IF YOU’RE JUST starting out and looking for a career, consider the fact that meteorologists get away with murder. Unlike doctors who must carry tons of malpractice insurance, or pharmacists who must live with guilt if they kill someone with the wrong prescription, or plumbers who get called back to fix a mistake, weather forecasters can screw up, which they do all the time, and nobody says a peep. They don’t get sued, or fired, or for all we know even chided by their bosses. Their mistakes are never mentioned. Nobody says, “Hey, sorry you all had to evacuate your homes, that tornado (or avalanche or mudslide or hurricane or blizzard or thunderstorm or even just a rainy afternoon) never showed up. My bad.”
Despite evidence to the contrary, we all believe the application of science and technology to predict the state of the atmosphere for a given location is virtually foolproof, and certainly reason enough to cancel the company picnic or move a wedding party indoors. Ha!
Case in point: Last night as I was drifting off to sleep, comfy under my covers and one blink away from dreamland, I remembered the evening forecast that promised it would begin raining in the middle of the night and that rain would turn to sleet and freezing rain, encasing my car in ice by morning. So I hauled myself out of bed at one in the morning, groped my way downstairs, dragged on a pair of boots and trekked outside into the cold night in my bathrobe to pull my car into the garage. I was not happy, but I was thankful to have dodged an ice bullet the next morning. Only the next morning showed up dry as a bone and sunny, with nary a cloud or a raindrop in sight.
Pisses me off. Who do I call?
Andrea Rouda blogs at The Daily Droid.