If the so called experts are correct, while you're reading this there will be several inches of snow outside your window right now.
That's because the national Weather Service is predicting a pretty heavy snowstorm to hit our area sometime Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.
But at the time I'm banging these keys on my keyboard (and anyone who has been within a city block of me while I type would agree, banging, or better yet, pounding is an apt description of what I do to a keyboard), it's a beautiful, sunny day.
The current temperature is somewhere between really nice and lay on the grass under a tree, pretending to read while you take a nap.
And that's just four degrees below lay on the grass under a tree with an ice chest.
Anyway, back to my point - it's supposed to snow on Wednesday.
I got to thinking, a good portion of my job is facts - getting them right, checking them, and, unfortunately, explaining the why's and how's when I get them wrong.
It's not easy getting things right. The first step is staying focused and listening, something I'm not very good at.
In the 10 or so minutes that I have been working on these few paragraphs, I have been distracted several times.
I've answered 19 text messages, none of which were very important - a co-worker was looking for a wi-fi password, my sister let me know my nephew has a new job in a California restaurant (she's not sure if they serve hot dogs though, which could be a deal breaker for me), and my friend James is now eating lunch without me because I'm too busy to leave the office.
Way too much work to do.
I also checked email several times, only to learn I could be hairier or less hairy, smaller or bigger, taller or shorter, richer and happier - all with the click of a mouse.
Where was I? Oh yeah, I'm easily distracted. Someone should make a pill for that.
If any of you have seen me do an interview or been interviewed by me, you my have noticed my need to record stuff. This is of course, so I can get my facts straight.
That, and I can't read my own writing.
Even with my handy little recorder, I get stuff wrong every once in a while and it can be a pretty big deal. But what about the guys who predict the weather?
I didn't see a "Corrections and Clarifications" section in the paper to explain why I got rained on the day I decided to wash my car.
OK, I lied. I've never washed my car, but you get my point.
What about other jobs? How accurate, how consistent do you have to be?
Years ago I had the opportunity to watch one of the greats play the game of baseball - Rickey Henderson of the Oakland A's.
He was, beyond a shadow of a doubt, one of the greatest base runners of all time.
In his career, from 1979 through 2003, he stole 1,406 bases, hundreds above the number two guy, Lou Brock.
But guess what? You know who got caught stealing more than anyone else?
Yep, slick Rickey who leads the majors with 335.
That means that he failed at least 25 percent of the time he was doing what he got paid to do.
And he was paid well, about a million and a half bucks a year on average.
I got a chance to meet Henderson on a few occasions, and let me tell you, as nice a guy he was, I don't think he could sit through too many council meetings.
Back to the weather, guys.
According to salary.com (and as I've said before, if it's on the interweb it must be true), the average pay for a meteorologist is about $70,000 a year.
In Phoenix, where 362 days a year you could say "It's going to be a hot one today," the average is about 60 grand. And when you're wrong, you could say "Well, at least we got some relief from the heat today."
All for a six and four zeros.
Remember that next time I call little "Sally" Robert by mistake.
Oh, and if it's sunny on Wednesday, I want a raise.
Posted: Friday, February 22, 2013
Article comment by:
IF YOU SPENT FOUR YEARS IN COLLAGE AND HAD A PHD IN METEROLOGY WHAT DO YOU THINK THE SALERY SHOULD BE? $ 70,000 SEEMS LOW. SPEAKING OF SALERIES, WHY DON'T YOU FIND OUT WHY THE CITY MANAGER OF CHINO VALLEY EARNS MORE THAN THE CHIEF OF POLICE IN PRESCOTT