05 August 2008

the cone of uncertainty

Did you know that it was hurricane season? I remember that, at least around my house as a child, hurricane season was a pretty interesting time. We were all sure that my older brother was going to be a meteorologist, as he not only was glued to the Weather Channel (ah, the early years of cable) but he had a dry-erase “Hurricane Tracker Map” on the wall of the garage which he used to plot the movement of the storms as they roared towards landfall. Being infatuated with everything my brother did, I naturally shared his enthusiasm. It was also typically 137 burning degrees outside so this helped chew up some of the day.

At that time, nothing was more exciting than when a storm was approaching landfall. The Weather Channel would send some poor intern out onto the beach at Hilton Head or Homestead to get pounded by the wind and the blowing surf. He would be blowing around and getting pelted by sideways rain and telling the audience things they could probably see for themselves (“The winds are really starting to pick up here”). Before reality TV existed, that was as real as it got. And we would watch for hours.

Well, times are busier now, but hurricanes still find a way to entertain. Now we are privileged to have (cue threatening music and booming voice here) the CONE OF UNCERTAINTY. Nothing is more exciting than a (threatening music – “Duh duh duh!!”) CONE OF UNCERTAINTY. I mean, how great is it that in this life where everything is planned out and programmed that there can still be something so menacing as a (“Duh duh duh!!”) CONE OF UNCERTAINTY to cause us to wonder and fear and check Weather.com every 20 minutes just to see if the track has changed.

I, for one, love the Cone of Uncertainty and wish there was a way to extrapolate it to the rest of life. The Green Bay Packers could have the Brett Favre Cone of Uncertainty. College students could have a Dating Cone of Uncertainty, although, on second thought, that would bring up all kinds of “making landfall” references and I don’t think I want to be the one to get that started.

No matter. It’s hurricane season. Enjoy the show. And enjoy the (“Duh duh duh”) CONE OF UNCERTAINTY!!

1 comment:

  1. I don't know what you are talking about.