Cloudy With a Good Chance

It’s just a couple days to Christmas and that means children and romantics are asking will there be a White Christmas this year. Today’s weather people can pretty much tell you within one or two percentage points if it will or if it won’t wherever you are. It wasn’t always that way.

I remember many years ago there weren’t weather forecasts on the evening news. There were weather reports. TIROS I became the first weather satellite to watch over the Earth’s climate conditions when it was launched in 1960. Before that the weather segment was what happened, not what to expect. Probably the only weather men willing to take a risk and “predict” tomorrow’s weather were those in San Diego, or perhaps Phoenix, where you could say it’s going to be warm and sunny and get it right almost every day. Where I grew up the weathermen spoke of today’s weather in the East being pretty much what yesterday’s weather was in the MidWest. And if one wasn’t sure, it never hurt to predict “partly cloudy.”

One December back then we were closing in on Christmas Day and it looked like the only White Christmas we were going to see was the movie of the week special presentation. It was all but confirmed when the reigning weather champ said out loud, on TV, for all the world (or at least the local metro area), the next few days before the the holiday would be at best – “partly cloudy.”

I believe that was two days before Christmas and we kids sighed our sighs that even if we got new sleds (which we never did, now that I think about it), we’d not be racing downhill on them. So off to bed we went. And we woke up the following morning to about 6 inches of fresh fallen snow! Woohoo!! (Or Yippee!! as we would have said back then.)

Later that day on the local evening newscast the regular anchorman introduced a fill-in weatherman for the evening weather report. “And tonight we have John Smith filling in at the weather desk. Joe couldn’t make it in today. He’s still at home shoveling the partly cloudy off his driveway.”

So for all of you wishing for a White Christmas this weekend, I wish for you as much partly cloudy as your driveways can hold. Yippee!! in advance.

That’s what I think. Really. How ’bout you.

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