Last night while we were watching Criminal Minds and CSI (one of the few nights when we watch anything on the “Big Four”) the local CBS affiliate was doing the “Scary! Big Significant Scary Weather Event! Scary! Panic Time!” thing. So this morning it occurred to me that you can tell what the weather is going to be not by what they say but by how often they say it. If they completely preempt the regular shows for non-stop weather coverage there will pretty definitely be some precipitation and possibly some thunder/lightening and wind. If they only break in occasionally for an update there’s not much more than a 50 percent chance of anything happening – maybe a good rain but nothing really unusual. If they only run warnings at the bottom of the screen and that annoying little weather map in the corner that’s too small to see the weather on but big enough to block out the opening credits or English subtitles you’re trying to read, there’s a tiny, miniscule, extremely small chance that there will be a few teensy drops of rain.
Last night they were just breaking in occasionally and talking about 80 MPH winds and golf ball size hail. I heard just a little thunder and apparently it rained a little bit. You can’t really blame them though. If they’re not trying to stir up panic some people won’t pay attention and will later cry, “Why didn’t they warn us?!” if something really does happen.