The Weather Hype Machine

I’ve written before about how social media and the internet has managed to trivialize words and ideas.

Well this past spring my wife and I purchased a home in warm sunny Florida.

We couldn’t move down there right away.  We had twenty five years worth of stuff in our northern home and it sold quicker then anticipated.  But still we had to wait a couple of months to get everything done and be ready to move.

We bought in March and moved in September which meant I was stuck up north while it was hurricane season down south.

I’m a worrier so you can only imagine my concern with the weather and a house I can’t see.

Of course I checked the weather websites every day to see what’s going on.

One weekend a tropical storm developed and hit north and west of the area where our new home is located.

Prior to the formation of this storm the forecasting sites were not only predicting its formation but it’s path as well.  The initial predicted path went right over where my house is located and they talked about six to twelve inches of rain, flooding, severe thunderstorms and tornadoes.

Obviously storms can be a very serious thing and are not to be taken lightly but gee whiz they had mass destruction already to go and nothing had even developed.  They were showing the path of something that wasn’t even there.

The storm did develop and it brought some soaking rain and some on shore flooding but it was on the other side of the state.  The actual path of the storm was well north of their prediction but I’m not complaining.

However until it actually developed and moved north I was a wreck imaging all the harm that could come to our house before we had a chance to spend one night in it.

The weather websites plan worked.

I was clicking their sites throughout the day and into the night.  I let myself get caught up in the hype.

This got me to thinking about the weather hype machine.

I’m most familiar with the weather hype up north, the hype for snow.  They do the same thing up north.  They immediately talk about worst case scenarios.  They may have several computer models with different predictions but they’ll always be sure to tell you about the worst case model.  They’ll use the prediction that gets them the most viewers, the most clicks.

I remember when I was a kid the news broadcast had a “weatherman” who gave us the


The good old “Weatherman”

weather report”.  It was usually the last two of three minutes of the half hour news broadcast coming right after the sports report.

Now we have “meteorologists” who are part of the “Storm Team” who operate out of “Storm Central”, like they are part of some superhero League of Justice protecting you from the evils of changing weather.


Danger, danger, we all could die. Stay tuned to see what danger is lurking in the skies, right after this word from our sponsor.

We need this “STORM Team” (make sure you emphasize STORM when you say it) to tell us about a sunny pleasant day with temperatures in the seventies, but stay tuned you never know when some evil “STORM” may decide to show up.

Having all the new weather predicting technology is nice.  I like the radar, so even though the sun is shining I can double check to make sure it’s not going to rain as I am half way through mowing my yard

I miss the old days when the radio announcer stuck his head out the window to tell you it’s partly sunny and then checked his window thermometer to let you know the temperature.

Nowadays this weather stuff is serious business.  I mean serious cash business.

And like anything else it’s corrupt.

I just need to listen and then curtail my concerns with some common sense.

© Otis P Smith and About the Groove, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Otis P Smith and About the Groove with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

One thought on “The Weather Hype Machine

  1. Pingback: Lessons From A Hurricane – About The Groove

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