Watching the weather |

Watching the weather

Ever since the internet brought live weather maps into my life I’ve become a weather-map junkie. I look at the U.S., Kansas, and local weather maps several times a day so I can check the weather affecting friends and family across the U.S. — in Washington state, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Nebraska, Iowa, Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Michigan, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia, and Maine.

Despite all the thousands of times that I’ve checked the weather maps, yesterday’s map (Oct. 27) was unlike any other I’ve seen. With our normal weather pattern in the Flint Hills, storm fronts either come in from the southwest or the northwest and then move east at variable speeds.

But, yesterday the storm front ran straight north and south from the Texas Gulf Coast clear across Hudson Bay in Canada. And, the strangest thing about the front wuz that the weather was pushing and pumping straight north from the south and the front wuz stationary. It didn’t move a mile to the east all day.

It wuz spitting a light wind-driven rain when I got up at 7 a.m. and it didn’t quit for 24 hours. It never rained hard and it took 24 hours for Damphewmore Acres to receive 1.4-inches of rain. And here’s another strange thing about the front: that paltry little drab of rain filled my 4-acre pond overnight — put at least 4-feet of water into it and it’s running through the overflow pipe. I’ve never had so much run-off from such a light rain.

The weird front finally inched east. I’m thankful the pond is full, but it can quit with the moisture for at least several weeks and let the farmers complete their soybean and grain sorghum harvest and get their wheat planted.

I’ll mention that today (Oct. 28) the wind is blowing about 50 miles an hour from the northwest. Ugh!


Speaking of harvest, my garden harvest is about kaput. I harvested all the carrots, all the fall radishes and all the five varieties of green peppers. Nevah and I kept what we wanted out of the harvest and gave the rest away to our neighbors.

We still haven’t gotten a killing frost, but one’s in the forecast within the next few days. I think this is the latest date for a killing frost that I can recall. Before it frosts, I’ll sadly pick the last few ripe tomatoes. After the frost, I’ll take down the tomato cages and store them for the winter. My final harvest will be to dig the sweet potatoes. I planted them so late that I’ll be surprised if there’s many sweet spuds to dig.

Oh, I did get all my wildlife and chicken food plots planted before the rain started.


A kindly reader emailed me what he or she called “Entries for the Cynic’s Dictionary.” I thought they were funny, so here’s the definition of words I think you might enjoy.

* Boss: A personal dictator appointed to those of us fortunate enough to live in free societies.

* Childhood: The rapidly shrinking interval between infancy and the first arrest for reckless driving — or worse.

* Denial: How an optimist keeps from becoming a pessimist.

* Experience: In the working world, something you can’t get unless you’ve already got it, in which case you probably don’t want any more of it.

* Fitness: Salvation through perspiration.

* Jeans: The lower half of the international uniform of both workers and non-workers alike. Strangely, the more holes in them, the more stylish the wearer thinks they are.

* Laboratory Animals: Furry foot-soldiers in the name of science. Some die nobly in the battle to eradicate cancers; others give their lives so that we humans can enjoy peach-scented dandruff shampoo.

* Parasite: A base creature that extracts a living from the lives of others — like a tapeworm, a welfare cheater, or a biographer.

* Redneck: Popular term for a rustic male, but rarely employed when addressing one in person.

* Smile: To expose a portion of one’s skeleton as a gesture of goodwill toward a fellow human.

* Trailer Parks: Latter-day gypsy camps scattered throughout the vast American hinterlands; humble places of abode where hopes die young and tornadoes gravitate like flies to roadkill.

* X-ray: A diagnostic tool to detect existing abnormal growths and create new ones to make future examinations more fruitful for the medical community.

* Y-Chromosome: A line of genes designed for men only; the cause of virility, war, baldness, sports of all kinds, sex crimes, clever inventions, domination of TV remote controls, and a disinclination to ask for directions when lost.


Words of wisdom for this week: Beware of future Bureau of Land Management policy changes. It’s highly unlikely the rural community or outdoor recreationalists on federal public lands will appreciate them.

Hope you had a happy Halloween and all the days after are good ‘uns.


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