The mornings are hot and humid, the afternoon storms have started to form (with the resultant accidents and rainy-weather traffic), and the nights are unbearable and muggy, 'hurricane season has begun'. I checked the calendar and it fits into the four seasons of Baton Rouge
(LSU Football, Mardi Gras, Crawfish, and Hurricane).
This year, like the past four years, starts without the sage wisdom of the king of hurricanes, Nash Roberts. The Weather Channel is no substitute, but at least I can watch fools stand in the rain and wind and tell me that it is rainy and windy (and that the local authorities have told them repeatedly to evacuate). But even without Nash's reassuring presence on TV, I still count June 1 to November 30 as my favorite time of the year, not for the hot weather, humidity, or the promise of West Nile, but for the clouds.
The hurricane clouds are one of the most organized sights on the horizon. Ever take a gander skyward as a hurricane prepares to make landfall? That 500-mile wide band of low-pressure clouds is one single organism, created out of the warm winds of Africa, nurtured by the warm waters of the Gulf Stream, then beaching itself like your mom in the black one-piece, sunning at Grand Isle Beach. What a disturbing image. But I digress.
Hurricane clouds are the most amazing sight to see the day before the storm. It is either the air pressure starting to drop ahead of the storm or the thought of spending the next couple days drunk, watching the wind rip through my apartment complex, but it always feels like Christmas Eve the day before the storm rips through town. And those clouds just pass overhead, spinning so fast you can see them rotate, as you finalize which hurricane party to do your keg stand at. (Try to learn from the 24 victims of the Richelieu Apartments from Hurricane Camille and at least party anywhere but in a flood zone.)
I think that the key to enjoying hurricane season is in the prep work. Call me a nerd, but buried in the back of my closet is a box with a couple gallons of drinking water, enough batteries to power my TV for a week, unscented candles that I could use if I ever get a woman over at my place, duct tape (one of the best inventions ever), and a manual can opener. (The electric can opener doesn't work when the power goes out, and how often do you think of the little things like that?) Getting this simple gear and storing it in your house when hurricane season starts allows you the pleasure of watching the chaos of all the others as they run around with 12 hours until landfall, trying to get the stuff you got two months ago.
So this year, as in years past, Dr. William Grey of Colorado State University makes the prediction of 12-15 named storms this season, with four or five major hurricanes occurring this year. But why Colorado State? It's like Mississippi State offering yearly earthquake predictions for California, and I bet they would be about as accurate. If CSU wanted to impress me, they would at least give us dates of storms and landfall predictions, but hey, I guess that's what psychics are for.
Take care, good luck, and remember 'at least we can see our natural disasters coming days in advance'.
Source: Holden R Wright~ RED SHT!CK MAGAZINE