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The Best of Stilltalkintv: Weather Scares

 

 

I am taking some time off in New York City this week and unfortunately (or fortunately) missed the coverage of the snowstorm in Western New York. But I would guess I have seen and heard much of it before. So I have decided to reprise a February column in what I will call The Best of Stilltalkin.com. I hear that — unlike in February — the weathermen were more accurate.  There was a considerable amount of snow this time but that it wasn’t that scary because it was handled well since we live in Buffalo after all. You decide how much of what I wrote almost a year ago about being scared by meteorologists was pertinent this time around.

 

I set my alarm a little early this morning because I was 4 Warned Tuesday night by Pope Don Paul, Channel 2’s Kevin O’Connell and Channel 7’s Aaron Mentkowski that things were going to be a little messy on the morning commute.

As I write this in my bed in a northern suburb, I can look out a window and see there isn’t much to worry about.

I realize it might be sleeting, snowing or raining elsewhere in Western New York and the three weather guys might end up being right before the day is done.

But as I write this, I almost wonder if they tried to scare the heck out of viewers Tuesday night to drum up viewership during the February sweeps when good weather is being partly blamed for diminishing local news ratings.

After all, we live in Western New York. Snow, sleet and rain happens. We don’t really need to be frightened at the top of the news that it might be coming in minor doses in the Southern Tier, since many viewers probably can’t spell Chautauqua.

When we hear the morning commute might be messy, we’re generally thinking about the commute to Buffalo.

Channel 2’s O’Connell led the fear factor Tuesday by leading the 6 p.m. and late night newscasts with the winter weather advisory that supposedly was going to make the morning commute difficult. But by 10 p.m. and 11 p.m., Paul and Mentkowski followed so I set my alarm 30 minutes earlier than normal.

I did so reluctantly after my experience last weekend. I left my home early Friday to drive for seven hours south to visit two of my children. I was happy to leave town to see them and to get out of town before the predicted snows arrived on Saturday.

On my Sunday drive back home, I wondered if the neighbor who I share a driveway with had used his snow blower to clear a path so my car could make it to the garage.

As I neared Western New York on a beautiful, sunny day, it was clear that wasn’t going to be a problem. There wasn’t any snow.

I finally asked a dental hygienist Tuesday if the snow ever came and melted. She said the weathermen called the whole thing off and there was just a dusting.

So I suppose I was 4 Warned that these guys are about as accurate as the political experts analyzing the Republican presidential campaign and I shouldn’t worry so much when the local newscasts lead with weather scares.

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me three times and you better snow-blow my driveway if the white stuff ever arrives this winter.

OK, it is time to get out of bed and put the extra 30 minutes to good use. Maybe I’ll find a map and learn how to spell all the towns in the Southern Tier and learn where they are exactly.

pergament@msn.com

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6 responses to "The Best of Stilltalkintv: Weather Scares"

  1. bruce says:

    Actually, none of it is pertinent. The forecasters did an amazing job predicting this far in advance, nailing the arrival time, and nailing the amount of snow. Sometimes they do get it right, ya know. So I guess don’t let the facts get in the way of your attempt at humor…

  2. bruce says:

    Alan, your unwillingness to post my previous comment pretty much cements how much credibility you have on the topic of the media’s role in weather forecasting.

  3. chuckp says:

    I think this time they generally had it right. But I still propose a new drinking game…..every time a meteorologist on Ch. 4 says the words (or variations of) “maybe”, “possible”, “might”, or “could”, take a drink and see how quickly you get drunk. Hint: you WILL be drunk before the weather segment is over.

    Also, I don’t know how I survived for the last 40 years of my life without the 4 Warn red ribbon on their set.

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