Friday, March 2, 2012

2012 Slice-of-Life Story Challenge | 2

This morning on the way to school I actually listened to the radio.  Uneventfully, the weather report started at the top of the hour.  In fact, I almost wasn’t paying attention…more focused on my  upcoming activities.  Blah, blah, blah.

Today will be cloudy with tornadoes expected.” 

No cursory “thunderstorms expected.”  No noncommittal “chance of severe storms.”  No blanket statement  “threatening weather.”  TORNADOES.  And, once you throw that idea out there…forget about it.  It’s a foregone conclusion that funnels, wind, unwelcome hail, and that disturbing freight train sound will all be in your neck of the woods posthaste. 

The storm chasers; they practically rejoice at the prospect of atmospheric instability.  They’d have a parade and then take the day to stalk it if they could. 

The school kids; they go berserk at the possibility of storms.  They’d announce 23 times it’s raining, watch at the window until the scenery became too real, and then crouch into position last-minute (but would probably rather be at home with their mommies!).

The teachers; they harbor fear that the storm will actually hit while they’re in class.  They’d be responsible not only for the kids’ physical safety but also their emotional well-being.  (Simultaneously terrified---if they’d admit it---that this is how it’s all going to end.)

Today will be cloudy with tornadoes expected.” 

I mean, who says something like that?  In the Midwest, that’s akin to yelling “FIRE!” in a crowded theatre.  Most of us have probably seen one, hidden from one, or know someone who’s lost everything in one.  We know the score: they're terrifying.  

Now, it's true: in most cases a tornado watch ends up to be nothing and more often then not (in my experience), a tornado warning draws the same result. In fact, we play the odds that the National Weather Service may be overstating their case because we’re ‘just-think-positive’ kind of people with a meteorologic history of all bark, no bite.  But, then again, there is always that chance that if we ignore expert advice, our flattened neighborhoods will end up on morning news shows like so many other areas devastated before and the possibility of loss transcending mere objects is highly probable. 
Today will be cloudy with tornadoes expected.

Tomorrow, I hope to hear about snow instead---not the scary spring storms that on a typical year should be weeks away...

Write on, 


  1. expressed that well and am praying the tornadoes did not hit. My Southern California news station just opened 5 pm news with a report of many active tornadoes in the midwest...

  2. That was quite a wake up call this morning! My parents live in southern Indiana, which was hit pretty hard today. My mom called me after I got home from school (I too am a teacher) and the first thing she said was "I'm calling to let you know we're okay and we're in the basement." What? I live in northern Indiana and we got some rain today...that's it. But I'm glad to know you made and so did they!

  3. Love the description of the kids - kind of a scary way to begin your day

  4. It was reported very strangely on our news too, as if it's a phenomenon that they couldn't quite explain. You described this well, and I too wonder at the words. It seems to me they could have at least followed with good explanation of when & exactly where. I'm just you so aptly wrote!


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