Why can’t we name storms in the Midwest?

August 26, 2011

All this about Hurricane Irene – which, to be sure, is a big storm, but made much bigger in the media because IT’S ON THE EAST COAST OH NO OH NO IT’S WHERE WE LIVE OH NO OH NO – makes me think of all the thunderstorms we’ve had roll through the midwest this summer with  50-75 mph winds, or more, and dumping 5+ inches of rain, or more, and not just once, but sometimes three times in the same week. I know, we got some coverage. But this this thing, because it can be tracked by satellite so easily (that space program expenditure that’s been such a waste of taxpayers’ money, you know) and gives the 24-hour news cycle something to talk about besides where Quadaffiduck might be hiding, seems to be blown out of proportion to we midwesterners. I mean, declaring states of emergency three days early? Closing airports and subways? Come on…we got pissed if the Metra trains were late here in the snowstorms last winter, and there was much grumbling because Rich Daley couldn’t wave his magic wand and get all those snowbound cars off of Lake Shore Drive in an instant. We only closed school for two days then!

I swear, those folks in the northeast can be such sissies.

Disclaimer: I know, you all aren’t sissies any more than all midwesterners are tough. Maybe not even most of you. Maybe I shouldn’t jump to conclusions based on media coverage. But hey, that’s what Uhmurrica is about, right? Jumpin’ to conclusions with no data to back it up?

(That was sarcasm, right there.)

Like Steely Dan’s “Deacon Blues,” I want a name for the big midwestern storms. (“I want a name when I lose. They call Alabama the Crimson Tide…” OK. Maybe not the best analogy.) Let’s name them after something scary, like Japanese movie monsters one year and Greek mythology the next or something. “Here comes Ghidrah, the three-headed storm monster!”

You gotta admit, it beats the hell out of Irene.


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