Wednesday, June 24, 2009

David Brinkley and D.C. Weather

The weather forecast for this weekend looks like the typical D.C. summer forecast...hazy, hot and humid. We've finally turned the corner from a rainy spring that would make a tropical rainforest native feel at home to the summer weather most D.C. residents expect.

One year at Jazz Fest, a New Orleans cabbie asked my friends and I where we were from. When we told him we were from D.C., he quipped "I bet you boys ain't used to heat and humidity like this". I tried to tell him it could get just as hot and humid here, albeit it only for a couple of months. After all, our Nation's Capital was built on a swamp. But, the cabbie would have no part of what I was saying.

I've often heard folks who live in the D.C. area say there really isn't a spring season here. Somehow, the weather seems to always go from chilly and wet to hot and humid, with not many "pretty spring days" in between. I know this sounds like a sweeping generalization, but I do remember seeing something years ago on TV that seems to support this belief.

Not too long after I got out of college, I was nursing a Sunday morning hangover and watching This Week With David Brinkley. I vividly remember David Brinkley's end of broadcast commentary that morning. Someone (I don't remember who) had just published a study on the best and worst U.S. cities for weather as it affected lifestyle. Somehow it didn't suprise me when Mr. Brinkley passed on the the nugget that Washington, D.C. was the worst weather city in the country. The study had a rather narrow criteria, the annual number of days when the sky was sunny and the temperature was in the 70's. According to the study, D.C. averaged 10 such days per year. Every spring, I somehow remember that snipet from This Week and I try to count how many sunny and 70s days we've had. I never seem to get past five.

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