Knowing Which Way the Wind Blows

The last weekend of most every month, I play guitar (actually bass, now) at Christ the King Catholic Church. One of the other guitar players there is Ed Buckner, Channel 11’s weatherman. He’s a good singer and guitar player. He was telling me about some of the crazy people that blame him for the weather. Like he’s got some control over it. He actually told me that once a guy told him something to the effect of “I know the government’s got a big umbrella up there” or something.

Also recently I overheard someone expressing frustrated disdain for doctors, which got me thinking. People often disparage doctors and weathermen. I suspect that there are a few reasons for this: 1) both professions involve a great deal of technical knowledge that confound most people (hence causing them some measure of unconscious resentment, particularly among the those who are complete idiots), 2) both jobs are subject to the whims, chaos and complexities of nature (or the vagaries of God, depending who you ask), and 3) people wrongly assume that these fields are scientifically mechanistic. A mechanic can inspect a car and tell you with a great degree of accuracy how well it will run, whereas a weatherman can only make an educated guess about how the weather will behave, and a doctor can only make a diagnosis based in the data available. Both jobs present the challenge of reading signs within an enormous confluence of factors, reactions and influences.