Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Looks Like (Dallas) Rain(es)

I came bursting into the Unbelieva-base in a huff: "Hey, Jeff!"

I heard him call from somewhere down the hall: "What?"

"Where are you?"

"I'm in the control room with the Unbelieva-Babes, eating some whipped potatoes ..."

Sure enough, there he was. "Oh ... there you are. (Hello, Ladies!) Holy crap chips! Have you been outside today? It's insane out there! There's some really weird weather going on!"

"I know."

"I went out first thing this morning and caught the most gorgeous sunrise ..."

"Nice ..."

"Then, about ten minutes later, there was this freak hailstorm!


"Come 7:30? Snow! But just for a couple minutes ..."

"You don't say ..."

"Strangely, a clap of thunder stopped the snow cold in its tracks ..."

"Wow ..."

"The rest of the morning? And right into lunchtime? Nothing but baking hot sunshine."

"Imagine that."

"It didn't last though. There was an hour straight where it decided to rain ..."

"Huh. I bet there was flooding."

"Yeah! Flash flooding, even! In Stiletto Flats! Can you believe it?"

"Strange ..."

"Weirder still, it was beautiful the remainder of the afternoon. Sunny as all get out."

"That is weird ..."

"Yeah ... but then? Out of nowhere? A tornado hit!"

"Jeez ..."

"Oh ... it gets better. The tornado lasted just a blink of an eye. The rain came back after that ... then it turned into a plague of frogs! All in the space of 25 minutes after the sunshine dissipated ..."

"You know," Jeff confessed "I knew all those things already ...."

"... and yet ... you let me drone on and on about it."

Jeff shrugged.

"You know what this means?" I asked him.

In unison we said: "The X-Weathermen."

We paused dramatically to take it all in. Well ... I did, anyway.

"You have any idea where Clark is at?" I asked.

"Yeah ... he's out washing the 'Vette. All those turns in the weather, you know how particular he is about keeping the car clean. I would have loved to have been there when the frogs came down and splattered all over it. He must have freaked out ..."

Aaahh Freak out! Le Freak ... C'est Chic" I commented and danced out of the room waving at the ladies.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

In every corner of America, there's television news. Specific channels devoted to the news of the day, available morning, noon and night.

If there's news? There's certain to be weather reports. And along with them? The men and women who cover weather reports:

The Weather Reporters.

In my old stomping grounds - the Los Angeles area - there have been many of weather reporters through the years. Fritz Coleman ... Dallas Raines ... Johnny Mountain ... and good old George Fischbeck to many a few.

Year in and year out, they've been trusted by the adoring public to bring their unique brand of flavors and personalities on what tomorrow holds in store for us weather-wise ...

Fritz Coleman

"Weatherman" (*cough, cough*) ... comedian ... but not a meteorologist.

He's a comedian. (Really. He's done the comedy club circuit for ages.) Like many popular weather anchors, he serves as a "weather reporter" ... not a meteorologist. Why? He doesn't have a degree. (Underlying translation: Sounds suspicious.)

Dallas Raines

The fact he looks like a deranged David Lynch doesn't help Dallas' cause ...

Chief meteorologist certified by the American Meteorological Society. Bachelor of Science from Florida State University where he studied broadcast journalism and earth science with emphasis on meteorology. Daily News People's Choice Award for Best Weatherperson, an American Cancer Society Man of the Year, possesses a Golden Mike Award for Best Weathercast and an Associated Press Award for Best Weather Segment. Raines is popular for his signature "moves" during his forecast stints such as the "Dallas dip", the swirl, the fist pump and the golf swing. (Underlying translation: Sounds suspicious.)

Johnny Mountain

"Johnny Mountain" ... ??? Really? Tell me that isn't a stage name ...

Likeable and "Average Joe-ish" to a fault. He was recognizable on various Los Angeles stations from 1978 until his retirement in 2010 as part of "as part of a 'restructuring' of KCBS Channel 2 news operations." (Uh huh. Underlying translation: Sounds suspicious.)

Dr. George Fischbeck 

Never, ever underestimate the grandfatherly demeanor ...

And then? One of the most popular meteorologist ever to grace a cathode ray tube: Dr. George Fischbeck. Originally an Albuguergue, New Mexico television weatherman in the early 1960s, Fischbeck made his Los Angeles presence known in 1972 when he moved to KABC-TV becoming a staple of the local Eyewitness News. He retired in 1997.

(Yeah ... that goofy, loveable personality will only get you so far. But ... what's beneath that exterior? What's he truly thinking? That's what we really want to know. In other words: Sounds suspicious.)

So ... what do all these guys have in common? (Beside being weathermen I mean?)

Let's put it this way: How would you hold up if it was your job to report something to the masses that turned out to be correct only one-fifth of the time?

Want a little perspective? Imagine yourself in school, you take a test and you come up with less than 70% on it. That means you're barely staying afloat with a grade of "D" academically.

A weatherman's success rate? That one-fifth marker works out to a mere 20%. It doesn't matter what angle you're looking at it from, that's a damned depressing statistic from a career standpoint. Would you be satisfied at your current job if everything you did worked out only 20% of the time? 

Bottom Line: There's ample evidence pointing to the possibility of a secret society of weather people (whether or not they are "official" and hold meteorological credentials or are simply on-air personalities who love the spotlight) who, when you look at the profession they've chosen, could very well be using their vast experiences to initiate mayhem in the air up there. And world wide ... not just in Stiletto Flats.

Is there really something sinister going on? (Frogs just don't fall out of the sky, you know.) Let's see what Clark comes up with  ...

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