere else to go but up.

Thank you but no, I am not sporting the latest fashion craze as seen in Nordstrom’s recent Look Book collection –  thanks for insisting it could be – if the Look Book designer was living in a cave and only eating bad mushrooms, maybe it could be.  But it’s not.

Oddly enough,  every day people all across the state of Florida become one step closer to shaving their heads.  Why?  What else would you do with a head crowned with a spiky Brillo pad?  Thank you humidity.

At the opposite end of the country is Alaska.  I live in Juneau, Alaska.  One of two things occur when people think of Alaska.

1.  It’s a tropical climate because it’s located off the coast of California.

2. Obviously, it must be cold and snowing all the time because DUH – it’s Alaska!

Winters in Juneau must be equivalent to living in Antarctica.  Wrong.  We’re actually very similar to Seattle, the only difference is we know how to drive in snow.

And don’t even get me started on how we NEVER get a peep of national news coverage for our regularly occurring  hurricane force winter winds.  I’ve seen roofs ripped off and small children picked up off the sidewalk.  But then again, we are Alaskans.  We simply go on with our lives and deal with it.  We’d probably be embarrassed if someone made an issue out of it.

Working in tourism I get asked weather questions all the time.  These would be the times when asking about the weather pretty much stops the conversation from moving forward:

“Will it be a nice day in Juneau when we visit on _________ (insert any day of the year here)?”

“If we take the tour in the morning, will it be raining?”

“Would it be better to take the tour in the afternoon so it’s sunnier?”

“What time of day does it rain?”

“Do you think it’s going to rain that day?”

“Is it better to visit in June or July?”

People.

Please.

If I could answer these questions, I wouldn’t be working in this industry.  Instead I’d be hosting my own reality show, foretelling futures, predicting the next President and American Idol winner.  I mean seriously, does it say “All Knowing Weather Goddess” on my forehead?  Not as of the last time I checked.   Should that suddenly change, I’ll let you know.

Lastly, what the hell is wrong with weather forecasters?  Have they not heard the saying:

It’s all fun and games until someone loses an eyeball….then it’s hey…. free eyeball!

Going out into a hurricane (or any hellish weather) to document the monster storm is as intelligent as those people who leap into the tiger cage at the zoo.  Seemed like a good idea at the time.  Again, see the quote above.  Duh.

Are television stations so desperate for ratings they’ll risk employees’ lives and limbs to get good ratings?  And how many camera men, sound techs and reporters are cursing one another under their breath for thinking THIS was a great idea?  Oh, wait.  I just figured it out!  It’s the fine print of the employment contract:  other duties as assigned.

Talk about reality shows.  You’ve got weather people along the shoreline breakers, on hotel balconies, hanging onto door knobs outside a random retail shop or best yet, in the surf itself.  My favorites are the rebels that take on the storm like a wild, wild, west gun slinger.  Sauntering  Stumbling out into the middle of Main Street…doubled over, trying to gather the last bit of energy to prove their righteous, badass self to the rest of the world.

I don’t know about you, but my bet is on the Main Street Gunslinger.

He’s going down in 3 – 2 – 1.

Winner, winner, chicken dinner…..he’s gone done….rolling down the street like a tumble-weed.  Look at that.  Just won me $20.

Note to self, when the wind is ripping your pants off – go inside.

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