Monday, October 22, 2007
The Weather Map
My friend watches the Weather Channel with an alarming regularity. The last five times that I was over at her house, that is the channel that was playing. Not ABC, or CBS, not even NBC or CNN (Chronic News Network as my mother called it). No one was surfing through the channels to see if there was anything more entertaining on, in fact for the most part the only thing I saw was the huge weather map on the screen and some subtle background music. Elevator music on TV...how droll. We could sit and chat about anything and not be interrupted by breaking news, or soap opera story lines. We could discuss how work is going, what yard project we both may have lined up and how we're going to get the work done. Every so often she would look over at the screen, shake her head and go on with our conversation as though her attention had never wandered from it for a second. When the talk turned to the lack of rain we have experienced in the past few months, she started laughing. "See that weather map on the TV screen?" she asked. Nodding that yes, I did indeed see the weather map still showing on the TV screen, she continued. "I figured out exactly where we are on that thing," she said. I gave her a quizzical look, and she went on. "No, really, I know exactly where we are. Just look at the map. See where all the clouds are covering it? Yes? Well, see that hole right there, in the middle? That's us. There we are. Cloudless and rainless, and it's where that hole has been for weeks now. No wonder all the ponds are drying up, the satelite won't let the clouds move an inch." You know, I didn't have the heart to tell her that the weather satelite had not a darned thing to do with it, I just reached over for the remote control and changed the channel. I was afraid if I stared at that hole in the middle of the weather map, I'd start to think the weather satelite had a hold on the rain, too.