Hurricane Irene, or how the media attempts to inspire panic by taking Mother Nature in vain.

By all accounts there is a hurricane progressing toward the eastern seaboard of the United States. It also appears this will be the first major storm to make a direct hit on New York City since Hurricane Gloria (a category 2 hurricane) did so, back in 1985. Notice I said major storm, vice hurricane. Though all reasonable precautions should be taken, and if you know your particular neck of the woods is prone to flooding, it would be wise to seek higher ground before this storm makes such a move impossible. A major hurricane, one of category 4 or 5 status, would be just that, a major hurricane. Such is currently not the case with Hurricane Irene. While I am pondering this post, Irene is actually decreasing in strength, though this may change … hurricane prognostication is not an exact science, the whims of God and Nature are still outside the purview of even the best, and well intentioned weather guessers.

And that is my point. The media, specifically the various “weather channels” and 24hr news outlets, would have you believe at least one of the four horsemen of the apocalypse is going to be making a personal showing, atop his steed at the forefront of the approaching malstrom, as it makes landfall in the States, sometime this weekend. Inform the public at large, give the facts, provide as honest a near term forecast as possible, and that should be the extent of it. Throwing out worst case scenarios, speculation(s) based on an untold number of computer models, and or your inner id’s demand for sensationalism, does not help anyone.

Indeed, there are many who are ignoring all the warnings, both good and ill, staying home and shoring up for what may be coming. And to some extent, who can blame them. After all human nature is not all positive. Granted there are those who, based on personal experience, a strong understanding of their immediate environment (home and surrounding area), and a strong sense of self, will elect to wait out the storm. They will most likely be successful. There are others, many others, who fail to meet any one, or all of the criteria which their successful fellow traveler has met. So, they will find themselves, quite possibly at the mercy of Mother Nature, before the current storm completely passes them by (or perhaps very shortly there after). Of course there are those who “just don’t care”. Ironically, they are much like the drunk who gets into a collision, many times escaping with little physical injury (Or is completely splattered. They seldom, if ever find the middle ground.), and so will escape the storm with little worse than a hang over.

So for those of you who seek something to balance the scales of sensationalism a bit. Being well aware of the danger, but knowing literally which way the wind blows (and can convert from miles per hour to knots per hour). Along with those who “just don’t care. I have come up with an alternate “scale” for rating hurricanes. Instead of Categories 1-5, based on sustained wind speed inside of the storm … I give you the “Beer-hord Scale”

It breaks down as follows.

Tropical Depression/Storm = 2 six packs
Tropical Storm/Cat 1 Hurricane = 2 six packs up to 1 Case at Cat 1
Cat 1-2 Hurricane = 2 Cases
Cat 2-3 Hurricane = 2 Cases up to 4 cases when reaching Cat 3
Cat 3-4 Hurricane = 1 Keg
Cat 5 Hurricane = 2 Kegs

This also helps to validate the shelves being emptied, at a terrifically high rate of speed, from most grocery and liquor stores, as a given approaching storm becomes more of an immediate treat.

The picture below, should also be implemented to help said stores prepare for the onslaught of potentially storm ravaged customers, in need of liquid courage.

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Filed under Humor, News of the Day, Scribbles

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