Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010 -OR- 41 Ways to Give Thanks ...

Residential side street of the Four Corners area of Silver Spring, Md., where Quill's parents live, 4:44PM, Nov. 25, 2010.

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Thanksgiving 2010 ...

I started an earlier version of this entry around 130PM, and while I was heavy on vitriolic political commentary, I was short on time and had to get ready to go to Quill's parents' house in Silver Spring for Thanksgiving dinner.

While dinner was nice, I don't have a lot of good photos to post -- and I am happy that my life situation is so much better than it was a year ago or, for that matter, the past several Thanksgivings.

Looking north at the 2000 block of 15th Street, NW, Washington, D.C., 4:00PM, Nov. 25, 2010. I was walking to the Metro to go to Silver Spring.

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Instead, I'll talk / complain about the weather ... It is overcast and mild (around 54F here in the city) tonight.

The weather has been -- from my perspective (which, admittedly, is not that of most people) -- unusually boring / blah / lousy / too warm this fall and this year.

This past week alone, we've had rain in the forecast for days it seems but in the end, everything "sheared out", "dried up", "lifted north of the Mason Dixon line" and the D.C. area mostly dry.

ChrisT took this picture from his office overlooking Freedom Plaza (with its infernal skateboarders) and Pennsylvania Avenue at dusk on Thursday, Nov. 23, 2010. The wussy weather system had past through -- dropping virtually no rain -- and it was already clearing in the west behind the towers of Rosslyn / Arlington.

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However, a strong cold front is approaching from the Ohio River valley and there APPEARS to be a lot of precipitation along it.

Here is the Great Lakes sector NWS radar mosaic (always in composite mode instead of base reflectivity), 0358UTC 26 Nov 2010 (10:58PM EST Nov. 25, 2010).

I'm sure all this precipitation will find a way to miss us.

We've had two weather systems miss us in the past three days including this morning with just a few spits of precipitation (0.04" at BWI, 0.03" at DCA and IAD). The system today was actually a warm front preceding the approaching cold front.

Below are the updated precip stats for the three regional airports through today (Nov. 25, 2010). (Sept. 1st is included since that marks the start of "climatological fall".)


DCA
November (thru 25th): 2.19" (-0.34")
Since September 1st: 11.61" (+2.07")
Year-to-date: 32.97" (-2.83")

BWI
November (thru 25th): 1.84" (-0.73")
Since September 1st: 13.05" (+3.34")
Year-to-date: 41.31" (+3.27")

IAD
November (thru 25th): 2.39" (-0.37")
Since September 1st: 10.93" (+0.98")
Year-to-date: 37.52" (-0.66")

Note the huge -- 8.34" or nearly two months' worth -- difference between DCA and BWI.

Although the monthly, seasonal and annual stats don't really show a drought -- only DCA is below for the year by about 8% -- it still feels as though it has been a particularly unpleasant weather year for me as a record snowy winter abruptly -- almost violently -- shifted into a disgustingly hot spring and summer. This included what certainly felt like prolonged dry periods broke by a couple very heavy rainfall episodes that masked the dryness.

At Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA), from June 1, 2010 through today (Nov. 25, 2010) there have been 49 days of measurable rain -- in a period spanning 178 days or only 27.5%.

Most of those rainfall episodes were quite small -- under 0.10".

Of the 16.07" of precip that has fallen in that time, over one quarter fell in a single calendar day event (4.66" on Sept. 30th).

Overall, 30 of those 49 events involved rainfall of at least 0.10" and just 22 of those 49 events involved rainfall of at least 0.25". Furthermore, there were just 6 calendar day events involving at least 1.00" of rainfall that collectively accounted for a full 11.53" or 71% of the total (including the Sept. 30th deluge).

This means that on average only 17% of the days in that 178 day span had any rain of "note" -- taken to be at least 0.10", or about once every 6 days.

Boring.

I suppose WOODY! and the LWX crew are happy, as are all those local weather-casters I've looooong since stopped watching, but I don't want to go off on that topic right now.

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I want to return to the whole topic of TSA "live nude image screening" versus groping (like a drunken late night at a gay bar) pat down thing -- esp. given what a difference of opinion at least three of my own friends have expressed.

However, as it is Thanksgiving and I had a nice evening and want to keep the tone of this entry upbeat, I shall refrain.

I'll talk about that in a subsequent entry.

East-West Highway at Colesville Road, Silver Spring, Md., 4:33PM, Nov. 25, 2010.

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It is 11:32PM now and NONE of my late night comfort TV shows are on, including The Golden Girls.

The Hallmark Channel has been in its "Countdown to Christmas" all - Christmas - movie frenzy for the past two weeks now and it probably won't end until early January. As for We TV, it's showing some show called "Downsized" -- no, it's not about losing weight.

So instead I just have tuned into my easy-instrumental-listening RCN channel 891. I'm rather tired and need to go to bed.

My good friend Quill and "Evelyn", who has lived quietly in the house for decades, Silver Spring, Md., 9:54PM, Nov. 25, 2010.

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I'm going into the office tomorrow, although I said I would be in around 1030AM. As it is, only about four of the 20 or so people who work in the main HQ office where I work will be there.

The D and 9th Street SW access point from / to the Elephant L'Enfant Plaza station is to be closed for "removal of hazardous substances" as part of some renovation. It is "just" supposed to last until Dec. 8th -- but in reality, this being Metro, this probably means Dec. 8, 2011.

It also means an extra 8 to 10 minutes of commuting time around / over / under (depending on how I go) the Amtrak / VRE / CSX train tracks that runs near by building and (along with I-395) severs off Southwest D.C. from the rest of Washington.

This is also where that out-of-control escalator inexplicably sped up several weeks ago, injuring some people.

Cobalt blue dusk outside my apartment building looking toward 16th Street across New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C., 5:23PM, Nov. 24, 2010.

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My mom and Ray are supposed to come into D.C. on Saturday and take me to lunch -- probably at the Washington Harbour area -- for my birthday. My actual birthday is tomorrow (Nov. 26th -- now just 20 minutes away). I turn the glorious age of 41.

What a dumb and pointless age to be.

The Thanksgiving dinner table earlier tonight as it was being set including with more chairs (there were actually 7 of us).

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OK, on that note, I think I'll end this entry. I need to go to bed with my box fan whirling, my window a/c on (I often have it on since it gets stuffy and warm in this old building even on cool nights), and under a pile of plush hippos and other plush stuffed animals.

G'night.

--Regulus

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