Sunday, May 27, 2012

Why Are Men Fascinated With Weather?

Growing up in my home, I noticed that my father had an “obsession” with knowing the weather. He would listen to the radio, early in the morning, before any of us woke up. The first words out of his mouth was the weather report. But, it didn’t end there. He listened to the weather forecast what seemed like every hour on the hour for the updates. He would also make several trips during the day, to look out the window, and report on his observations. Maybe it was the fact that he worked outdoors in construction, that caused him to become interested in the weather. But, long after he retired, he was still listening and reporting what he learned to the rest of us.

And then there’s my brother, who has always worked indoors. He will call me from work to tell me about some bad weather brewing, that will hit us later in the week. I know he is being thoughtful, but I’m sure he must realize that with four televisions and a couple of radios, that the news has already gotten to me, if not by the media then by my husband. Still he has the obsession to warn me about the weather, something I can’t do anything about except wait and watch.

The preoccupation with the weather seems to go way back in time. Ancient civilizations named their Gods after different aspects of the weather. Thor, for example, was the Norse God of thunder and lightning and Apollo was the Roman God of the Sun. Then there was good old Benjamin Franklin, who wrote “Poor Richard’s Almanack,” which would forecast the weather for the year. I know Franklin was smart, but to forecast the weather for the year? Our weathermen can’t even get it right for tomorrow, with all their sophisticated instruments. There is nothing accurate about “acuweather, I often want to scream at my television set. So, maybe the “weather” is a manly obsession?

Why is this bugging me now? I’ve noticed my husband has a preoccupation with the weather. He too is carrying on the same way my father once did, by listening to the forecast several times a day and announcing it to the rest of the family. Lately, he has been going to the window and peeking through the blinds to observe the weather conditions. Like this morning, he peeked out and said, “It’s raining.” I didn’t have the heart to tell him I could hear the rain hitting the window. That’s one sound I’ve grown accustomed to over the years. Don’t get me wrong, I do appreciate the news in the morning, so I know how to dress for the day. However, after that, I am not really interested to know how many degrees the temperature has gone up at different points in the day. And, when it’s hot and humid, I think I would rather suffer from the heat in ignorance than to know the actual temperature, which only makes me feel hotter than I already am.

Of course, in the winter, when there is a chance of snow or a storm is brewing, then I don’t mind so much being kept informed of the forecast. My husband will listen to different radio and television stations and go with the one predicting the lowest amounts. It makes him feel better to do that, and then he tells me the lowest predictions so I feel better too. The problem is, as we all know, weather forecasts are far from accurate and one to two inches often turns into a blizzard, with 12 inches or more on the ground. What’s the point?  The weathermen can’t get it right, and then the men in my life listen all day, only to report to me all this incorrect information!

I just want to know if all men are preoccupied with the weather, or just the ones I know?

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