Deadman's picture

    MOFT: Episode 4 ('s short-term forecasts)

    I'm keeping this one short but My One Favorite Thing this week is's short-term forecasting, offered in hourly and even fifteen-minute intervals. (Here's an example for New York, NY)

    OK, this MOFT may not seem as life-changing as great-tasting, sugar-free, crystal-meth-like gum (oh be quiet, Orlando, you know you're still jonesing for your next pack), but these short-term forecasts are stupid awesome for a couple of reasons.

    1) The short-term forecasts are eerily accurate.

    I know, it may not seem all that impressive for weathermen to get the next 72 hours down correctly, and even their ability to dissect it all into precise 15-minute intervals may not seem like much, but I'm used to weathermen being wildly, notoriously wrong with their forecasts. I don't know about you, but there was a time while growing up in St. Louis when I wondered if meteorology had any more validity or predictive accuracy than astrology.

    But with this little invention, they've re-injected science into the equation, put the -ology back in meteorology and restored the sadsack reputation of the weatherman community (C'mon, be honest: At some point in your life, you've looked at a meteorologist on the TV and wondered: What numerous other vocations did this person previously fail at before becoming a meteorologist? I mean, who grows up and wants to be a meteorologist?!?)

    2) The forecasts are helpful.

    Oh sure, they may not do you that much good if you live in some fruity-tooty place like Los Angeles, where the weather is always friggin' beautiful and beachy, but for a wild and wooly place like New York City, where you can get 6 inches of snow and bitter cold a mere two days after enjoying a mid-December, 60-degree afternoon delight, these forecasts are insanely useful.

    Twice this past week, I've used the 15-minute forecasts to plan for my nighttime dog walks. I even stayed up an extra 1 1/2 hours one night so that I could walk him after said the rain was going to stop (Before you suggest I am cruel for making my dog wait to go potty, realize he hates the rain almost as much as I do. There is nothing worse than dog walks in cold rain, and the dog and I both know it).

    How cool would it be if you could get this kind of precision in other areas of your life? Hey Genghis ... say you're on a date, getting the check, and wanna know if you're going to be kissing the girl 45 minutes from now or walking home alone ... just check the short-term forecast. Maybe you're Mortimus and watching the Jets struggle to score (like Genghis!) against the lowly Seahawks, and wondering if your beloved franchise is indeed THAT cursed ... well, just check the 15-minute forecast and begin making your plans for excessive drinking and suicidal thoughts early (maybe Genghis will join you).

    Or maybe I'm just overly impressed because in my chosen field, the stock market, it's virtually impossible to predict what's going to happen in the next year let alone the next 15 minutes, and this kind of info would be better than getting a massive government bailout.


    Thanks for thinking of me, but I prefer the suspense.

    How low does your scoring percentage have to get until the outcome can no longer legitimately be considered suspenseful? ... I keeed, i keeed (the ladies love the orange shirt! Laughing)

    Wow, that's awesome. I put in my zip code and I learned that at 8:45 am, it's going to be 4 degrees outside. It's gonna feel like -15, but I'm into the reality-based world, not all this feelings crap, so I'm going with 4.

    Then, the temperature is going to go up 1 degree every fifteen minutes until 11, when it's going to reach 11. This is information I could have lived without. Because while I'm inside, I could have pretended it was at least in the 20s. Thanks, though. Reality is better.

    I do think it's a good idea to use the site to decide when to walk your dog! But today, the high looks to be about 12, and my dog is a big old wussy, so no walks for us. Yesterday, when I let him out in the morning, he went racing out the door and literally did a slide stop and turned around with a "WTF??" look on his face. Then, he turned around and came right back in and was a pain in the ass all day long because he had to go out, but when he went out, he wouldn't stay out long enough to take care of things. 

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