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Hurricane season

 
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Even if nothing else happens, this year looks like a wild one. California came under its first-ever tropical storm watch. At present, no less than 5 systems are being monitored in the Atlantic. We just saw a storm pop up near Hawai'i.

The morning news said that 40 million people in the US Southwest are under tropical storm warnings. If my maths are correct, that's over 10% of the entire US population. By way of comparison, I think that the State of Florida is currently somewhere North of 20 million inhabitants plus occasionally a wandering governor and I don't think I've EVER heard of the entire state being under T.S. watch at once. Granted, the state's essential geography is such that you have 3 points each of which is at least 350 miles (about 800km) from each other, although that's also about the diameter of most hurricanes.

Arizona is hoping some of that rain reaches Phoenix, where the cacti are dying. Maui deserves an entire topic all by itself. A good tropical rain would likely have prevented their current misery, which apparently includes massive long-term contamination of their water lines.

This is drivel, for sure, but maybe not so meaningless. It's enough to make a "prepper" out of anyone. Start building your "Mad Max mobiles".

More practically, I've got the usual summer stock of non-perishable food, and I've been "testing" my solar-powered ice machine. Well, actually, once the daily temperatures hit 100 on a routine basis, I've been using it to keep drinks cold. Samsung refrigerators have crap icemakers in them so an independent unit is doubly valuable. Thankfully, we're now back to "normal" daily temperatures of around 94 (at 94% humidity, of course).

Incidentally, the reason why the Fahrenheit temperature scale is calibrated the way it is was because a European decided that 100F was where (European) humans found it insanely hot. And by the way, I think that this is the first year ever that Tampa, Florida has recorded a high of over 100. We may be sub-tropical/tropical, but we're surrounded by cooling water. Except that it's also 100 degrees this year.
 
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Tim Holloway wrote:. . . a European decided that 100F was where . . . .

I heard it was an attempt to calibrate blood temperature, in which case it was imprecise.
 
Tim Holloway
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Campbell Ritchie wrote:

Tim Holloway wrote:. . . a European decided that 100F was where . . . .

I heard it was an attempt to calibrate blood temperature, in which case it was imprecise.



New to me. I'd always read that zero was "as cold as you could measure" and 100 was the hot limit for humans. The too cold part I'm sceptical about, since it can get way below zero F in a lot of places. In any event, the Wikipedia considers your comment as one possible explanation. I do remain firm in my belief that Fahrenheit is a much better scale for measuring human comfort than Celsius, just as I prefer feet/inches for woodworking (though I do CNC and 3D printing in Metric).

However, the human body temperature, long pegged at 98.6F has been dropping in recent years. My own "normal" temperature is 98.4, and my first wife claimed that her ex clocked in at 96.8.

Anyway, since this morning, Tropical Storm Emily has been named in the Atlantic, one of the other systems has passed over the Florida Keys, and likely will target Houston TX, which, I believe, has been impatiently waiting any sort of cool-down. And Hurricane Hilary moved down to Tropical Storm status, whose liquid blessings(s) are beginning to be felt in earnest out West.
 
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Campbell Ritchie wrote:I heard it was an attempt to calibrate blood temperature, in which case it was imprecise.


American Physical Society wrote:Fahrenheit calibrated his temperature scale between 0 and 96. Conveniently, 96 was a highly composite number divisible by 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 12, and more. He defined 0°F as the freezing temperature of a brine solution made from equal parts water, salt, and ice, and 96°F as the temperature of the human body, which he measured by placing the thermometer under his arm (This would later prove slightly inaccurate: Human body temperature is 98.6°F).

https://www.aps.org/publications/apsnews/202205/history.cfm
 
Campbell Ritchie
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Actually, I think 96℉ is more accurate than they suggest. Axillary temperature is about 1℃ (=1.8℉) lower than core body temperature. I read somewhere that 0℉ was the lowest temperature Fahrenheit could achieve, and that must have been before the concept of absolute zero had been developed.
 
Tim Holloway
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... and in the roughly 18 hours since I last checked in, the Atlantic Tropical Storms Franklin and Gert got named.

I saw some footage of flooding in California (Hilary) and it was horrendous. Basically an entire forest was being swept downstream.  Some are worried that the San Andreas fault may slip since apparently it has been dry rocks along the fault that could be lubricated by the heavy rains. A quake of about 5.1 on the Richter Scale did hit further downstate, co-incidentally or not.

I think Phoenix finally got its rain, though.  I know people were shouting with joy because yesterday the high didn't break 100 for the first time in 60 days.

An as-yet unnamed system that passed over the Florida keys yesterday is now solidly in the Gulf of Mexico and will probably get a name in 48 hours or less. Radar already shows classical storm forming. The expected target is somewhere around the Texas/Mexico line, but I'd lay odds that some effects will be felt from the Florida Panhandle to New Orleans and all along the Texas coast. So Houston may get that cooling-off they wanted.
 
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Tim,

When I heard about the earthquake after the heat and rain I was thinking that a good newspaper story title could be:

Shake and bake.

Kevin
 
Tim Holloway
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And Tropical Storm Idalia is now forming in the Gulf. I'm in the cone, but not the disaster declared counties.
 
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Tim Holloway wrote:I do remain firm in my belief that Fahrenheit is a much better scale for measuring human comfort than Celsius



Why?  I mean, isn't this really just a "familiarity" issue?  If all you ever used/knew was Celsius, then the Fahrenheit scale would seem pretty strange to you.
 
Tim Holloway
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fred rosenberger wrote:

Tim Holloway wrote:I do remain firm in my belief that Fahrenheit is a much better scale for measuring human comfort than Celsius



Why?  I mean, isn't this really just a "familiarity" issue?  If all you ever used/knew was Celsius, then the Fahrenheit scale would seem pretty strange to you.


No, for two reasons. First, because Fahrenheit was calibrated to the human body and just happens to scale to easily detectable comfort ranges (at least for me).

YMMV. People in Minnesota may be more nuanced to the really cold temperatures, but I live in Florida, so I don't deal often with solid-water temperature ranges, so here's my metric:

10° and below: DAMNED cold
10-20°: really freakin' cold
20-30°: too darned cold
30-40°: freezing cold
40-50°: uncomfortably cold
50-60°: pretty darned chilly
60-70°: Cold enough to turn off the A/C (e.g., 2 weeks in January)
70-80°: comfort range
80-90°: warm
90-100°: hot. Turn the A/C back on!
100°+: seriously hot.

This is based on indoors (no wind, no sun, quiescent activity), normal (for here) humidity. I'm less tolerant of 85-degrees or more these days, and 60's are great for gardening in the sun with light wind.

My optimal office comfort temperate is 75°F. Below that it's chilly, above that I need moving air. and that brings me to my second point:

I can feel a difference of 1 degree Fahrenheit. A Celsius degree is nearly twice that, but who quotes weather in fractions of a degree Celcius outside of climate  predictions? It's like failing to distinguish between C-sharp and D on the musical scale. Also, 75F is about 23C. It's a much rounder number when doing rough comfort estimates.

Speaking of feeling temperatures, Hurricane Idalia is currently orbiting me. It's far enough out that severe weather hasn't hit (yet). I've measured top wind speeds of 17MPH so far, and since we don't do local weather in metric, I'll leave it at that. I'm accustomed to hurricanes starting with a cool mist and light breezes, then intensifying. This one wasn't felt until 8AM this morning, at which it had already made landfall. Before that, it was just typical miserable August weather. Temperature overnight around 78, winds 3-4 MPH. And it's still 78 and muggy. Whether this is Global Warming turning the Gulf of Mexico into soup stock or just a quirk of this particular storm, I don't know, but Smeagol's not happy.
 
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fred rosenberger wrote:

Tim Holloway wrote:I do remain firm in my belief that Fahrenheit is a much better scale for measuring human comfort than Celsius



Why?  I mean, isn't this really just a "familiarity" issue?  If all you ever used/knew was Celsius, then the Fahrenheit scale would seem pretty strange to you.



Better still: consider a test case where people lived much of their lives in Fahrenheit and then switched, living in Celsius from then on. What would happen? Would people become alienated from weather reporting? Or indifferent to it?

Like us here in Canada, where we switched in about 1975. Things are now pretty much as they always were and I don't think even the most curmudgeonly old fart here is hoping for Fahrenheit to come back.
 
Tim Holloway
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Well, as I said, these days I live in a dual world. Some of what I work with is taditional, some is metric. I find that metric works well with CNC milling and 3D printing and would generally hate to use feet/inches there. But working with wood, the gap between centimeters and decimeters is just plain awkward. Again, it's a case where the units were designed to approximate the human body on the one hand and to be scientifically accurate on the other. Splitting stuff into halves, quarters and thirds is simply easier and less error-prone than trying to mark out  a joint for 33.333...  mm. A lof of shelves and stuff I work with are 12-inch, 15, inch and 18-inch spacings, and darned if their metric equivalents come naturally to me, A foot is about 30.5cm, and while being precise to 0.5cm in wood is generally futile, I don't want to have to juggle odd numbers in my head or mis-match the rest of the furniture.

Some of my thermometers read °F, some read °C. When the A/C gets funny, though, I have to find a Fahrenheit one, though, since 30-something C ranges from comfortable to seriously hot and I prefer the more precise 70/80/90 range. Not that I am juggling the temperature controls, but the stupid thermostat keeps mysteriously dropping power and I have to check to see if it's acting up again or I'm just having a hot flash.
 
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You'll see those maps which show "metric" countries in one colour and "non-metric" countries in the other colour... Canada is always shown in the one colour. But the reality is more complicated. Cars and road signs show distances in kilometers so we all think of those kinds of distances in kilometers. Other distances: I don't know my height in metric, and likewise (I observe) young people don't either. The strips beside the door of the convenience store which show the robber's height to the cashier are in feet, not meters.

The thermometers in my kitchen showing the temperature outdoors and indoors show Celsius, as does my thermostat. (I set them that way.) But the oven is in Fahrenheit.

When we buy gas for the car it's priced by the liter. Back when the conversion took place some members of parliament wanted to buy a gas station and continue to price by the gallon, but that is economically dumb. Given the choice of $2 per liter or $9 per gallon, I bet most people would go for the $2 price. But when I buy fruit and veg in the supermarket it's priced by the pound for the same reason. The cash register tape shows me the price per kilogram, though.

That's how it is 50 years later. Not likely to change, then.
 
kevin Abel
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I was watching a Neal De Grasse(possible spelling)  Facebook video and he pointed out that illegal drug dealers worked in metric for a long time.  Maybe they can be recruited to do work on converting the USA.  

Joke:  When American Football changes from yards to meters.   I want there to be cheer litres.

I'll leave now.

Kevin

 
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kevin Abel wrote:. . .  illegal drug dealers worked in metric for a long time. . . .

That may be because they were emulating the scientific and medical communities which changed from grains to milligrams many years ago.

I want there to be cheer litres. . . .

And I thought my jokes were bad.
 
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Speaking of "obsolete" measuring systems, I absolutely cannot remember my weight in stone. Doesn't help that the stone is different in Scotland to England, either. Not sure which my electronic scale measures.

My 1985 Ford Thunderbird had a 2.3L engine but to replace the battery you needed a 7/8-inch wrench. We buy Coca-Cola in 8 or 12-ounce cans and 2 or 3 liter bottles.

Sometime the measurements really do bow to convenience.

Idalia has come and gone, by the way. Since it has mostly traversed sparsely-populated areas, damage and injuries are reported minimal so far. Wind speed here peaked at 17MPH according to my (partially-sheltered) gauge, and actually the max for the year was 23MPH 2-3 months ago. But a lot of cracking noises and swaying branches from the woods. No major limbs down I can see yet.

The eye of the storm, which was down to Category 1 at that point probably passed 100 to 125 miles West of here. Power failed for a few hours and just as a precaution, I fired up the solar icemaker, so at least we had cool drinks while waiting. The panels were under shelter and won't be brought back into the sun until later today. Didn't want them to get cracked by storm debris. As it happened, the outage was only about 2 hours, though. Rain measured only 7.6 cm, but I don't fully trust that. The more it rains, the faster the batteries on the remote sensor die. I need to re-program it. No flooding here, at least.

And the temperature never did really cool down.  
 
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Tim Holloway wrote:. . . I absolutely cannot remember my weight in stone. . . .

No, the stone was onlyi ever used in Britain; people weigh themselves in pounds in USA. Of course, the different sizes of stone can be used to cure obesity, if you can go down from 16st to 14st by crossing the Tweed.
 
kevin Abel
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I'm living in South East Florida.  
I was afraid of being trapped in my condo during covid.  
I couldn't stay in my condo in a hurricane.   I didn't want to go to a shelter to catch covid.  My mother wasn't eager to drive up north.  
We wanted to stay away from air travel during covid.

I chose to get impact storm windows.  It took a year to get them installed because the factories were understaffed and backed up.
One window kept cracking when it was being installed.  

Now covid is more under control and the storms have gone further north.  

I have never been in a hurricane.  i'm not completely sure the windows will work.  

I think that I'd go to a shelter for anything above cat 3 as a QA test.   I'm a HAM radio operator and they look for volunteers at the shelters so I might enjoy that part.

Kevin
 
Tim Holloway
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Campbell Ritchie wrote:

Tim Holloway wrote:. . . I absolutely cannot remember my weight in stone. . . .

No, the stone was onlyi ever used in Britain; people weigh themselves in pounds in USA. Of course, the different sizes of stone can be used to cure obesity, if you can go down from 16st to 14st by crossing the Tweed.



Actually, I've never really understood why it was that common even in UK. It's not a very precise unit ­— even less so than °C as a human comfort index.

Speaking of human comfort, at 9:30 PM last night, the outdoor temperature here was a glorious 72°F. This morning's low was 65. People all over Florida have been exclaiming "Fall has arrived!". It won't last, of course. Highs later this week are predicted to be around 97. But 65 is my "magic number" temperature for when opening windows is better than air conditioning.

And of course, we're keeping an eye on what may become Hurricane Lee. It's the first storm of the year with a projected classical Africa-to-Florida track.
 
Tim Holloway
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kevin Abel wrote:I'm living in South East Florida.  
I was afraid of being trapped in my condo during covid.  
I couldn't stay in my condo in a hurricane.   I didn't want to go to a shelter to catch covid.  My mother wasn't eager to drive up north.  
We wanted to stay away from air travel during covid.

I chose to get impact storm windows.  It took a year to get them installed because the factories were understaffed and backed up.
One window kept cracking when it was being installed.  

Now covid is more under control and the storms have gone further north.  

I have never been in a hurricane.  i'm not completely sure the windows will work.  

I think that I'd go to a shelter for anything above cat 3 as a QA test.   I'm a HAM radio operator and they look for volunteers at the shelters so I might enjoy that part.

Kevin



Glorious Florida! The Freedom State, where "small government" means that one man can override the decisions made by local governments based on their own assessed local needs. Where you can carry a gun, but not a book. Where your education tax dollars can pay for a rich kid to go to Disney World — but wait! Disney is "woke".

Bleh. Unfortunately, no storm can possibly wash away the mess that our institutions have been left in over the last several years. Hopefully the people themselves will have had a bellyful by next election.

Your windows were a good investment. As to hurricane damage, my nephew was born at the hospital at Homestead NAS. It was levelled by Andrew (I think it was Andrew). The same storm where the Hurricane Center stopped being able to measure wind speeds because their anemometer had been ripped off the roof by the winds. Yes, I'd be concerned.

So if they say evacute, pack up the cat and your mom. if not, join the Hurricane Net (http://hwn.org).

No place in Florida is "hurricane proof", although Jacksonville comes close. Thanks to geography most storms are going to be seriously degraded by the time they get here, whether from overland from the West coast or by the "weed whacker" effect that travelling next to land does when coming up on the East. Only if a storm is moving almost due West from the Atlantic does the inland area get clobbered. Last time that happened was in 1964. The Beatles played the next day in the Gator Bowl, after having argued the city into not racially segregating the audience, and the residual winds required Ringo to nail down his drumset.
 
kevin Abel
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Tim,

I added the hurricane url to my list of good urls.

When I hear about something that happened with a band I Joke and say that it is the symbolism.

I lived across the street from Yankee Stadium up until I was a few years old in the 1960s.   My mom asked me if she made any mistakes raising me.  I told her that she should have opened the windows when the Beatles were playing.

Kevin
 
Tim Holloway
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kevin Abel wrote:Tim,

I added the hurricane url to my list of good urls.

When I hear about something that happened with a band I Joke and say that it is the symbolism.

I lived across the street from Yankee Stadium up until I was a few years old in the 1960s.   My mom asked me if she made any mistakes raising me.  I told her that she should have opened the windows when the Beatles were playing.

Kevin

Laugh if you like. Lynyrd Skynrd first got together about 2 blocks from my old house on the Westside of Jacksonville. They'd already taken off by the time I bought it. but occasionally I'd hear some awful professional music coming from about 2 garages down. Though personally,, I'd rather have had Molly Hatchet.
 
Tim Holloway
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... Aaand it's official: Tropical Storm Lee, sustained winds 45MPH, predicted to become a major hurricane by Sunday afternoon.

If recent tracks hold, it will probably hook around North of Puerto Rico and be a major nuisance to the Central Atlantic, including possibly Bermuda.

Or, it could force itself out of of the rut and take the traditional path, which could slam anywhere from Florida to North Carolina.

Stay tuned!
 
kevin Abel
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I have never been in a hurricane before even though I have lived in FL for 4 years.  
I made it through the 7.1 Earthquake in CA.  Then as a 9/11 WTC volunteer.  I hope to make it through my first hurricane.  
It it's above a 3, I may want to evacuate or go to a shelter to test the new windows.

I'm on Windows 11 and concerned about my storm windows.

Kevin
 
Tim Holloway
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Florida building codes have mandated impact-resistant windows for quite a while now. Having upgraded just makes you better off.

Bear in mind, though, that when you see hurricane videos, you're not likely to see caved-in windows. The real damage comes when the roof comes off. Which is why hurricane clips are code since Andrew. Even worse if is you're hit by a storm surge, but that's of primary worry to the beach residents.

One of the most appalling things I've seen from a hurricane was several years ago when a news broadcaster in Puerto Rico was covering the storm even as it peeled large swathes of stucco off the side of a high-rise hotel. No one was hurt, but the potential was frightening.
 
kevin Abel
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I live in a Condo on the third of four floors.   I have two roofs above me so it might help a little bit.  

I'm a 45 minute drive going east to get to the ocean.  I feel OK about a storm surge except that I'm still only about 10 feet above sea level.  

Kevin
 
Tim Holloway
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Check your local and National Weather Service flood zone/evacuation maps. Unfortunately, there are places where a 45-minute drive means you're 3 blocks from the ocean, so travel time doesn't help.

I'm only 12 feet up myself, but my flood risk would be surge up the St Johns River. I'm 30-45 minutes from the ocean myself and don't worry about it reaching that far in directly.

Reportedly the Fontainbleu Hotel in Miami determined that their best approach to storm surge would be to simply open the doors and let it go right through. They never had to test that idea, though.

If you are in a storm surge warning area, though, get out. What floor you are on doesn't matter. More important is if the surge washes out the foundations of the building. Many taller structures are on pilings. but a lot of damage last year from Ike was erosion along the coast. People had their swimming pools dangling in the air.
 
kevin Abel
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https://floridadisaster.maps.arcgis.com/apps/instant/lookup/index.html?appid=aa18a2d8737c4d66bb6434a09e17203a

The link above is showing that Pembroke Pines is not in a flood zone.   I live next to a lake.  I'm wondering if homes slide into the lakes in a hurricane.

 
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kevin Abel wrote:
The link above is showing that Pembroke Pines is not in a flood zone.   I live next to a lake.  I'm wondering if homes slide into the lakes in a hurricane.


Not in Florida.  Homes slide into sinkholes here.

But you're not in sinkhole country, so I wouldn't worry. Your main concern is wind, and you have windows designed for that, as long as it's under Category 4. Above that, head for the hills!
 
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I may be focusing on the wrong thing here, but...

Did anyone else think it was odd to hear that Hurricane Lee was headed toward the Leeward Islands?  Anyone?  Or perhaps it's the normal thing, since "leeward" basically means downwind, and storms normally travel downwind, by their very nature.  But still...

Anyway, good luck this season.  

 
Tim Holloway
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Mike Simmons wrote:I may be focusing on the wrong thing here, but...

Did anyone else think it was odd to hear that Hurricane Lee was headed toward the Leeward Islands?  Anyone?  Or perhaps it's the normal thing, since "leeward" basically means downwind, and storms normally travel downwind, by their very nature.  But still...

Anyway, good luck this season.  


Pure co-incidence. There are "standard" hurricane tracks for storms that form in the Gulf of Mexico and for storms that form in the Atlantic. The prime-time Atlantic track starts as a sandstorm in the Sahara, blows West into the Atlantic, where the disurbed atmosphere starts picking up water around what we now call the Cabo Verde Islands, used to call the Cape Verde Islands, and if we wanted to linguistically consistent should probably call Los islas de cabo verde. Or what the heck: "green islands".

Anyway, forget linguistics. The storm then travels primarily due West, often gaining strength as it does (like Lee). In the process it generally passes near or over the entire island chain that starts with Cuba and Jamaica and progresses East and South under the names of various nations until it runs into South America. Or, to be more accurate, does all that in the other direction as far as the storm is concerned. The Windward and Leeward Islans are 2 sub-chains, along with the Virgin Islands and so forth. And just because I live relatively near them doesn't mean I can keep track of which is where myself!

Lee has tracked North of the islands so far and today's forecast has it following the recent trend of bending sharply North and probably spending its life in the open sea. I don't know how long that trend will continue. My experience has been that there will be 1 or 2 "popular destinations" on the US mainland (say, Houston and North Carolina or Lousiana or South Florida) and storms will progress on track to these destinations. But usually a given target area is only in effect for a season or two and then a new target(s) will be found.

As for the name "Lee", once hurricanes had no names and were known only by their dates. The 1935 Labor Day Hurricane that hit the Florida keys, washed hundreds out to sea and wrecked the Overseas Railroad, for example. Eventually, however, as tracking became a thing, storms were named after women (because "woment are unpredictable creatures prone to sudden wrath ( oink oink)").

That became politically incorrect and the name list (a new list is assigned every year)  was then formulated alternating men's and women's names. Of note is that just like famous sports players, if a storm is particularly memorable, its name is retired (like Katrina or Andrew). Otherwise the name becomes eligible for re-use in a later season.

Current naming not only holds to the man/woman naming alternation, but also takes names from English, Spanish and French. Which is why Lee's successor is Margot and was preceded by Idalia.
José didn't get anyone's attention.
 
kevin Abel
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Tim,

I think that I'd fly up north to NY or CT if a 4 or 5 is on the way.

I'm wondering if shelters in FL are any safter than my condo with storm windows.

 
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Tim wrote:As for the name "Lee", once hurricanes had no names and were known only by their dates. The 1935 Labor Day Hurricane that hit the Florida keys, washed hundreds out to sea and wrecked the Overseas Railroad, for example. Eventually, however, as tracking became a thing, storms were named after women (because "woment are unpredictable creatures prone to sudden wrath ( oink oink)").



My family tells the joke that hurricanes are feminine because they are HURRicanes and not HISacanes.

Kevin

 
Tim Holloway
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kevin Abel wrote:

Tim wrote:As for the name "Lee", once hurricanes had no names and were known only by their dates. The 1935 Labor Day Hurricane that hit the Florida keys, washed hundreds out to sea and wrecked the Overseas Railroad, for example. Eventually, however, as tracking became a thing, storms were named after women (because "woment are unpredictable creatures prone to sudden wrath ( oink oink)").



My family tells the joke that hurricanes are feminine because they are HURRicanes and not HISacanes.

Kevin


I've heard it before, but that just shows my age. It doesn't work anymore.

Huracan is a Mayan deity with one human leg and the other leg being a snake. Forget what you read in the Bible, It was actually Huracan who unleashed the Great Flood, The Mayan gods had a lot of trouble getting human beings right, so that was how they wiped out their failures. If I'm remembering correctly, a few survived and we call them "monkeys".

You don't see "hurricanes" in other parts of the world. Depending on where you are, a "hurricane" may be called Typhoon or Cyclone or simply Tropical Storm (although we differentiate, promoting from Tropical Storm to Hurricane once sustained winds exceed 75MPH). The term "Orkan" is used in Germany, although at those latitudes, the storm is no longer tropical. I only noticed them naming them in the last decade, and more recently naming such storms in the UK. Which may mean I've just been ignorant, or that they weren't considered so noteworthy before that.

The problem when fleeing a hurricane by going up the East Coast is it may sucker you. One of the nastiest storms in history nuked Rhode Island (about 1928 or so, I think). When a storm threatened my workplace downtown, they took all their backup tapes, loaded them on a truck and headed up Interstate 95. The storm missed us, dumped a lot of rain on North Carolina, and the truck got stuck between 2 flooded-out segments and couldn't return. Ooops

Hurricane shelters are often cinder-block structures such as schools. They may not be able to take a Categorty 5 direct hit, but unless a spawned tornado pulls the roof off, they're fairly secure. The data center of a company I used to work for was built to sustain Category 4 winds.

If you're really, really paranoid, head to Kansas City.

Incidentally, Hurricane Idalia scooped up a bunch of flamingos from Texas and left them scattered from Florida to Ohio and the Carolinas.
 
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Before the pandemic there was a hurricane headed west.  I was not sure if it would turn north.   My mom and I went up to CT to see our family.  The hurricane did make the turn and go north.

I was expecting the FLL airport to be full of people waiting to see what the hurricane would do.  If it was going to hit SE FL they would get on any plane to escape.  The airport wasn't anymore busy than a regular day.   Maybe I would go to the airport a day before and wait there to make a decision with a safety margin to get back home.

Kevin
 
Tim Holloway
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I wouldn't go by airport crowding. People in Florida don't evacuate sensibly. Most will think they can ride it out no problem and then at the last moment, flood the highways. It's now policy for example to have Interstate 10 be entirely one-way if there's a major evacuation in the Jacksonville area thanks to an awful mess several years back.
 
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It's another topic, but tomorrow is a tough day for me.   I was a HAM radio operator for 2 miserable days in NYC at the  WTC.   I was mostly uptown at the Red Cross building.  Then I went into the smoke at 14th street.  Next I was next to the pile for an hour choking.  
I still see the image of a man showing me a photo of a loved one and he was asking how to find him.   I think I just froze and didn't know what to do or say.
Its 22 years later and still call the LHI Organization to talk about it.  

 
Tim Holloway
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I haven't been to NYC since before the WTC was built. But back then, I was working on an open-source tool called the EJBWizard, which could reverse-engineer database tables and generate EJB Entity Beans. Back when EJBs were much messier.

One of my biggest fans and contributors had been silent. Until one day, I got an email off his account from his widow. He worked on the 97th floor.

We tend to think of 9/11 as a major catastrophe. Well, it is, but consider that 2000 people just died in Morocco. The difference being that the USA hadn't been attacked on its own soil in any major way since about 1812.

America lost its commitment to freedom that day. We may have the Second Amendment, but people forget that even slaves were allowed arms, when their master permitted it. Then, as now, the key was that the masters ensured that they always had better arms. When was the last time you asserted your right to keep and bear thermonuclear arms? Or tried open-carry in an airport? Or an NRA rally, for that matter? We fought for our freedom so that we could vote to keep it. Or, as Ben Franklin noted: not.
 
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