Reminder: weather can be fiercer than you imagine

Here’s a clip of Hurricane Irma shredding St Maarten:

Now imagine being on a boat in that weather.

Now imagine that that boat was little more than a barge built by a couple of guys with crude tools.

Now imagine that that barge is stuffed full of thousands of animals — it’s a makeshift zoo.

Now imagine that the weather is ten times, a hundred times, a thousand times more severe than Irma. OK, I can’t — I can’t even imagine being out in that disaster right now.

Now imagine that you’re such a gormless fool that you can believe that someone could ride out a storm like that in a floating barn.

Be safe, real people down there in the southeast.


  1. says

    I drive by a church and Christian school every day in my commute. Their church sign lately says “With God, all things are possible.” That’s their answer to this, and any other argument from observable reality. It’s the rhetorical equivalent of sticking your fingers in our ears and saying “I can’t hear you!”

  2. Walter Solomon says

    Now imagine that’s only one of the many problems with the silly story that was cribbed from and told better by the Akkadians–the original ark was a coracle–and it’s small wonder why few people who aren’t either willfully or involuntarily ignorant take it seriously.

  3. blf says

    But the flud was a gentle pitter-patter of soft rain, admittedly for a long time, and the holy burble doesn’t mention winds, so there weren’t any. Hence, this FAKE NEWS Irma spoof or the earlier HAARPvey false flag attack obviously don’t apply. And there are a lot of brown & uppity blacks there, living in luxury on the dole whilst smuggling drugs in and sex slaves out. And they are Gay. Because Benghazi!

  4. weylguy says

    But… but … PZ, you’re forgetting that Noah placed all the heavy animals (elephants, apatosauruses, titanosauruses, etc.) down near the keel, so they would act like a stabilizer for the boat. God’s magic breath provided all the oxygen the crew and animals needed through that one-square-cubit air vent, while angels hauled away all the urine and feces, leaving the Ark smelling clean and fresh. All it takes is a little faith, Mr. Scientist!

  5. says

    Holy fuck. It seems damn silly to say stay safe after seeing that. I deeply hope most people are safe. Damn, that’s vicious.

  6. tacitus says

    I have always found it amusing that creationists work so hard to provide plausible naturalistic solutions to about 90% of the problems raised by the idea of saving a handful of animals from drowning in a worldwide flood. I mean, the entire thing could only have been a supernatural event in the first place, so why not just claim the ark was a boat-shaped TARDIS protected from the storm by a forcefield? Makes just as much sense.

  7. says

    I was just reading about Barbuda, a small island with a population of 1600, that was hit by Irma 14 hours ago. No one has heard from them since. Helicopter overflights have reported that it’s been totally flattened. We’re all hoping that some have survived.

    That’s how scary these storms are. They can destroy entire islands.

  8. Michael says

    Now imagine a tornado hit Ham’s Ark Park. Do you think he is insured against acts of god? What excuses would he make for the damage?

  9. Crimson Clupeidae says

    The county I’m in was just declared part of the emergency. I’m evacuating friday or saturday. Not sure where I’m going yet, since all the hotels within 6 hours of here are booked, but I think a friend my lend me a couch for a few days.

  10. microraptor says

    Michael @12:

    Well, remember when the Touchdown Jesus statue was hit by lightning and burned up?

    On topic, MSN is reporting that there’s been at least two confirmed deaths in the US Virgin Islands. I can’t imagine what Barbuda’s death toll is going to be.

  11. robro says

    Per a story on The Daily News:

    Gaston Browne, prime minister of Antigua and Barbuda, told a local ABS broadcaster that one baby had died and about 60% of the population of about 1,800 is now homeless after Irma bore down upon the eastern Caribbean.

    The islands’ minister of foreign affairs reportedly told th enetwork that more than 90% of buildings were destroyed by the Category 5 storm with 185 mph winds.

    So most seem to have survived, although they say the entire island is underwater. One death in Barbuda, one in St. Barthelemy, and one St. Martin. Puerto Rico is currently being whipped.

    Cost of rebuilding St. Barts is $150million. The PM promises that the people of Antigua will help.

    Oh, and Tropical Storm Jose is now Hurricane Jose (Cat. 1), which is just a few days behind Irma and growing. Could be near “major hurricane strength” by Friday. It’s heading in the same general direction as Irma.

    There’s also Hurricane Katia (Cat. 1) in the Gulf off the coast of Mexico. It will probably move inland over the next couple of days, so not a dangerous storm.

  12. nobonobo says

    I assume the Florida National Guard are making every effort to safeguard the southern whitehouse. A 50ft. wall?

  13. DLC says

    Another “One in a thousand” storm. In the same year. You’d think that somehow the planet’s energy budget increased, which would allow for more big nasty cyclonic storms. Yeah, but there’s no global warming, so that can’t be it. Probably just a fluke . . . Two big hits in one year, with another system behind the second one, and a third one developing in the Gulf of Mexico.
    (note: I realize weather systems and patterns are more complex than simply pointing to global warming as the sole cause, but it certainly has an impact.)

  14. methuseus says

    I assume the Florida National Guard are making every effort to safeguard the southern whitehouse. A 50ft. wall?

    I didn’t notice it, but you’re right. Irma’s projected to basically go right up the eastern coast of Florida. Mar a lago may not survive. And Jose is right behind her in case it does. Damn…. Did Pence get control of the weather control satellites?

  15. Ichthyic says

    I assume the Florida National Guard are making every effort to safeguard the southern whitehouse. A 50ft. wall?

    I suggest lashing Trump and Rush Limbaugh to trees to the front of where the hurricane will hit.

    surely those blowhards together will be able to divert it!

    …and then we can just leave them there.

    as, uh… future insurance.