FEATURED IMAGE SOURCE:           news.nationalgeographic.com

The National Geographic website ran a story on October 16 about the extraordinary attributes of the tenth named storm of the year, Ophelia. The author, Elaina Zachos, wrote:

”Cyclonic winds kicked up dust from the North African Sahara, spraying sand into the English sky. From there, the desert dust scattered the sun’s rays into longer wavelengths, giving the sky an eerie, somewhat-apocalyptic hue.”

Ophelia, storm,

Source: World News Now

Ophelia, What Went Wrong?

It was an event for the record books, but the records weren’t about casualties, wind speed, rainfall, storm surge. The big story was not one of how many people lost power or were displaced. Headlines did not focus on the cost of damages. The notably weird phenomena generated by Ophelia included Ireland’s first severe weather alert in history. In addition, an unusual spate of wildfires were spawned by the powerful winds that fanned the Iberian Peninsula. The Portuguese and the Spaniards could not recall ever seeing such events before, nor had they ever heard of such from their parents and grandparents.

The scientific discussions mostly concluded that the warmer Atlantic must be the culprit. Ah…climate change rears its head once more! The topic just won’t go away.

It’s Not Nice to Fool Mother Nature (but OK if she wants to fool us)

It occurs to me that, if Mother Nature happened to be a “real person” she might have a sense of humor. If so, she might, from time to time, play around with our heads, to make us wonder what’s really going on. In normal social interaction, that could prompt some to launch a counter punch, i.e. to “get back” at Her, in a sense. Well, human meddling with the environment isn’t the right way to respond. This brings up a recollection of an old TV commercial that was very silly, having to do with Mother Nature. It actually has nothing to do, whatsoever, with Hurricane Ophelia, or with weird weather. I just thought I’d give readers something to ponder, and perhaps make you laugh. Enjoy!

Chiffon Soft Stick Margarine (TV commercial, 1977) (YouTube video source www.FuzzyMemories.tv)

Margarine is produced from corn oil… hey, I knew I’d bring the subject back to commodities!!!

-Scott Mathews

Post Script: Here is “Ophelia” performed by The Band, in Martin Scorsese’s classic concert film “The Last Waltz” (1978).

YouTube video posted by Tskeshi Kawaguchi (April 18, 2009)


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