Saturday, November 7, 2009

Whistle'n Good

This Glorious Fall Day made me whistle out loud! It wasn't a tune, per se...rather a punctuation mark of the audio variety...think Hawkeye's whistle in Robert Altman's movie M*A*S*H.

I hunkered down yesterday, cozy inside, avoiding the damp gray reality of the little system that brushed by to the north of the Inland Valley. This afternoon, I caught up with the shopping chores.

I did a little detour through my nearest Verizon Wireless Store to get a hands-on impression of Motorola's new Android-powered Smartphone, the Droid. Wow! No wonder I felt the whistle urge! It's a totally CrushWorthy Device.

Motorola's Droid is the Alpha Male of Touchscreen Phones. I'll go so far to say the coming Battle Royale of Droid vs iPhone will shake out along the line between the sexes...yes the Droid is a Man's Smartphone...hard edges and ready to MultiTask. The iPhone serves the distaff side of the market smoothly and smartly in a comfortable way that's more nurturing...if you will.

Recraetion accomplished, I buckled down and did my real supplies...a tank of gas...I trolled the parking lot of the Health Food Store without luck, and shopped instead at my favorite Boutique Grocery Store.

Everyone I encountered on my Shopping Expedition was wearing a smile, and displayed their Sunny Dispositions...whistle, indeed!

I'm trying a couple of new recipes for Thanksgiving this week...Triple Ginger Cookies, and a roasted veggie dish named "Jewel Roasted Vegetables". This year, I'm going back to only two flavors of pie...I added Sweet Potato Pie a couple of years ago, but this year Pumpkin and Pecan will soldier on without the Johnny-Come-Lately Southern Favorite.

Later this evening, my sister and her husband are coming to the Ancestral Digs for dinner and a movie. I'm just doing Burgers on the BBQ, but I'm reprising SturgeUrge's Grilled Eggplant Parmigiana, so there's something for everybody.

I'll probably whistle while I bake the Ginger's another Good Day!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Cozy Inside

Today street is damp in front of the Ancestral Digs. A fine mist is the sum total of the latest weather "event" unless you're a Surfer or Recreational Crab Fisherman.

The NWS Marine Forecast posts a Small Craft Advisory for Hazardous Seas from 4PM PST Today, through Sunday Afternoon. The forecast says Northwest Swells to 19ft Saturday...Typical of the Sport Dungeness Crab Season Opener. There always seems to be big seas, bad weather, or both for the Local Crab Opener.

The Main Event, so to speak, is a huge organized Low Pressure System that's churning away in the Gulf of Alaska. With the Entrenched Jetstream staying well to our north, only the Big Ocean Swell generated by the system is impacting NorCal widely. Oh sure, there's real rain falling in the northernmost reaches of California. I was on the phone this morning with SisterSweetly, who reports heavy rain behind The Redwood Curtain. But here in the Inland Valley the fine mist that's dampened the street is just a part of the widely scattered showers across the Bay Area and Sacramento Valley.

There's even rain up in the High Sierra today. Boreal's Mountain Webcam shows a dozen or so folks sliding down their hill in a fine drizzle. Now, more than a week has passed without freezing temps at "Pass Level" (Pass Level is 7227ft, referring to Donner Pass on I-80)

I procrastinated long enough to view both Noon News products from the Bay Area and Sacramento. The disappointment displayed yesterday by the WeatherReaders appears to have morphed into resignation today...they've hitched their hopes to "a chance of light showers Tuesday"

Pity them...once the roads dry, we'll be continuing down the road towards Winter...all in good time. I plan to enjoy the ride!

Thursday, November 5, 2009


I watched the excellent Luc Besson movie, "The Fifth Element" for the umpteenth time a few weeks ago. I have a long and storied relationship with this film. The reason I bought my first DVD Player was to own the film on DVD. It was 1998..."The Fifth Element" was available in Widescreen only on DVD. The Pan&Scan VHS version wasn't going to cut it. TFE enjoyed some of the earliest realistic Full Motion Computer Generated Images in popular cinema. Reportedly costing $100K/minute, the scenes of the deep city canyon-lands, full to the bursting point with flying cars, buses, trucks and taxicabs were Total Eye Candy, and deserved to be seen in their entirety!

The Bad Guy, Mister Zorg...(portrayed by the excellent Gary Oldman) was repeatedly frustrated in his Evil Plan to sell out Earth to Evil for whatever twisted reason the film didn't bother to mention. Near the explosive climax, Mister Zorg sighs, and says (with rising frustration and anger, and a rising voice) "I am very disappointed!"

Today I watched the Local TV News at Noon...twice. Once from San Francisco's FOX afilliate, KTVU Channel 2, and once from Sacramento's NBC Outlet, KCRA Channel 3. There was a common theme to the weather forecasts proffered by both stations...Disappointment!

The eight year-old's lost puppy moment, again! The rain the weather-folks were hyping last night at 11PM, had become "a slight chance of showers in the North Bay/Northern Sacramento Valley" by noon today.

I read the Forecast Discussions from Reno and Sacramento twice before noon, and I was far from disappointed. The observations showed up in the lessening of precipitation and increased wind...that's it...maybe a little flurry or two this evening...All north of Interstate 80.

Since Sunday, I've tried without success to get a handle on the "Mavericks Surfer Weatherdudes" but so far I'm drawing a Big Fat Zero! I want to hear about the method they used to predict "30 Major Storms coming onshore in NorCal between now and March 31st" This sounds like the Annual Hurricane Season Outlook from the National Hurricane Center, but I'm unsure of exactly which department of NOAA the "Mavericks Surfer Weatherdudes" hail from!

"Mavericks Surfer Weatherdudes" have a strong grasp on the Marketing Side of "The Weather"...much like the TV Weatherfolks do, but I don't think I'd make any bankroll decisions on their forecast! As I do with the TV Weather, I'll watch for the visuals, enjoy their presentation skills (or lack thereof) and get the Real Story from the NWS Website's Forecast Discussion. It's very American to bypass the Middleman, after all!

If the "Mavericks Surfer Weatherdudes" have "built a better mousetrap", one that accurately models the upcoming Rainy Season, why hide it in the vapors? Hold a Press Conference, put your "30 Major Storms" on the table, and prepare to enjoy the hordes "beating a path to your door"!

What's that? I'm only hearing crickets...

Signed, Disappointed...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


"When you wish upon a star"...goes the Walt Disney chestnut..."Makes no difference who you are"...Anything your heart desires, Will come to you"

I've always heard the lyric as: "Makes no difference where you are..." so that's what plays in my head when I reflect on wishes. I've noticed a surfeit of wishes lately, from the weatherfolks in all quarters. Wishing for a change in the weather...any change, really...can't Mother Nature please get on with it? I'm bored with all this pleasant fall weather, they cry.

Not me, no sir! I'm loving this stuff! On TV and radio, the teasing of another "Big Change" fills every available second of empty airtime. I know the poor WeatherReaders are bored with their routines, but leave me alone already! I read the same NWS Forecast Discussions that they do, and I'm just not seeing it! Since when did "No agreement in the models equal "Big Pattern Change"?

The only pattern I've observed in the Mountains this past week is the steady rise of temperatures! Since Boreal turned off their Snowmaking Fans before they reopened their one lift and trail on October 30th, the mercury has only flirted with the mid-30's overnight. The trend has been slightly warming, with overnight lows in the low-40's and afternoon highs in the mid-60's

CorduroyPlanet's Northern Alliance has checked in citing their cold temps, but hey...they're up by the 45th Parallel...halfway to the North Pole, fercrissakes! Last evening, as I was rolling the trash and recycling out to the curb, the North Wind warmed the Inland Valley, and my's the Fairweather Wind after all, and the day's high was in the upper-70's.

It's like everyone wants to harsh my mellow or something! I know I'm not the only one who's enjoying this calm before the storm. I can do without the Bum's Rush blather, thank you very much! Today is November 4th...that means that Hurricane Season ended four days ago!

What's all this Revving Up about? It's not just the weather either. I'm seeing it across the board...politics, Regional Conflicts, sports, crime...all of it! It seems like some unseen hand turned the volume up to eleven!

Just quit it! I'll turn my own volume to eleven when the snow flies, or the Manmade starts to pile up! In the meantime, I'm just gonna set my Cruise Control to slow, and take the time to smell the roses...and water them twice a week!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Thoughts On The Beach

I'm feeling like an iguana on a Mexican beach today. It's officially balmy here in the Inland Valley. I made it a point last night to watch Sacramento's 11 o'clock news, and yes...Boreal's Costume-Clad Patrons did get to mug for the MiniCams and the viewing public.

But that's not the News...rather it's just confirmation of the turning of Earth through the Heavens leading us Northern Hemisphere dwellers into Winter...

Closer to my Mountain, Halloween Costumes at Boreal are just another touchstone on our way through Fall. So what was remarkable on the 11 o'clock Newscast? I was struck by the demeanor of the Weekend Weatherman who wrapped up his forecast saying "No rain on the horizon for another two weeks, at least"...

I was expecting what he said, but I was taken aback by the way he said it. The poor guy sounded like a 7 year old who'd just lost his new puppy. He was almost crestfallen...discouraged even, and he sounded deflated.

So there I am...12 hours later, dressed in shorts and a Hawaiian Shirt, listening to KFBK's Farmer Fred Radio Show. In full Beach-Mode, I'm reading the Sunday Paper while waiting to fetch my Mom outside of the Church. Can you imagine my surprise when I heard Fred's guest, The Sacramento Bee's Garden Writer Debbie Arrington say: " weather forecasters are saying there's going to be at least 30 Major Storms come through Northern California's Coast between now and March 31st..."

I alerted abruptly, and paid close attention as she said the forecasters were "Mavericks Surf Contest Guys" Hmmm, back to the my mind anyway.

Mavericks is the New Big Wave Mecca for surfers Worldwide. Just North of Half Moon Bay, the waves at Mavericks can reach the mythical 50ft size during Winter Storms.

Surf Fans and Weather Geeks can sign up for Big Swell Alerts at theMavSurfer Website...after you sign up, you'll receive the same Contest Swell Alert that the Surf Competitors get in advance of the Big Mavericks Tourney.

Thinking beach thoughts, I realized again that Surfing, like Skiing or Snowboarding, are just another type of Gravity Sport. Here in NorCal, all are best practiced in Winter...I don't have a clue about the "Mavericks Surf Contest Weatherguys"

Patience...Winter will come soon enough.