Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Who I blame

The snowstorm predicted in our area turned out mostly to be a bust. My suburb got maybe 2 inches of snow and Philly proper got virtually nothing that stuck. The roads are clear. It is perfectly safe to drive around our area. Because of all the hyperventilating about the "storm of the century" throughout the day yesterday, last night a lot of local schools announced they would be canceled today. Which meant that parents like me were facing a snow day childcare issue this morning with no weather-related reason to stay home from work.

A lot of my friends, both those with kids and those without, are pissed off at "the weatherman" for telling them there would be a big storm when there was not. But keep in mind that predicting the weather is really really hard. Predicting with perfect accuracy is currently impossible. I'm sure  meteorologist would much rather be right, so they do their best based on the measurements and models they have. It doesn't always work because there are too many factors that go into any weather system. They still do a much better job than weather predictors have done at any other point in human history. So lay off them.

The people to heap scorn on are the newscasters and their enablers on social media who hyperventilate any time they hear the word "snow." Not every storm has to be the one "of the century" or a "-mageddon". It is possible to tell people we might get a lot of snow the next day without treating it as it might be the end of civilization as we know it. Snow is actually normal weather in this part of the country. We can treat it like a normal thing, even while telling people there is a chance that the snow might pile up and disrupt travel for a short period of time. It doesn't have to be anything scary or alarming. It can just be something to take into account.