Tuesday, November 23, 2010

News Dorks

I don't know what it's like in other parts of the country but here in the Pacific Northwest we seem to go a little crazy over our weather stories.  The news media is practically orgasmic over the prospect of a potential white flake touching the ground.  It doesn't matter how much of the white stuff is falling, it's the top story, it's the teaser...but the kicker is that if it doesn't fall in Seattle it doesn't happen!  I take that back, if it happens in the mountains..hel-lo "the mountains" ... where it belongs, that is news, if it happens in the northern corners of the state, that is news.  If it happens in the South Puget Sound area, it just isn't newsworthy. 
The moment the radar shows the potential for the white stuff, let's just say 5 days ahead of the "storm", the media begins the countdown to Armageddon.  They send their teams out bundled up in bright red or yellow winter garb to stand outside by the freeway and look longingly up to the sky for the first flake.  "Yes, there it is!  And folks, it's STICKING...oh wait, now it melted...here comes another one..."  Those poor reporters out there all bundled up at 2:30 in the morning just to wait...and wait...and wait.  This year they added another amusing aspect to their reporting...they have a cameraman sitting in the car next to a driving reporter to take a drive down the roads and show the current conditions.  Hmmmm...DORKY!
Our local broadcasters have what they call a "Jam Factor", seriously who thought that one up, it is to report obviously, the jammed up action on the roads.  "The Jam Factor today is 6"!  6 out of what?  Is 6 good or bad?  It's all very confusing.  It is getting really ridiculous...mind you this reporting occurs whether there is a trace or a foot of snow. I love how they name the storms...Arctic Blast, January Chill, February Freeze.  Today a reporter was so proud of his demonstration of the "severity" of our storm.  He cleared off the top of one of those sidewalk newspaper stands and said:  "I'm going to put this black hat on top of this newspaper stand and when we come back you can see how much snow has accumulated on top of it".   I waited breathlessly for that demo to be over! 
I have to admit, I love snow days too, it's prettier than rain, but more treacherous to drive on.  I kind of like having an excuse not to go anywhere, stay in my PJ's all day and drink coffee.  I only like one day of it though, after that it needs to melt, my photo ops are over so let's get back to "normal".

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