It is a rare thing indeed to sit outside on a west-facing porch on an early August evening in Texas without breaking a sweat. I can’t believe I just enjoyed having Lucy the cat walk across my lap while I enjoyed a bowl of Goldenbrook Farms Praline Pecan ice cream outdoors in August!
But it happens. No matter what the media feeds us about global warming, climate change, and extreme weather, I know from living the past 54 1/2 years in East Texas (Gasp! Am I really that old?) that unseasonable weather is normal at times! Especially in Texas.
One only has to consult past temperature and storm records to realize this. Our local television weather report even includes record temperatures and rainfall as part of its daily almanac information.
For example, the temperature extreme records for Texas were set back in the 30’s! It reached 120 degrees in Seymour (west of Wichita Falls) on August 12, 1936. The low temperature was set in 1933 on February 8 in Seminole (West Texas) at -23!
The poor folks in Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin sweated through temperatures of 114 on July 13, 1936! That was before air conditioning, and people that far north don’t usually have a/c anyway!
(Check it out yourself at http://www.netstate.com/states/tables/st_temp.htm)
And this was eighty years ago before climate change was the big headline.
Young people talk about how it never gets really cold here. I beg to differ. I remember standing out by the road in a strong north wind wrapped up in mittens and a padded, hooded coat with a fur-lined hood shivering while waiting for the bus. I remember walking the 100 yards or so from the bus to the band hall on school mornings with the wind cutting right through me. I remember going to our county fair in September and freezing.
And very recently, our area experienced one of the hottest summers on record. In 2011, Dallas broke its record with 70 consecutive days of 100-plus temperatures. In fact, in 2011 Texas was the hottest state on record.
So, why the hubbub, Bub? (corny?) I believe all the news coverage about global warming or climate change is due to several things, and yes, this is my opinion, but it is my blog, after all (haters need not respond).
First, since news has gone from one or two newscasts per day to 24-hour coverage, news programs have to say something, and when global warming became news because of a certain political figure, they grabbed it and ran with it.
It then became a political ploy to gain power, opening the way for more regulation, more taxation, and more restrictions. Let’s face it, climate crisis is big bucks for those who benefit from regulations and restrictions, because it means more tax revenue and people being forced to buy “greener” products and services. Did anybody ask you if you wanted to change from incandescent to fluorescent bulbs? Me, either. But we all have had to go out and buy the new light bulbs, haven’t we?
And don’t get caught dumping motor oil on the ground like we all used to do. It will cost you in hefty fines! Take it somewhere where you will likely have to pay to have it disposed of properly.
Okay, off my soapbox now. I think I’m going to go out and enjoy some more of this cool August weather. What an unexpected blessing!