Thursday, September 13, 2007

'urricane 'umberto

So what's up with this thing that popped up and pushed in through here yesterday? In all my years of living on the Gulf Coast of Texas (although only a few of those I was actually paying attention to the weather, granted), I have never seen something come up so fast and so hard.

Apparently, the meteorologists were caught flat-footed, too. But that didn't keep them from hyping and inflaming everyone. I am surprised that an evacuation wasn't called for. Not that anyone would have actually gotten on the road, but still, they could shame everyone for not caring about safety and the lives of all the innocent children and pets.

Where I work, the crisis turned out to be a drill to see how everyone would work within all the departments in the event of a real hurricane, tsunami, earthquake or nuclear holocaust. We seem to be fairly satisfied that the dry run came off smoothly. And actually stayed dry!

The weather people did get a chance, albeit short notice, to dash down to High Island and Bolivar to cash in on the slashing winds and pelting, horizontal rain. It was almost worth it to see Wayne Dolcefino buffeted by the wind. And believe me, it takes quite a bit of wind to buffet Wayne, IF you know what I mean. Good Morning America's Sam Champion (made-up name if I ever heard one) was "riding out the storm" in League City. He had a phone-in to the show, and they ran footage of Wayne in the middle of filing a near-unintelligible report through the howling wind and stinging rain. At one point, he just gave up and stumbled off camera. But Sam sat in a motel room eating Cinnabons and drinking cappuccino acting like he was braving the storm. And Diane Sawyer was complicit in ignorance, lapping up his story like a typical newshound.

'umberto was really a strange animal, though. To develop and charge ahead so quickly, I think even the old-timers (me) were surprised. But we weren't surprised by the media feeding frenzy.


the photoSmith said...

wayne's performance was classic. i think it was probably one of the better, "hey everyone look at me as i risk my life in hopes that the national networks will pick me up" displays of media hype, and you're right it really takes some strong winds to knock around ole wayne. I wish I would have seen Sam's performance, nothing like making something out of nothing, kinda like the reporter who was in a canoe trying to make it look like the water was deep only to her demise someone walks by, showing america that the water was only ankle deep. Oh the media and all their hijinks....

aA said...

Sam was not even on camera, he called in on the phone! probably not even wearing pants.

Anonymous said...

Wayne may be smarter than he l**ks for sure....he must know how Dan Rather got his start. You know we can always count on Dolce to deliver the performance. ;)