Tuesday, December 15, 2015

The Endless Warmth of This Snowless December -OR- Entry #1776 and The Sound of No Music

View looking north from the Washington Monument on Dec. 13, 2015. Image by Erik Cox and reposted from his Flickr page to this CWG entry.

My apt. building is visible in this picture, or rather, it would be if the image resolution were higher.


An update on the abnormally warm weather that has December through the 14th running +8.1F above normal just in Washington, D.C. (as measured at KDCA) and with similar departures from average across much of the eastern half of the United States and eastern Canada.

It is 67F at KDCA with a 64F dew point at the 11PM EST hour on Dec. 14th.

Yes, you read that correctly.

That's within three degrees of the daily record high temp for Dec. 14th at KDCA, namely, 70F set on three occasions (1881, 1929, and 1931 -- all pre-KDCA D.C. records).

The actual high at KDCA today was 69F.

Sterling LWX actually conveniently put this in tonight's area forecast discussion (I've reformatted it for how I usually post these things on my blog):

Below is a list of record daily warm temperatures observed this past weekend as well as this Monday.

KBWI...71F (2015/1979)

KDCA...71F (2015/1889)
KBWI...72F (2015) (OLD RECORD 69F IN 1889)
KIAD...73F (2015) (OLD RECORD 71F IN 1984)


KIAD...53F (2001)

KIAD...69F (OLD RECORD 67F IN 2001)
KBWI...71F (TIED RECORD 1929/1881)

The other record high minimums for Dec. 14th are as follows:
KDCA: 58F (1901)
KBWI: 53F (1901)

Neither station broke those since the lows this morning were 53F and 52F, respectively.

Sterling (LWX) NWS radar loop in standard base mode reflectivity, 10:18PM - 10:56PM EST December 14, 2015.

As the radar loop above shows, there was at the 11PM hour the wussiest pencil-thin line of showers (as seen on the radar) trying to skirt the northern suburbs.


All I have to say is the following: For some reason, I can't seem find James "MOUNTAIN" Inhofe's snowball. Maybe Grandpa Munster Cruz hid it in his basement la-BOR-a-tory. Either that or Spot the Dragon accidentally melted it. Either way, the weather outside is practically something out of Currier and Ives -- if Currier and Ives had a Blade Runner Los Angeles November 2019 version.

Naturally, the suburban D.C. upper middle bourgeoisie -- as embodied in comments on the CWG site -- cannot get enough of this weather and they run right out to sit in snarled traffic to hightail it their nearest overcrowded mall where they can shop 'til they drop.

They do so while enjoying the fake mall snow next to the mall Santa with a line of deeply annoying children stretching 50 feet away from him, and all are (paraphrasing what the great Spanish philosopher José Ortega y Gasset said) DELIGHTED with themselves and their tastes and desires -- as they max out their 39.99% credit cards to buy Third World made forgettable consumer junk.

Hot, Flat, and Crowded, Indeed.

Busy aisles Target, Alexandria, Va., 2:45PM Dec. 13, 2015.

I went there with Dave J., and later we went to John Strongbow's Tavern in Old Town. The Target was mobbed but the store had a very efficient check out system. I was there to buy my twin 8-packs of Schick Xtreme 3 razors (I inadvertently said "Gillette" in this previous entry, but I've since corrected that). I also bought a gift for next Saturday night's party at Jake's place with its "White Elephant Exchange."

Speaking large African mammals and of this Target, this is the store where Flippo my plush hippo came into my life about 12 years ago.


As for what the other segments of the D.C. area population are thinking, I won't venture a guess. I suppose most folks like this record warmth.

People walking along the pedestrian promenade of Palmer Alley, Washington, D.C., 9:51PM December 11, 2015.

I don't know why this is called Palmer Alley. It is part of the giant CityCenterDC complex.

I was somewhat inebriated when I took this picture as I walked from Chinatown back toward Logan Circle. I had just finished a nearly 5 hour stint with Natan and another co-worker friend ("M") -- first at Old Ebbitt Grill and then at the National Press Club ("M" is a member) and some other unspecified place in Chinatown.

To be clear, I was supposed to meet M. but Natan contacted me to say he was in town ahead of his imminent departure to Colorado for a new job. It was probably the last time I'll ever seen Natan. Actually I was supposed to meet him and his friends again at a place on 14th Street but I stopped at Trade and then when I tried to get into that place, I wasn't allowed in, which ended the night.


NWS Climate Prediction Center (CPC) 8 to 14 day temperature probability outlook issued on Dec. 14th for the period Dec. 22 - 28, 2015.


Looking ahead, there is really no sign of any winter weather other than a momentary "back to normal" conditions this weekend. Also it is increasingly likely that there won't be any snow in Buffalo during the four days -- Dec. 25th - 29th -- that Gary and I are supposed to be there as our reprisal of last year's ill-fated snowless yuletide trip to Buffalo (itself a  failed reprisal of the snow-blitzed January 2014 trip).

The 0Z 12/15/2015 GFS showing 12-hr precip, mean sea level pressure, and 1000mb to 500mb thicknesses for the Lower 48 U.S. valid at hour 252, 12Z 12/25/2015.

In two words: Hopeless and useless for snow.


I've already let Gary know that I am not going to go if there is no snow. I'll pay him the $540 that I owe -- for airfare and the four nights at the downtown Hyatt Regency (that's the Christmas deal you can get). I'm hoping that the trip can be rescheduled for January when I think the pattern will have changed. However, that is unclear.

What I won't do is spend four days all miserable in drab Buffalo* with no snow. I will sooner just stay in D.C. Let me add, though, that between last year and this year, I am into Buffalo trips for nearly $1,100 (not counting what I spent there) to see snow -- and seen precisely none.

Yes, I realize this is very much a First World problem.

*That calls to mind the Rosalind Russell "Auntie Mame" line about Buffalo.

An unspecified residential street in Buffalo showing the snow-blitzed Nov. 2014 scene and a scene last week.

The main two changes -- other than the lack of snow, of course -- is that the streetlight is missing and one house had been painted gray. The electric green house intrigues me.

Of note, by the time Christmas 2014 rolled around and I was there, the snow was gone -- including the southern areas that were hit with such astonishing amounts.


Entry #1776 Factoidal Musings

This is entry #1776, which is probably as a good a time as any to repost a quote I put in this entry and that is attributed to Sigmund Freud: "America is a mistake, admittedly a gigantic mistake, but a mistake nevertheless."

I'm not asserting that to be the case but simply stating the quote.


Anyway, I was going to post more but I'm so tired now that I'm just going to bed, except for this  ...

I had a good gym workout tonight, although I have to note that the YMCA Anthony Bowen is at least for now no longer playing ANY music on the floor and it is probably because of me because of what happened last Monday.

That was NOT my intention and I intend to send an email saying that. I think the trainers, or at least some of them, hate me now. I'm a hated figure and the crotchety indeterminate aged man.

Look, all I wanted was that there NOT be hip hop music with the endless, hectoring, offensive lyrics of the sort BITCHES AND HO'S, BITCHES AND HO'S, GET ME MY BITCHES AND HO'S, NOW I'M GONNA POP A CAP IS HIS ASS AS I'M ALL HIGH IN MY FLY RIDE ON THE SOUTH SIDE and that kind of shit that's very inappropriate for the YMCA -- and is only on the first place because a particular trainer is playing DJ and in the process, violating the Y's own rules about the music.

You know, there is such a thing a happy medium -- something between the Young Money Entertainment crowd and Barry Manilow.

As it is, at least three-quarters of the people at the gym have their own music to which they listen with their ear buds, so this isn't an issue for them.

OK, that's all for now. I'm planning on going to Macy's tomorrow night to get presents (birthday and Christmas) for my mom. She is visiting me on Friday. I'm unsure if I'm going to go to the Metro Center one or venture out to Pentagon City or Ballston. In any event, I might not update the blog until Wednesday.


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