why southern weather makes no sense

In this video (below) there’s a person scheduling the weather for the South (meaning southern United States, from part of Arkansas to Florida). Attending this meeting are the four seasons: winter, spring, summer, and fall. What will happen as they try to figure out what kind of weather the South should have this year? (This is comedy, if it isn’t obvious.)

While that’s exaggerated, there is some truth to it. My favorite part is winter planning a few snowflakes to shut everything down. That actually does happen. I know people in the up north don’t get it, but in the South there are very few snowplows or trucks to salt the roads. Also, southerners typically don’t have much experience in how to drive in snow, so there’s that danger. But it’s all okay, because snow is so rare here, so it’s a special occasion. I have a friend that grew up in the South, then moved to Colorado. She said most people there take snow for granted, because they see so much of it. Many of the people there didn’t have any interest in throwing snowballs or building a snowman (or snow castles or snow monsters, which deserves its own post).

While there is a lack of snow most of the winter, it also means much of the winter is somewhat mild. It does get below freezing at times, but that’s usually just for a day or two, then it’ll be back to the 60s by the end of the week, so you can return to shorts and T-shirts. The only bad part is the middle of summer, where extreme amounts of heat and humidity mix together for a rather unpleasant atmosphere. But it’s just two months that are really bad. The same people made a video about that, too:

If you haven’t experienced southern humidity, then you might not get it. There are summer days where you walk outside and within seconds you are sweating. Sometimes it seems like sweating starts instantly. I don’t know how quickly the body can respond to the change in temperatures, but that’s not something I particularly want to research. (I will add that I am extremely thankful for air conditioning!)

There’s a saying in the South that if you don’t like the weather, just wait a day or two and it’ll change. That is mostly true, except for July and August, where there’s a 99% chance of it being hot and humid every single day. So for those months, the weatherman’s job of making the forecast is easy — really hot, with a 20% chance of thunderstorms, almost every day.

a snow hurricane

This post may seem contrived given the content versus the current news event of Hurricane Sandy combining with a cold front to bring potentially unprecedented devastation, but I assure you this was written a couple of weeks ago.  It’s ironic because we discussed a snow hurricane, but considered it just rambling because that’s impossible, right?  Hurricanes require warmth to survive, yet this one may produce wintry precipitation with this “100-year-storm” / nor’easter / frankenstorm.  Anyway, enough with the irony… let’s get to the rambling.

Recently we had discussed how to prevent hurricanes, and one of our regular readers had the idea of using some of our existing technology that we’ve already invented.  His suggestion was to use our snow machine to create snow in the Sahara Desert.  (Yes, we have built a snow machine from scratch.  Follow the link if this is news to you.)  Based on just those parameters, it sounds like a win-win scenario, but there’s a flaw in the slaw.  However, I am getting ahead of myself.  Let me first explain his idea.

Of course we’d have to scale up our snow making machine many times, but this can be done given enough funds.  But as you might have already surmised, such an idea has a few logistical issues.  Making snow requires water, which is typically scarce in a desert.  (Yeah, yeah, that goes without saying — it’s a desert.  Duh!)

So this “solution” might be impossible.  But for a moment, let’s imagine the possibilities.  Given enough snow injected into the hurricane-forming cycle, could it create a snow hurricane?  (A snowicane?  A hurrisnow?  We’ll have to work on the name.)  But imagine a snowstorm in the form of a hurricane that comes to the southern U.S. and dumps snow everywhere… that would be awesome!  (For those of you not familiar with the southern U.S., it rarely snows here.  It’s a BIG DEAL when we get accumulation on the ground — schools cancel (sometimes even at the mere forecast of snow), businesses close, and people play in the snow and make snow ice cream.  Here in Arkansas, we rarely get more than a couple inches a year.)  Although, besides the awesomeness of it, there would be collateral damages, and then we’d be working on a way to stop it, so perhaps we aren’t really fixing the problem with this “solution”.  But personally, I’d rather have several inches of snow than several inches of rain, so I’m all for it.

Perhaps we should apply science here instead of just rambling.  (What an idea!)  Hurricanes may start with dry desert air, but they have to accumulate moisture at some point.  If we could make that moisture cold enough and somehow get it to stay cold… well, this might be impossible as well.

This idea will require a professional-grade think tank.  Fortunately, the Buffet o’ Blog R&D (Research & Development) team is qualified for such a task.  What we’ll need is (can you guess?): a lot of money.  Now, I know, you’re thinking it doesn’t take money to think, and there’s some truthiness to that.  But a hurricane-scale snow maker isn’t gonna build itself, plus there are numerous logistical impossibilities to overcome, and we’d need time away from our jobs to accomplish this mission.  So if you want a hurricane made of snow, you’re gonna have to send us money.  There’s simply no other way.  Again, we can print off some official certificates saying you’re awesome for contributing to this world-changing project, and you’ll feel warm and toasty inside (except when you’re out playing in the snow).

If you have money but doubt our plan, we could draw up some diagrams and flow charts to send to you in exchange for funding.  🙂  We could also meet to discuss this over good pizza…  (Our R&D department usually meet while eating… we’ve found it’s good for morale and having good ideas.)

why it’s so hot

Here in Arkansas, it’s been over 100 degrees every day, and it was for much of June, too (which is not normal and ain’t right).  In case you’re wondering why, here’s a picture that was taken today.

Apparently the Earth is about 12 feet from the Sun now.  That must explain why it’s crazy-mad hot now.

how to describe this heat wave

The past few days have been so hot we’ve been trying to figure out how to describe it.  Wednesday it was 110 here with a heat index over 120, with lots of humidity.  I think that goes beyond crazy-mad hot.  Our local weathermen are running out of adjectives and phrases for the forecasts.

So we came up with a new heat scale:

* The day-star, it burns
* That ain’t right hot
* Crazy-mad hot
* Unbelievably stupid-hot
* Is this Arizona?
* This heat is inconceivable!
* Warmageddon
* Heatastrophe
* Hot Attack
* So hot that if someone says “Hot enough for ya?” you’re allowed to punch them.
* Did you replace my sweet tea with jalapeno juice?
* It feels like I’m on fire
* I’m on fire
* No really, I’m actually on fire it’s so hot