Carnes: Some names just don’t fit
As we begin the last week of August here in Happy Valley, the realization of summer coming to a close is a bit much to accept for some, but as the black hole of reality keeps inching closer and closer to the event horizon of truth, not even delusion can escape.
But enough about vaccine-related politics.
The National Weather Service named the latest big Atlantic storm Henri, and pronounced it “On-Ree” instead of “Hen-Ree.” This would make sense if they were attempting to have the names sound memorable or even perhaps European-pretentious (the purpose of which is beyond my limited level of comprehension), which would be fine and dandy because it’s their choice, but then why was the previous storm named Fred?
“We wasn’t afraid of Fred, but I’ll be danged if I ain’t a tad concerned about On-Ree,” was overheard on Fox News from a Floridian as they traveled home with the kids from the latest anti-vaccine, “Trump won” rally for Gov. Ron DeSantis.
Perhaps I made that up, but most of you immediately believed it right off the bat, right?
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Last Friday’s peak dusting made me curious, however, as to why we don’t name snowstorms, so imagine my surprise when I discovered the National Weather Service has been doing exactly that for nine years now.
Problem for us, however, is they only designate a name for a storm that either affects a population of at least 2 million or covers at least an area of 400,000 square kilometers, which is a little over 150,000 square miles in American-speak.
The entire state of Colorado is just a little over 100,000 square miles, and sure, the entire state has more than 2 million residents, but most big storms stay up here in the mountains with us.
Another problem is their insisted use of proper nouns in alphabetical order, as I think they should use adjectives instead in whatever order they deserve.
When the first major storm of this year was named Ana (pronounced “AH-nah” instead of the American “Ann-uh”), the name supplied zero information about the potential severity and possible ramifications of the storm, which turned out to be mild anyway.
They should have called it Anemic.
And that’s how we could start for the upcoming 2021-22 snowstorms, because most predicted storms end up being relatively anemic in terms of snowfall totals, regardless of the predicted amount.
In fact, back in the ’80s most every storm or even the slightest prediction of actual snowfall was usually announced as, “Anywhere from 4-8 inches is predicted tonight in our mountains.”
More often than not we received zilch, or in technical terms – bupkis — so maybe I should just drop the whole idea of naming snowstorms, as too many would have the same descriptive name.
But as for the vaccine-related political thingy I referred to, with Fox News now promoting a horse and cow dewormer as a vaccine alternative and possible cure for COVID-19, I just couldn’t reach down deep enough to again use it as a serious subject for yet another column.
Good grief, people, get the damn shot.
Richard Carnes, of Avon, writes weekly. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.