Fire and rain

One side of the country is looking at Hurricane Irma rushing at them. I wouldn’t want to be in Florida right now.

The other side of the country is on fire. I’m hearing stories from family members that it is snowing ash.

If only we could bring the two together for a day!

I’ll just mention that we’ve got clear skies and 20°C temperatures out here in the middle. Minnesota is perfect! Until December, anyway. Maybe November. Depends on your cold tolerance, I guess.


  1. rietpluim says

    Thanks for the James Taylor video. I love James Taylor.

    I saw a picture of some small animal covered with snow the other day. I didn’t get it at first. Now I understand it’s not snow. People have to deal with a hell of a lot lately.

  2. robro says

    A friend who lives in Portland posted that he tried to take a walk wearing a painter’s mask but only made it a block before turning back because he couldn’t breath.

    CalFire is listing some 70 active fires in California. Some are small, and some are contained, tho that doesn’t mean they aren’t still burning.

    San Francisco is a fair distance from any of these fires, but the wind circulation brings in the smoke. Where I work, I can usually see across Santa Clara Valley to the Lick Observatory on Mt. Hamilton some 30kms away, but that hasn’t been possible for a couple of weeks. This weekend the weather in SF was relatively hot (40° C), muggy, and smokey. The sun is blood red on rising. The moon a yellow glow at night. The usual gray fog has given way to a pale yellow. You can even smell the smoke at times. The health department issued advisories for people with heart and respiratory disease.

    Oh, and thanks to a great rain season this past winter, we’ve got a bumper crop of airborne allergens.

    You might say it’s a breathing optional opportunity here in the SF Bay Area.

  3. Larry says

    I have a cartoon posted on my cork board at work that divides the country into regions. The western states are in the “on fire” region while the southeast and gulf coasts belong to the “hurricane terror area”.
    It used to be kind of funny…

  4. Larry says

    Oh, and thanks to a great rain season this past winter, we’ve got a bumper crop of airborne allergens.

    Not to mention abundant wild grasses and weeds covering the hillsides laid bare during the previous seasons of fire that make absolutely perfect fire-starting conditions. Of course, when those are burned, baring the soils again, the rains come causing the run-off to turn the hills into land slides.

    Ah, the circle of life.

  5. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    JT’s song does bring back memories of undergraduate day/ Viet Nam War Protests.
    Here in Chiwaukee, the forecast temps implies an early fall….

  6. feministhomemaker says

    Just went through Harvey in Corpus where 30 miles made all the difference. Condo near downtown right on the Bay received between 74-85 MPH winds but 30 miles away Lockport received 130 MPH winds. We had a bit of water leak through the windows from being pushed in by the wind but Rockport and other surrounding towns were destroyed. Aransas County ISD has suspended all schools indefinitely. Students must try and enroll in other districts.

    I learned that a group called Corpus Christi Atheists/Atheists Helping Humanity was providing much needed help to people all around. So proud!!! Yes in my name! I yelled as I handed over a check to support their efforts!

  7. Ed Seedhouse says

    Well, about the time the storm arrives on the East Coast we in the west should be seeing a low pressure area to cool things off. So it’s not all bad news. Also, the smoke from all the wildfires is preventing the big heat from getting through today. We had a short peak near 30 C earlier today, then the temperature dropped like a rock and it’s decently cool now, and we can even go outside if we don’t breath…

  8. jrkrideau says

    @ 2 Chris Capoccia

    so are puerto rico, haiti & cuba going to survive better than florida?
    Cuba, almost certainly yes, it stresses hurricane preparedness [1].

    Puerto Rico, hard to tell, does it have a decent building code and disaster preparedness plan?

    Haiti, probably worse since much of its infrastructure is in ruins and most newly built dwellings are unlikely to conform to anything resembling a building code. I doubt the country has the resources or political will to have a good emergency.


  9. microraptor says

    There are at least three active fires within 25 miles of my apartment right now, and apparently we’re expecting a chance of thunderstorms on Thursday and Friday. The haze is awful- people who lived through the Mount Saint Helens eruption are saying that this is worse than that was.

    I personally can’t remember having this many active wildfires burning like this since 1987.

  10. LewisX says

    I have family in St Kitts, St Marteen and Jamaica. Right now St Kitts (and the Leeward Islands) have the nightmare escalating and there is no escape. It is a certainty. I fear for them and the people of the Caribbean in the same order of priority as Hurricane Irma’s progress and the reverse order of the US press’s priorities for Florida. Jesus fuck I hope Florida doesn’t suffer asTexas has but there are all these little islands before Florida, in the path of Irma, which have human beings that can suffer just as much as anyone else can.

    I am sitting safely, but not comfortably, over here in Europe, a little bit more than annoyed by the strange priorities of the press . I suppose small islands at least made for a list at the end.

  11. jrkrideau says

    12 LewisX
    Note the sources at the end of the article. Almost certainly written by Americans, probably on the mainland. One would expect a US slant—a bit sloppy on the Guardian’s part but they probably went with what they had.

  12. logicalcat says

    Coastal evacuations are already underway. I assume Key West is also being evacuated. To early to tell yet if the rest of Miami-Dade has to go. They say it will weaken, and I hope they do. Cat 3 and below is something we are used to. Any higher is scary. Of course things are different depending on economic status.

  13. microraptor says

    If Gush thinks the hurricane is fake, why doesn’t he just nip on down to Haiti for the next few days?

  14. jrkrideau says

    @14 LewisX

    One would expect a US slant

    Kind of my point really.

    Well yes. I was just pointing out that there were plausble reasons for the slant; the US reporters are more likely to be interested in the US effects and unaware that there are other nations in the area.

  15. What a Maroon, living up to the 'nym says

    JT looks pretty far gone in that video.

    The NYT has some initial reports of Irma’s damage, along with some video. Seems that Barbuda is likely to be most severely affected–small and flat, not much shelter. Phone lines are down there.

  16. favog says

    I’ve had ashes drifting into my eyes as I walk down the street the past few days. An acquaintance of mine had to get herself an inhaler a couple of weeks ago, I assume she isn’t liking this at all. She just came up here a year ago — from Florida.

  17. says

    WMDKitty — Survivor (#27) –

    Here, though I didn’t want it. I checked weather underground, and there were only about seven days total from June 1st to August 31st that didn’t hit 30°C as the daily high. If you stretch it further (May 1 – Sep 7) maybe 15-20 days with a high under 30°. It’s so bad the government had to threaten electricity rationing to go along with water rationing.

    And yet businesses refuse to relax their dress codes….

  18. johnx says

    I got a text from Tampa as the hurricane approaches
    The biggest ever seen
    We’re seeking higher ground here, how are you out west
    In the land of the evergreens?
    I got a cloth upon my face, hibernating in place
    As the ash falls all around
    But at least I’m in the northwest, breathing smoke from all the fires
    Instead of the in the southeast being drowned

    The President is speaking in North Dakota
    Where all the crops have just failed
    He said isn’t it great, the pipeline is finished
    We can keep mining and burning all the shale
    He said we’ll be OK as he sweltered in the heat
    Standing on the parched and arid ground
    While I’m in the northwest, breathing smoke from all the fires
    Instead of the in the southeast being drowned

    How’s the apocalypse treating you
    That’s how you greet your neighbors these days
    Has your home been flooded, have your forests burned up
    Can you see as you drive through the haze?
    Come visit if you can, Jill – might be nicer here than Tampa
    We can take a walk and listen to the crackling sound
    Here in the northwest, breathing smoke from all the fires
    Instead of the in the southeast being drowned