* Welcome to The Big Jewel, your source for the pure science of weather data, as well as personality-driven sunniness and hype. But don't let us steal any thunder from this week's piece by Jeremy Blachman, his first for us.

Weather Or Not

By: Jeremy Blachman

“The announcement [last month] that the Weather Channel Companies, owners of television’s Weather Channel and weather.com, would buy one of its rivals, Weather Underground, set off howls of displeasure on social media platforms and around water coolers across the nation…In the eyes of Weather Underground’s ardent fans, the Weather Channel appears to represent the wrong kind of weather information: personality-driven sunniness and hype, they say, rather than the pure science of data.” — The New York Times

“…and welcome back to Weather In The Morning, with Storm and Sunny. Can you believe these clouds, Storm?”

“No, I cannot believe them, Sunny. I told those guys in the room with the map that I would not let them once again ruin our morning show with cloudy talk. And yet here they are, pushing their bad weather agenda on us.”

“You know there are people out there just waiting for clouds like these. People waiting to tell you that clouds mean rain — and lots of it. But we are not going to be sucked into the vortex of wind and precipitation that some quote-unquote meteorologist is warning us about. Clouds don’t mean anything — not on this show! In America, we don’t let a few clouds cause rain.”

“No, we don’t, Sunny. The America I grew up in didn’t let the fear of storm systems coming up the coast change their weekend plans. My America doesn’t get dragged along by the fear of what seems to be some sort of large circular formation in the corner of our radar screen — not that I’m trained to read the radar screen. That thing is a radar screen, right?”

“No, I think it’s just the window. And that circular formation is in fact right outside.”

“In any case — I’m trained to read people, not radar. And the people are telling me it’s a beautiful day.”

“It is a beautiful day, Storm, although we are getting word from the control room that there does seem to be some kind of severe weather event that’s been coming up from the Gulf and heading straight toward us.”

“The Gulf of Mexico?”

“Yep, I believe that may very well be the one.”

“Of course — there we go again, Sunny! Yesterday it was weather from Canada, today it’s Mexico, tomorrow it’ll be who knows where. Probably China. I’ve said it before, and I’m going to keep on saying it until somebody listens: we need to keep this foreign weather out. I don’t care what kind of fence we have to build or how tall it has to be to get around those clouds but it has to be a priority.”

“And yet we’re the only ones talking about it…”

“One day everyone’s going to open their eyes and realize it’s too late. I’m not afraid to say it. The weather from the rest of the world is taking over. We need American weather, creating American jobs and American floods and whatever else it is weather creates. I don’t want to hear the arguments from those fancy-titled meteorologists…”

“Storm, those meteorologists do seem to be telling me that we have a severe weather advisory in this very…”

“No — stop — I don’t want to hear it! We have to stand tall against this stuff. Those think-they’re-so-special meteorologists…”

“You know, it crosses my mind, Storm: we say that word a lot here. Meteorologist. Let’s get it up on the screen. No? It’s not there. Okay, we’ll get it up later. We say it all the time, and yet I don’t think either of us has any idea what it means. I know I don’t.”

“Me neither, Sunny. And — wait — I am hearing in my earpiece that we need to take a look over toward the control room. They seem to be screaming something about a tornado, or a — what’s that sign they’re holding up — mandatory evacu–. I don’t have my glasses. Oh, whatever! What were we talking about? Meteorology nonsense, right? And how that word has absolutely no meaning for either of us.”

“Right, right. And looking into the control room now — it does not appear that we still have a control room, Storm. The building appears to have sheared right in half by…uh…I’m not really sure. Perhaps a cloud.”

“That’s a good one, Sunny. In all seriousness, we should probably save the meteorology discussion for another time, because after the break we’re going to show you how weather can turn your brand new windows into beautiful sculptures made from broken glass.”

“Ooh, exciting. That, and recipes you can make when the power goes out, all coming up in the next hour.”

“Plus tips on getting the most out of living in a house that no longer has a roof. Stay tuned…as we broadcast from outside. A very special day here on Weather In The Morning! We’ll be right back.”