Monday, January 31, 2011

Entry 127: Alternative Weather Terminology

When reporting on the snow-apalooza we're getting tomorrow night, our local weatherman revealed that he is a user of what I call "alternative weather terminology" (AWT).  Specifically, he described our upcoming storm as "a real humdinger!"  While I of course know exactly what he meant, I realize that others of you may not be familiar with the principles of AWT.  So I thought I would help out and go over some basic AWT concepts.  Let's begin with the humdinger, shall we?

1. Humdinger

Basically a Humdinger is any weather phenomenon that could potentially be the rarest for a given area in a given year.  For instance, our local upcoming humdinger might bring snow of up to 18 inches (heh heh) which could be the most bad-ass storm we get all year.  Hence, it was labeled a humdinger.  Note, however, that making a humdinger call this early in the year is a bold move; what if we get some badass storm later on?  Sorry- you already used up your humdinger for the year.  No exceptions. 

Regardless, local conditions dictate the designating of humdinger status.  12 inches of snow in Texas would probably be a humdinger, but not in Canadia. Cuz it's common there.  Like murders in Jersey. 

2.  Doozy

A doozy is something worth talking about, but pretty much only to make small talk with awkward family members or strangers in the grocery line.  Rainstorm coming in for a day or two?  Yup, could be a doozy.  Anyway, I'm going to buy my Captain Crunch and walk quickly away from you now.  

A doozy could be rain, snow, sleet, or even a heat wave.  The only point of care in using the term doozy is that you mustn't use it to describe a significant weather event unless you precede it with "a real."  As in: "Last week's storm was a doozy, but THIS weekend we're in for a real doozy!"  Obviously don't be retarded and use the word twice in one sentence, but you get the idea. 


3. The Wallop 


Look at that!  Boy, Texas is sure getting a walloping.  Lava?  Lightning?  Warm?  This is bad news.  "Wallop" is a term used when a storm is not only going to be epic, but also dangerous.  Like with lava*.  A walloping is generally reserved to describe a storm that is not happening to you.  You feel bad that other people are going through something dangerous and terrible, but you're really glad it's not you.  

*Studies done in the 90's have disproved the duck-and-cover method of surviving lava attacks

And finally...

4. The Snowpocalypse 

As you may have guessed, The Snowpocalypse is a rare and catastrophic event where everyone, everywhere, and in all times is covered in snow.  If you get tired of being snowed on and try to escape, you can't (cuz there's snow wherever you go).  Oh, you're a smarty pants and think you can fly somewhere warm?  Yeah, too much snow at the airports.  You're not going anywhere. 

Oftentimes people get a big dumping of snow (heh heh.... dumping) and want to drop the snowpocalypse bomb early.  This is a mistake.  Part of the problem is that people don't know enough terms to describe snowfall, so I've created a handy chart you can use for reference when talking about snowfall:

They say that the Eskimos have forty-two trillion words for snow, but I say that these four ought to do it.  Boobs are way cooler than snow and I can only think of a couple dozen words to describe them; why would snow need so many? Exactly.  Boobs > Snow. 

Well, if you don't hear from me for awhile I might just be buried under a fuck-ton of snow.  This storm is supposed to be big! I know it's possible that our upcoming humdinger could end up being a real doozie, but as long as its not a walloping or part of The Snowpocalypse I'll be happy.

Later team!

Caleb "Snow-Ninja" Shreves


  1. You know what's funny?

    I just checked the weather for here & on Wednesday it's going to be 71 & sunny.

    One of the few perks of living in the south.

    However, we've had a pretty horrendous winter this year so most everyone here feels entitled. I don't really care one way or the other as long as it isn't too hot & humid.

    That's going to be a humdinger of a beautiful day.

  2. You should look into a career in would make the morning report WAY more fun to watch!

  3. You don't know what chuffed means? I'm english - maybe it's an english things. We also say chuffed to bits! It just means happy because of something - to bits is an add on and means a lot. ;) There you go, you leaned something new ;) As did I - about the weather. I now live in Dubai, and apart from a little wind lately its generally scorchio (hot!) ;) Shah from - thanks for your visit btw - ;)

  4. We had a high of -2 today. Not counting wind chill.

    We usually get the 'fuck-load' amount of snow every year, and the 'snowpalooza' every other year. And that's why we drive SUV's. Suck on that Californians (who are pussies and shut down everything when there's a flurry - that's still shorts weather here)!

  5. "I just checked the weather for here & on Wednesday it's going to be 71 & sunny."

    Suck it, Andrew.

    I would be a great weatherman- but they'd probably fire me after a day. There's too many things on a weather map that are phallic, and I don't think I could contain my inner 5-year old.

    Oh, and I used to let Cap'n Crunch soak in milk for 30 minutes before eating it, so it was like a soft, mushy paste. Mmm indeed.