Today was supposed to be Driving Practice Day, in anticipation of my impending road test. Seemingly as a direct result of this, the National Weather Service is calling for hail, tornadoes, hellfire and general destruction to descend upon New York City by the evening rush. And so now tomorrow is to be Driving Practice Day: my friend offering his services in this regard (the driving, not the hail) is brave, but not stupid.
2012 has been one of those Years Marked by Crazy Weather – or Years, as they’re also known. There’s always something unusual brewing in the atmosphere; that’s just normal. Last October, for instance, we endured an early blizzard, which was followed almost immediately by some 80-plus-degree beach weather (and I know, because I went!). Each year in Park Slope or Williamsburg, somebody discovers a tree branch in their yard one morning and goes on the news blaming tornadoes in the night that may or may not have touched down. But just a couple of weeks ago, there was a real one – documented on video – roaring along the beach unselfconsciously at Breezy Point, Queens. (Talks are now underway to rechristen the area The Oh-My-God-It’s-Heading-Straight-For-Us Breachway.) So today’s warnings are no joke.
I once knew a guy who used to say, “Every day after work I go out into my yard with my two aerosol cans and go, ‘COME ON, GLOBAL WARMING!!! I mean, why wouldn’t you wanna live in New York if it was 78 degrees every day?!”
“Because it would be underwater,” was my response.
But is that where we’re headed? Seems that way, though not every weather anomaly can be a harbinger of doomsday. When I was a kid in Connecticut, a tornado touched down at the Windsor Locks airport. As these things go, it was hardly a superstar – basically, it knocked a couple planes over, stuck its tongue out and vanished – but it was big news. It did turn out, however, not to be a trend.
So perhaps today will see yet another weather event for the record books, hurtling us ever closer toward inevitable Armageddon – though knowing the knife-throwing accuracy of our pals at the weather desk, it’ll just turn out to be kind of a great big mess.
Either way, I don’t feel like practicing my parallel parking in it.