Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Stormy Weather

My mother's house was destroyed by a tornado
102 years, to the day, after the great
tornado that destroyed the town.
I have this observation to share on this morning when there is nothing for me to do but stay home and hope that I am personally spared from the impending destructive weather.
That observation being that the stability of the climate and weather has become an issue. I am in my early sixties and I remember a time in my living memory when rain in the summer months was moderate to scare, but in the late eighties and early nineties, I started noting a dramatic increase in precipitation.
Northeast and central Alabama have an abundance of streams that draw white water enthusiast; I have been such-a-one myself, so I know the drill and have become adept at noticing the water levels and cycles of rain and all of that has changed dramatically in the last thirty years. When I was a young man, no one went canoeing in Alabama in the summer and now they do. Frequent and heavy precipitation is a thing now.
I first noticed it in the late eighties and early nineties and it had been predicted by another new thing, climate modeling, scientist telling us that as ice melted more free water would fall as rain.
And as the years passed another new phenomenon was noted, an alternating cycle of severe droughts -- -- in 2007 and 2016 -- -- the two most severe droughts since the beginning of record keeping, the later drought being even more severe than the former, These were both destructive and unprecedented events;  I'm pretty sure my baby blue hydrangeas are gone  and as spring move towards summer, I may well find that other species have been exterminated from my yard. 
 It is now early April and it is raining and raining again; lasts week there was a destructive and brief storm that mauled my neighborhood from which I fortunately escaped personal damage. It was a really crazy and sudden storm; it came sudden and full of fury just after twilight with tons and tons of rain and straight line winds.
I was away when it hit and when I drove back to my neighborhood, dodging downed trees and power lines; the electricity was out and the sky was as clear as a mountain top one-hundred miles from the city. The stars in the night sky were brilliant -- -- Crazy!
And now a week later as I drive the  cut-off between Rugby and Oporto Madrid Boulevard, I skirt right at the base of Ruffner Mountain and there has been deep standing water on the street for the entire week.
It has not subsided; it still flows from the base of the mountain, from some great subterranean source that I imagine is filled beyond imagining.
I am tired of talking about it and I certainly do not have the patience to debate a fool about what is so obvious (nor do I imagine that such a debate would ever be productive) and I no longer think a political consensus is possible with the cult of denial.
I do not care much for politics, nor do I care much personally for the practice of doing yoga. I find both of them to be boring, but never the less I do them because it is good for me and very much in my self interest to do so.
The thing about addressing the climate in the Untied States just now is that it is much more of a political problem than a functional problem; we are at war with a political and cultural faction whose worldview is contradicted by facts and their obstinacy is very much against my own self interest. I am by nature a pretty pugnacious guy and have just about given up on reasonable persuasion and have come to the conclusion that the only thing for it is to defeat them. 
Maybe the ones who are left standing after that leveling will be more prone to the evaluation of objective facts and political consensus. I hope so and I really do not care for the playing of this game, but it seems that circumstances have left me with few other choices.
I don't like it but they don't ask you!

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