I'm not sure I've mentioned this in the past. I don't know, maybe I have---about Alex's first fear, then love affair of all things weather. It started back when we flooded in North Dakota and we lost the house. The kid has a legitimate fear of water. Then we moved to Kansas and at first he had a healthy fear and loathing of all things tornado. Then he brought home a book from school all about how tornadoes are formed and thus began his formative years in studying tornadoes. Thank you again Overland Park School District for giving him that book. No really, thank you.
Now, not only does he have a healthy fear of tornadoes, he wants to go out and study them. He wants to examine wind shear, air velocity, how a mega-cyclone is formed and everything else associated with all things tornado.
Are you as scared shitless as I am when you hear this??? He wants to study a fucking mega-cyclone. Who studies a mega-cyclone anyway? I'll tell you who, anyone but my son, that's who.
And then because we live in Kansas the inevitable was bound to happen. We went under a tornado watch.
Now wasn't really a tornado watch per say, it was more like Greg Forbes saying, "you live in a zone where the TOR:CON is sitting at an 8 out of 10 right now. That means somewhere in your vicinity there will be a tornado and those people that get hit with the tornado??? Those people? They're well and truly fucked. They're all gonna die."
No really, that's not what he said at all. That's more what my son heard. What he and the Weather Channel said was more like this:
Several tornadoes are likely to touch down in the central United States; some of which could be large, violent and travel for miles upon miles. Developed by Dr. Greg Forbes, (Find him on Facebook) The Weather Channel's severe weather expert, the TOR:CON index is an estimate of the likelihood of tornado activity within a given time period. The TOR:CON values range from 0 to 10. A value of 4 means that there is about a 40% chance of a tornado within 50 miles of a location in the specified area of severe thunderstorm activity. This also means that there is a 60% chance that a tornado will NOT occur.
Since we were sitting at an 8 and you do the math, that pretty much meant we were fucked. An 8 reads: A high probability of a tornado in the area of concern. Yup, we were fucked and no, I really don't want to friend Dr. Forbes on Facebook, thank you very much.
|We went up to a 9...we're all gonna die!!!|
As an added bonus, the National Weather Service and the Storm Prediction Center have us as a test zone for new storm nomenclature and wording. Now they're using words like mass destruction, unsurvivable, catastrophic and life threatening for the tornadic event.
Mass destruction? Unsurvivable?? Catastrophic?!? You gotta be fucking kidding me.
Those words sent my child into a stimming fit that would have rivaled one of the goddamned tornadoes they were predicting. Now my son was scared out of his ever loving mind. The only saving grace was that I was pretty sure he wasn't going to run out into the middle of a storm to collect data. Notice I said I was only pretty sure, you just never know.
The last bit of information Alex caught was from the newspaper, "It's only the second time in U.S. history that the Storm Prediction Center has issued such an unusually early and dire warning more than 24 hours in advance. The last time was six years ago this month, before nearly 100 tornado's struck south-eastern states."
Oh fuck me.
And I still had to go to Sam's Club and buy some damn milk and eggs.
When I mentioned that we needed to go out my daughter said, "Why do we need to get eggs if we're all going to die tonight? Its just going to get sucked up and make a mess."
Nice try Lizzy, you know how I hate messes but we're still going to Sam's Club.
And then Alex hearing that last bit said, "Wait. What??? What do you mean we're all going to die tonight? If we're all going to die, I need to get my i-Touch. If I'm going to die, I want to die with my i-Touch."
Well, the kid has priorities.
As a last ditch effort, after Sam's Club I had the idea to go to Tornado Alley Live on the computer and watch storm chasers film tornadoes from their cars. Get this, these geeked-out nut-balls stream live film footage from their cars and you can text them while they chase the storms.
|There were so many GD storm chasers |
there was a frigging traffic jam in a corn field.
Did I mentioned we could text them??? We totally did. Oh my frigging Lord, we were texting all sorts of stuff: turn around, get closer, who farted, backup, you passed it, crickets, ditch, watch-out for that car, downed wires. You name it, we were texting it. I swear, they need to put better security pass codes on that texting option. Oh well, we enjoyed it.
And then we all tired to go to bed in the lower level but we stayed up all night because "camping" isn't nearly as fun as they make it out to be when the fear of being sucked out a window is looming over you.
We were all cranky as hell the next day and guess what? We didn't see so much as a flash of lightning.
Note: I haven't a clue if there was a traffic jam in a corn field but look at that mess. It's worse than a bunch of college students at a rave. And secretly? I'm a weather junkie and I totally want to chase storms after I fight my last IEP battle. I may soil my pants but it still sounds like fun.
And while I try to make light of our situation, there were over 100 tornadoes in Kansas alone and Wichita was hit pretty hard. My thoughts and prayers are with those who suffered from this past weekend.