Today will be my last day at work for a while. I am finishing this year and beginning next year on vacation, the way it was intended! As usual I may blog during my time away so sign up for email alerts if you want to be notified if/when I update the blog. Once again I will be spending New Year's in Chicago with Faye, my Father, and fantastic family friends. We've got my security alarm, 2 vicious attack dogs, one vigilant Shih Tzu, an angry cat, and family staying at our house while gone…so don't try to break in!
This morning and yesterday morning I was finally…FINALLY…able to listen to my IPod on the way to work. One of the many fantastic presents that Faye got me was an IPod cable for my car. So now I am no longer a slave to the stale corporate play lists of local radio. And sadly this week I have also not listened to "Coast to Coast A.M.", which might actually be part of Faye's plot to keep me among the sane. Now that I think about it…that may have been the ulterior motive for Faye to get me the cable. I smell another conspiracy…
While I am away if there is something you want to say on the blog still send feedback. If I get enough feedback I will certainly do a "Feedback Friday", even though I will be on vacation. And if I do enough feedback maybe I can take back the vacation day and use it another time!
Alright. I'm out! Have a great New Year…be safe…
For those of you that bemoan our cold start to the Winter…there is good news to finish the year. It looks as though we are getting a warm stretch to wrap things up this week. The last day of the year should be in the 50's. Of course 2011 will bring us right back into the 30's on Saturday. So enjoy the beachy, yet wet, weather while you can!
We had a very good Christmas break. We spent time with family and friends. There were gifts exchanged, although I always down play that side of the holiday. And there was food eaten, which I always up-play.
Friday in Mattoon saw the much anticipated reopening of Villa Pizza. On my way home from work Friday afternoon I stopped in to pre-order my pizza pie for later that night. They officially opened the doors at 4, but were letting people come by or call to get in their orders earlier. I'm very happy I chose to stop in. I set my pizza order to be picked up at 6. I showed up at Villa around 5:40…and stood in line for about an hour. Eventually they got my pie ready and I was home by 7. We devoured the pizza in a short amount of time…and it was fantastic!
But there were people that showed up right when they opened the doors at four, and when I left a little before 7 those people were still waiting on their pizzas! The very cool thing was that everyone seemed to understand that Villa would be incredibly busy. So no one got really agitated. There was even a lot of laughter in the line. And to me that was a Christmas Miracle!
Glad to have you back in business, Villa Pizza!
This morning I am wearing my Santa Claus tie that I try to wear every Christmas season at least once. The tie's previous owner was a dear, dear family friend named Ray. He was a special dude and passed on a few years ago. I tend to be sentimental when it comes to things, and a lot of what I own now is from people that impacted me that have moved on to whatever is next for us. Ray had a fantastic clothing collection and I was given a tie. It makes me happy to wear it. Ray was…fabulous.
A couple of my friends got in touch with me yesterday to ask if I was alright. They were concerned that I was flopping off the deep end after they read the blog yesterday! Heh. I told them that I am indeed alright, and not getting fitted for a tin foil hat just yet. It just so happens that the unknown interests me. Conspiracy theories interest me. The idea that there is "something going on that you don't know about" very much interests me. I don't really think there is a handful of elite wealthy people that rules the entire world. I'm sure there are secret societies of sorts, but not the kind that can pull off a shadow government. But then again I also believe that most anything is possible.
I will admit that this morning while listening to ESPN Radio I had to actively force myself not to switch over to "Coast to Coast A.M." That show fascinates me. But I didn't want to come in this morning to blog after listening to it again. At that point my friends might consider having me committed! But again…I assure you I am doing well. It's just that often times the last thing I listen to on the way to work is what is on my mind when I do the blog. So when I listen to "C to C A.M.", as the kids call it, that I am still processing what I've heard while I am typing the blog. And when I find it very interesting I blog about it.
I'm glad to get that out of the way! If you are travelling today you will be better served the earlier you can leave. Our area will start to see the heavier snow as we get into the afternoon. If you are headed southwest from here you will be driving through some pretty nasty stuff. If you are headed east you might get out ahead of everything if you leave this morning. Bottom line…roads are going to be dangerous, especially with the added traffic. I don't bust out with deadly serious stuff often on this blog…but it is days like these with inclement weather and thousands of extra cars on the roads where we hear stories of 15 or 20 car pileups on the interstates. Please…please…please…don't be one of those cars.
There isn't much feedback this week, which is what I get when I scare people with links to secret society speeches! But admit it…deep down…don't you love it??
From Bart in Champaign (12/17/10):
Hmmm, I wasn't aware Michael Vick was an alien. I wonder if that affects his status of playing in the NFL.
Unfortunately for Vick, my friend, he isn't an alien. And that means he had no legitimate reason to mutilate his animals. At least the aliens are doing it for research! But I still think his story of redemption has been fun this season.
From David in Altamont (12/21/10):
I don't care how many layers there are, as long as none of them have that nasty white stuff in them. LOL
Heh. Sorry, David. We are going to see a decent amount of snow by tomorrow morning!
From Nicole in Decatur (12/22/10):
Hi Greg! I just wanted to let you know that I too think Denzel is a GREAT actor of our time and I really enjoyed the Book of Eli. I don't normally like movies of that nature but I found myself watching it during a very long flight to China and I liked it, really liked it. I didn't see the ending coming and that twist, wow! In fact, I liked the movie so much, I watched it again with my husband (and didn't give away the twist, which was hard for me to do!) and he liked it too. I have talked to some people that didn't like it, thought it was too slow or just didn't get it. Anyways...I just thought I would give you my 2 cents on the movie. Oh yeah, I like when you talk about Coast to Coast on the blog. My husband also listens to that on the way to work and he usually tells me the interesting stories. Everytime I try to listen though, it's nothing too wierd or creepy or whatever...guess I just have bad timing! Merry Christmas to you and yours!!
I may watch it again in the next few days. Like you said…Denzel is GREAT.
And thanks for the support about "Coast to Coast". Although I can hear the collective groan from my friends saying, "Don't encourage him!!!". Heh.
I do need to thank my friend Scott in Virden for the fudge. He has this fantastic recipe he got from his Father…and the fudge literally melts when it hits your tongue. You just put it in your mouth…savor it…and swallow. You don't even need to chew! Thanks, Scott! And yes…I did share it with my coworkers. Even Tara had some!
Have a great Christmas weekend, all! Be safe…
Many, many years ago I remember talking to my Mom about JFK. She was a fan of his, and seemed to believe in him. Mom mentioned something that always stuck with me about JFK. She mentioned that in the year or so before he died JFK made a speech where he mentioned that there were things the American people did not know that would astonish us. If I am recalling this correctly she also said that he said he was planning to let us know whatever it is that would astonish us. But then he was killed before he had the chance.
So for years now I will occasionally look for a JFK reference to that which my Mom was speaking. And this morning I think I may have stumbled onto something at least close. I was listening to "Coast to Coast A.M." again this morning on my way to work. George had a guest on that mentioned JFK's "Secret Societies" speech. It intrigued me…so when I came into the station this morning I Googled "JFK Secret Societies Speech". It turns out this speech is on YouTube, and JFK made the speech to a newspaper press corps of sorts just a couple of weeks before he died.
So here is the link to the speech. It's around 5 ½ minutes long. Once you listen to the speech think about what happens on the first day for a new President. It has happened to all of them…they are brought into a meeting where they are told what is really happening in the world. I remember seeing video of President Obama just after he left that meeting and he had a different look on his face. It was a look of "Holy crap I wish they hadn't told me all of that!" And it seemed like he was struggling to look like he hadn't just learned everything that he learned.
What if what happened to President Obama, and Presidents Bush, Clinton, Bush, and Reagan, etc, was that they were told about who is really running the world? Many people think that there is one large "shadow government" that consists of a "World Bank" that really runs the show. They say that the goal of this secret society is to eventually divide us into the super wealthy elite and the lower class workers. Now think about where we are really headed in our economy and class structure in this country. Sounds like we are headed in that direction now, doesn't it?
Now I am not suggesting that I believe in this stuff…and I am not saying that I don't. But listen to JFK's speech and tell me what he said almost 50 years ago doesn't hold true today. And if what he was saying does happen to be true…wouldn't that give such a "shadow government" a lot of motive to end the President's life?
Tomorrow is "Feedback Friday"! Get your thoughts in now to make the cut for tomorrow morning!
Will there be a planet Earth 2 years from today? Will things fall apart on us on December 21, 2012? Some say yes. But why can't people assume that IF things change for us on that date that the changes will be good? When people make these predictions do you ever notice that they are rarely positive? I didn't mention the date on the blog yesterday because for some reason I decided to turn into a "serious meteorologist" and drop some weather stuff on you. But today I feel I can mention that yesterday was two years before what will probably become a media frenzy in about a year and a half. And then we will "enjoy" a six month countdown to the "End of the World 2012". It'll be a media bonanza. Can't you just hear the promos voiced by James Earl Jones??
For those of you as yet unaware…some people think the world is going to end on 12/21/12. The Mayans made a calendar thousands of years ago…and I think that is the last day on their calendar. And since they did not see fit to put 12/22/12 on their calendar it is being interpreted by some to mean that the Mayans think the world is going to end. Yet again another example of someone reading something written millennia ago and taking their own meaning from it, without regard for what was actually happening at the time the stuff was written. And let's not mention the fact that some mathematicians seriously dispute the accuracy of the calendar conversion to "our time". But it should be fun to see how many nuts make really bad decisions based on their "knowledge" that the world is going to end on a certain day. You might actually be able to get some great deals on things from people that assume they won't be around on 12/22/12. It's an "End of the World SALE!!! EVERYTHING MUST GO!!! THE MANAGER HAS GONE CRAZY…GET SOME CRAZY DEALS!!!"
Sorry. I got carried away. By the way…go back and read yesterday's blog. Remember the weather what-if about freezing rain? Make the temperature around or below freezing between 3500 and 4000 feet or so and we would have snow.
I saw "The Book of Eli" the other day. It stars Denzel Washington, who I think is one of his generation's very best actors. It's another Apocalyptic tale. You know…we destroy the Earth with bombs and stuff…and there are people that survive. This movie had an interesting take, though, which I won't break down for you so I don't ruin the movie. But there was one line in the movie that stuck with me. It's something that I always try to do…but sometimes forget. I've forgotten again lately and this movie brought it back to mind. It's a very simple mantra for "good living".
"Do better for others than you do for yourself."
On the IPod right now...Bach..."Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring". Splendid. Technically the name is "Cantata #147, BWV 147". Do what you will with this information.
Today's blog might be more weather intensive…because it seems more important this week. My drive to work this morning was wet, but not frozen. When I went to bed yesterday evening there was talk of a freezing rain advisory. Fortunately for most of us it was just too warm for anything to freeze. You get into Ford and Iroquois counties and you might see a little freezing drizzle or fog this morning. But South of that things should just be foggy, drizzly, and wet…but not frozen.
This is a difficult time of the year to forecast. The atmosphere is comprised of layers of air. And there are almost always different things happening at each level or layer. This time of the year, and in the Spring, when we are transition from warm to cold, or vice versa, it gets pretty tough sometimes to make the call of what we are going to have in terms of precipitation. Just a degree or two difference at any of these lower layers of the atmosphere can make the difference between snow, rain, freezing rain (ice), sleet, etc…or that lovely combination we like to call "wintery mix".
For instance…say we are expecting moisture of some kind tomorrow. (We are not…this is an example.) It looks like it is going to be 31 degrees at the surface where we reside. So you'd think the moisture would hit us as snow, right? Well…no…not in this case. Because around 3500 to 4000 feet above us the temperature is about 36 degrees. So as the moisture travels towards us it will be too warm to be frozen…which means it will be rain up there. And it will travel through our frozen air too fast to crystallize. But then the rain hits the surface where it is below freezing…the water will turn into ice. Freezing rain.
For those of you concerned about a White Christmas this year…the chances are getting better. Aside from today the temperature will be colder than or right about freezing for the rest of the week. So we shouldn't melt much if we can keep some snow through today. Plus we are starting to see a chance for a measurable snow Thursday night through Friday night. Some are saying light snow and others are saying several inches. I am saying it is just too soon to comfortably say right now. But the situation bears watching, especially with so many people planning to travel with our weekend holiday this year.
Winter begins this afternoon officially a little after 5:30. For you Wiccans out there…say something nice to Mother Earth today, as if you wouldn't anyway.
Crap. I just turned this back into a weather blog. Sorry about that! We'll get back to solving the world's problems again tomorrow…
So I had a little time this morning. Seems like I could use that time to blog. Gizmo goes to the groomer in a bit. He's lounging in the chair next to me, blissfully unaware of the shock he will have in just a little while. As far as I know he does pretty well at the groomer, though. So perhaps he will enjoy his time away.
There wasn't a special reason to take the day off today. I had the vacation day to burn by the end of the year...so here we are. I'll likely continue my cleaning frenzy that began in the kitchen a couple of hours ago. There will probably be some Madden '10 (vids) happening later. And of course I will have to get in the P90X effort later this afternoon. In between I'll do some laundry and probably vaccuum. Yes...the life of a television folk hero.
Our friend Kelly, who I am starting to think is really a watchdog for the people, sent me another link last week. This one is another disturbing view of the world around us. The website she references is actually one that I visited a while ago. It contains information gathered in a 2002 study of our environment. The website is pretty user-friendly. So if you want to see who was polluting your area to start this century...hit this link!
So I was listening to stories of animal mutilations done by aliens on the way to work this morning and it got me to thinking. I've been posting a little "Coast to Coast A.M." stuff on the blog lately. This blog is generally about what I am thinking at any given moment. I catch this radio show on my way to work many mornings. So I think about the topics on this radio show once in a while. And since many times it is the last thing outside of work that's on my mind before I blog…I put this stuff on the blog. I have no idea if you find it interesting, which is why I don't do it more. Some of you have commented on it, but that doesn't mean most of you find it interesting. Maybe I am starting to crack a bit…but I find this stuff fascinating.
I also find it fascinating that people will believe in one all powerful male being that reportedly created everything we know based on what they've read in a book that was written some 2000 years ago, and rewritten and retranslated countless times by whomever was in charge at the time. Yet some of these same people scoff at the idea that we may not be alone in this universe. But I don't want to get into a theological discussion this early in the morning. And no…I am not mocking anyone for what they believe. And this is not a declaration of what I believe. I'm just saying that some peoples' beliefs in one thing, and narrow-mindedness to another thing, is simply fascinating to me.
Bottom line I guess is that I am starting to believe that we've had the wool pulled over our eyes about something large around here. And I hope that we are the generation that gets to find out what this is all about. Some people believe we will get answers of some kind in 2012. I don't know about that…it sounds a little crackpot to me. But I hope something happens…and soon.
From Colby in Assumption (12/10/10):
Greg, like i blogged earlier, you are serious when you need to be. This weekend, we are having some serious weather issues. You were all business when talking this morning about it. Just like I said in my blog, you are serious when you have to be and fun-loving when nothing is going on, You are a great weatherman. I really enjoyed reading the other posts this morning. Nice to see people on the same page as me. Thank you again and you, Tara, and Chris, please continue to keep up the good work. Have a very Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year!!!
From Jerrie in Decatur (12/13/10):
good morning greg hope you had a nice time while you were off. during the chirstmas parade you stopped and went over to my grandchildren and talked they thought that was fine they even got on tv thankyou for being a very good person tell scot that i miss him on the morning with you and tara but chris is starting to fit in keep up the good work i cant get out unless i go in my wheel chair so the wandtv family brings me lots of joy i wake up in a lot of pain but when my coffee is done your are on and i forget how bad i hurt tara will pick a good name for her baby God Bless you all and have a MERRY CHRISTMAS jerrie
Hi, Jerrie! You should have said something to me during the parade. It would have been great to meet a Gregorian! I'm glad your grandkids had a good time, and even got on TV.
I miss working with Scot every day, too. He brought something special to the morning crew I think. But like they say…nothing lasts forever. I just consider myself lucky that I got to work closely with him for as long as I did. Chris is becoming a friend, too, though. So it's not like we were cast into the desert when Scot was removed. And I am glad to hear that you get that much enjoyment out of us in the morning. It helps to know things like that.
From Teri in Decatur (12/16/10):
What does the weather look like for the Christmas Weekend for our area? I want to wish you and all the news team a very Merry Christmas and thank you all for what you do for the communities in your listening area. Like many of the nonprofits Easter Seals does not have much of an advertising budget and we rely on the media to help. Thanks so much WAND and Merry Christmas to everyone there.
Being completely honest Christmas weekend is a little too far out to give a prognostication with any level of accuracy. I could tell you something that the models are showing right now. But I wouldn't have a ton of confidence in it. I will say that chances are good this year's Christmas will be a white one. I don't think we will get over freezing before then.
And you are welcome for the coverage. While on one hand it is our FCC dictated duty to provide these services to our communities…we also enjoy helping out with groups like the Easter Seals. Giving air time is the least we can do!
Speaking of charitable stuff…we are having our toy drive today. If you are so inclined stop by and donate some toys. You won't be able to watch us for more than 10 minutes without getting some information on it today. So if you've got a little extra cash you'd like to put to good use…just watch us for a bit to get the details on how you can help!
Have a great weekend! I am off next Monday…I might blog, or I might not. It depends on what the day brings!
--The drive to work wasn't horrible this morning. It started with ice on my car and driveway. So I started the car a little early and started scraping. It only took about five minutes to clear windows enough to be able to drive. I threw some salt down on the steps and part of the driveway. Then I left the house. The roads were a little slick…but not treacherous…in Mattoon. Route 121 was decent, too, and I actually kept my speed around 50 mph the entire trip just to be safe. All in all it took me a little over an hour to drive what usually takes a little less than an hour.
Keep in mind that there wasn't much traffic at all on my way to work. Having other drivers on the road does make a difference, as you know. So if you are planning to drive this morning I would suggest still giving yourself an extra 30 minutes or so if you can. It is always better to be safe than sorry in these instances. While my particular drive was decent your particular drive could be more difficult!
--For whatever reason there has been another spike in blog readership. Occasionally I like to go over a few guidelines for the blog. And now with more readers coming around it seems like a good time to remind you that you are always free to send feedback to this blog. There is a form at the bottom of the blog where you can send feedback. You have to create a profile on this website, and your feedback will have a word limit. If you're just not into that…simply send me an email with "blog" on the subject line and I will get it posted. Feedback is done most every Friday on this blog…we call it "Feedback Friday".
You are free to say whatever you like in your feedback. We cover many different and sometimes odd topics around here. However…I won't post any feedback that is mean to my co-workers, for the most part. I also won't allow any feedback that defames anyone local, other than me. You can say whatever you like about me…cause I can take it and this is my blog. But I don't think it is fair to my co-workers or local people to let anyone bash them on this blog. Now…anyone nationally famous is fair game. But really…why not try to say something positive anyway?
I also can't post off-color language on this blog. "The Suits" are tremendously generous with me in regards to this blog. (Believe that, Playa.) But this is a corporation's website. So we have to keep it fairly clean around here. These aren't my rules, mind you. But it's my blog…and I get called out on the carpet when something "bad" gets posted on the blog because I'm the one that puts it on the blog.
We also send out email alerts anytime the blog is updated. You can sign up for email alerts also at the bottom of the page. That way if I update the blog at an odd time you will get an email to let you know. Let's face it…this is a life-altering blog and you clearly won't want to miss an update! So sign up for alerts if you are so inclined.
Tomorrow is "Feedback Friday"! Get your thoughts in now!
I've been doing YouTube a bit lately. Yesterday I was focusing on Queen, or more to the point…Freddie Mercury. In the next couple of years there should be a movie out about Mercury. He is largely regarded in musical circles to have one of the very best voices in the history of rock. I tend to agree with that! So today I am just going to post a few links from some of what I think are the better performances from a tribute concert several years ago (1992) for Freddie Mercury. The concert was at Wembley Stadium, and the place was packed…not an easy task. Keep in mind that some of the comments on these links contain profanity…because there isn't a maturity test for getting online…
I hope you enjoy it. Maybe you have to be a huge music fan to get through them, or maybe a huge Queen fan. But I was digging them the other day and I thought I would share them. Will there be another voice like Freddie's in our time? Not likely, if you ask me.
I've been wanting to give a shout out for a few weeks now. JC Fultz has been updating his blog a lot lately. And he's been putting some good weather stuff on it. I'm always talking on this blog about how I never wanted this blog to be a straight weather blog. Sometimes people ask me what I think about JC's weather intensive blog. Well…I think it is great. JC knows a lot about weather…and he has put some great weather stuff on his blog. It's a good blog. It's just not the kind of blog I want to do. Anyhoo…when you get the chance check out JC's blog. Last night he updated it talking about the difficulties of forecasting the weather. He's got all kinds of climatology on his blog, too. And once in a while he talks about his disease that way too many people share with him. I call it "Cubbie-itis". We're still hoping for a cure.
Someone sent me a link to some scary stuff recently. I've now checked out the link and it seems legit. Are your credit cards as safe as you think?
When Aaron Rodgers was knocked out of the Packers-Lions game yesterday I was effectively knocked out of the playoffs in my fantasy football money league. It saddens me to bring you this breaking news. My late season run was remarkable, and literally gave hope to a generation of young people. After spending most of the season on the bottom of the standings…and then coming back to put myself in contention for post-season…stories will long be told of my struggles, triumphs, and eventual defeat. Please take a moment to recognize and reflect on what could have been.
Now to more serious matters…last week there was a piece of feedback that I said I would hold until today. Here it is:
From Kelly (12/9/10):
So last week on the blog I mentioned that I caught some flak for how I do the weather most mornings. The point of me telling you that was to give you an idea of what it is like to do this job. It is 95% fantastic…really. But there is 5% of the job that can be a headache, and part of that is hearing from just about anyone about the work you do. I'm not starting a pity party. This job is a good one. But no job is perfect…and this blog is a good place to open up the curtains a bit.
The response I got to that blog last week has been splendid. While I did not expect a love-fest…that's kind of what happened. Because I did not intend to illicit kind feedback from you I will not post all of it this morning. But out of respect for your thoughts I figured I would post a few from last week's blog. And then of course there will be the feedback from this week, too!
From Sue in Decatur (12/1/10):
Good Morning Greg. For what it is worth, my husband and I laugh out loud in the morning while we watch you and the whole news team. You are a bright spot in the, usually dark, news. Do not stop being who you are. Those unfluid souls would still find something to complain about.
True dat, Sue. And I am glad you crazy kids get a laugh once in a while!
From Jim in Taylorville (12/1/10):
Don't worry about witless people who will always gripe about the job you do.
For many years I lived in southern California. (I now forget why)
Since the weather out there seldom changes much, the news stations rarely dedicated more than a few minutes per hour for someone to report that the temps would stay exactly the same for yet another week. In other words: Nobody gave a damn about the weather, so predicting it was a mighty dull job. KNBC had a great weatherman however, who attracted many new viewers to their massive audience. He was always funny, and super fast at deadly come-back lines to the news anchor, who was a young Tom Brokaw. The weatherman soon became so popular that NBC and Merv Griffin offered him Chuck Woolery's job of hosting "The Wheel of Fortune". Yep... the Chicago native Pat Sajak was a fantastic Los Angeles weatherman! (He's also a Viet Nam army vet)
Point is that lots of bored and up-tight people complained that Sajak didn't take his job seriously... yada, yada, yada... Sure enough he lost his weatherman job... but look where it landed him. Regarding those weather reporters who are unbearably boring... I'll agree that too many of them exist. I theorize that upbeat weather breaks are appreciated because people are endlessly spoon fed "the local news", until we can't stomach any more blood, guts, violence, drug busts, and such. News stories of cruelties to children or animals cause me to instantly shut down my TV. I recognize the problems and try to do my part to help... so please spare me the sensationally graphic film evidence. I'll look at it when I'm next called for jury duty. Right now I just need to know how many sets of long underwear I'll need tomorrow.
I love that you called me "Trumbold", Jim! That was what most people called me in high school.
Great story about Pat Sajak. I had no idea that he did weather long ago! By the way…one of the dream jobs that would pull me away from this area would be to work in San Diego. What a fantastic part of the country! And for those keeping track the other two dream jobs would be in Chicago or Myrtle Beach.
From Nannette in Decatur (12/1/10):
Greg you and Phil are all right in my book. Live and let live so long as no one is causing harm to others MYOB. People are looking over the fence and don't see what's in their own back yard. And as far as you and the Morning show, YOU'RE ALL FANTASTIC. You put a SMILE on my face daily I even DVR in case I sleep in. Keep up the GOOD work and Tara Congratulation, and Welcome Chris.
That's a great point, Nannette. Certain people seem way too concerned with what others are doing. I guess it has always been that way.
And thanks for the compliment! Since Tara and Chris are both HOPELESSLY addicted to this blog they will both see the nice words that you typed!
From My Little Sister in Myrtle Beach (12/1/10):
Hi Greg :0) If I lived in your viewing area, I think I would only be offended when you said the word 'snow' on air. The person that thinks you are unprofessional is still watching you everyday on the news. She is just a grouchy old hag. Enjoy your time off from work and try to get off the X-box every few hours. Love ya!
Awwww…Little Lisa! I actually did not spend all of my time off playing vids…but there were a few hours necessarily wasted. I'm just training for when wars are entirely fought with controllers. I'll be aces, Jerry…ACES!
From Colby in Assumption (12/2/10):
Greg, I think you do a wonderful job with the weather. You always make my wife and I laugh in the morning. It is a great way to start off the day. I have watched you when serious weather situations are happening. You are very professional and all business when this happens. But when there is nothing going on and the doppler is empty, you should be yourself and make weather fun. I have noticed JC does the same thing also. You have to make weather somewhat fun. Also, you and Tara have a good and fun chemistry in the morning, Chris is starting to loosen up a bit and come around. All I can say is keep up the good work!!!!
Anyone else noticing a trend of couples watching and laughing in the morning? That is an awesome trend as far as I am concerned.
I'm glad you mentioned the chemistry between me and Tara. Frankly I think it is about time someone finally mentioned that she is obviously quite fond of me. You could almost even use the word "smitten". While you are at it…you could even say that she is "smitten as a kitten" with me.
And I agree with you that Chris is starting to find his mark on the morning show. When the big change first happened I mentioned here on the blog that it would take a bit. But honestly…I think he is hitting his stride sooner than I thought he would. He is a very energetic and fun person off-air, and I think some of that is finally starting to show through in the morning on-air. Of course just as he is hitting it well in the morning he goes on a 20 day vacation to Southern California!
From Pamela in Mount Zion (12/6/10):
Hi Greg, Before you came along I watched WCIA for weather in the morning. Then I saw you and lmao. Haven't watched anybody else since that day! Keep up the good work and keep us smiling!
Thanks for the support, Pamela! I was trying to remember who was doing morning weather over there when I started in the morning here. I think it was Robert Reese (?). Odd that it is Robert over there once again! While technically it is competition…he's a friend of mine, and a good dude. But thanks for watching us!
I did say that I would only post a few of the "love-fest" feedbacks, right?? Oops. Okay…I will spare you from posting more of them.
From Andrew in Shelbyville (12/8/10):
Hey there. I really enjoy reading your blog. I will have to ask your mom (I work with your mom at WAL*MART in Mattoon) about the Ford LTD and the Beatles. In fact, my favourite Beatle was Ringo Starr. I also enjoy the Beatles too. I enjoy the music of the 50s-70s. If I would not have changed majors early on at Lake Land I probably would have graduated with you and Stephanie Holscher from the Radio-Tv program. I do see Ken Beno shopping walmart every now and then. George Noory before he took over CTC was heard on 550-AM KTRS out of St. Louis, Mo. He did an overnight show on there.
Thanks, Andrew! Were you in class with me and Steph for little while before you switched majors? If you were…apologies for not remembering. After all…it was many moons ago!
Mom has mentioned you before, and says you are a good dude. Thanks for the background on George Noory. I had no idea he was in St. Louis before hitting C-T-C! And Beno is the best. He is a certified Lake Land College legend, and enjoying his retirement these days.
From David in Altamont (12/8/10):
I was a Junior in High School when John Lennon was killed.
We had been discussing the Beatles in a Modern America History class just a couple of days before.
I was never a big Beatles fan, but I really liked what Lennon was doing in the post-Beatle years.
Ringo was my favorite, just because, well, he ain't right. LOL
It's such a shame, David. "Double Fantasy" had just come out when John Lennon was shot. It was a fantastic album, in my opinion, and just the beginning of what he wanted to do as a second or third act of his music career. Indeed…killing John Lennon may have actually been killing music in a way. Who knows how Lennon would have changed music…again…had he not been killed. Sure…Lennon and McCartney changed music the first time around. But it was John that was the "revolutionary" of the two. Too bad we will never know.
I need to thank Scott and Connie for sending me a great virtual Christmas card the other day. I kept waiting for one of the dogs to eat the cat…but it wasn't that kind of card!
From Dave in Decatur (12/9/10):
Tomorrow being feedback Friday. I thought I would put my opinion in concerning the economy problems. This recession started when the oil companies began raising the gas prices. As fuel costs went up, everything else did, as delivery costs went up. The gas prices went down a bit a while back, but now as the stock market is showing more life, oil prices are up also. This gave the oil companies carte blanche to raise fuel prices. I follow the pump patrol site on this web site. It seems that before every weekend, such as today, the prices go up 20 to 30 cents a gallon. all at once. Then on Monday they start down a few pennies at a time until Thursday or Friday, then zoom up again. When is the government in Washington going to take their blinders off that are protecting the oil industry, and really do what it takes to fix the economy. I know that the Americans have a love affair with their cars, but this is ridiculous. The oil companies now are keeping the prices up, because cars are getting better mileage. This defeats the purpose! Come on Pres. Obama, get working on the real problem.
That's a great point, Dave. Gas prices have not been an issue on the national scene since before the November election in '08. It's almost like a deal was struck. "You guys don't get crazy with prices and we'll let you hover around $3 a gallon." Of course I have no proof of that and it is just speculation. Sometimes I think the only way to get the country back is to wipe away the current government and start all over. But how are you going to find thousands of people to put in place that wouldn't eventually sell out?
I received a great piece of feedback from my friend Kelly. I've decided that I am going to hold it until Monday. It is a long bit of feedback and I don't want today's blog to be excessive. And there are some important points in the feedback that might just deserve the solo space on Monday.
Good luck with the weather this weekend. It is starting to look like the heavier snow may miss us to the North! Sorry to those that were hoping for 10 inches of it!
As I blog this morning I am fully aware that it might seem I am getting closer to covering my head with tin foil and preparing my house for whatever is going to happen on 12/21/12. Yeah…I've been listening to "Coast to Coast A.M." a lot on my way to work. And yes…those people tend to talk a lot about conspiracies like chemtrails and computers taking over the world. But I've been reading up on something lately that has caught my attention. There was an article released within the last week or two…and I wish I could find it but I can't right now…that was talking about how we are starting to realize that maybe cell phones are not as harmless as the companies that make them have been telling us.
It's something I've thought about for years because I always have my cell phone near me. And while lately I have been making it a point to be away from it more…I've given myself years of close exposure to whichever device I owned at the time. So if these things really are breaking down our cells, or whatever, then there is a good chance it will impact my body in some way. It is certainly possible that these phone makers have not been telling us everything they know. Anytime money is involved…and we are talking about billions of dollars here…ethics go out the window. When this much money is involved we have already seen monster companies do the wrong thing, even when it means sending people to an early grave. The biggest and quickest to mind would be tobacco companies. Any of them. And all of them.
So what happens in a couple of years if "new studies" find that cell phones contribute to the breakdown of the cells in our bodies? Unless I have been misinformed cancer rates are on the way up. Childhood afflictions like leukemia and asthma and autism and ADHD are all skyrocketing. Do you think you are safe if you don't use a cell phone? Well…do you live near a cell phone tower? We are talking about invisible waves of energy that might be slowly destroying our bodies…and with phones and towers everywhere in civilized society how do you escape this "dirty electricity"?
I heard someone saying recently that places that are not over run with cell towers or even electricity don't have the level of diabetes or cancer or the other illnesses I mentioned above that those of us "on the grid" have. That would seem to indicate some kind of huge difference…and why couldn't it be this "dirty electricity"?
Here is a link to a website I found this morning explaining "dirty electricity". While I don't think I will move to the Outback and live an Amish lifestyle…and I don't think I am going to fortify my house with whatever metal reflects these dangerous waves…I will certainly further research and pay closer attention to this stuff for a while until I am convinced that my life will not be shortened from our "progress" as a society.
I'd love to hear what you think about this stuff. Tomorrow is "Feedback Friday". Hit the feedback section below or send me an email with "blog" on the subject line. And if you want to be daring…send that email from your PDA!
It is starting to look like some of us could get drilled with snow this weekend. We've been talking about it this week in the morning during the news that it wasn't quite clear yet how it was going to play out. But as is the case most of the time as we get closer things become clearer. Now…we are still a few days out. But it looks like some of us could get a few inches of snow mostly Saturday afternoon into Saturday night. Right now there is a better chance the farther north in our area…north of interstate 72. Stay tuned!
Yesterday was of course the 69th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. And of course 30 years ago tonight that twisted bastard shot John Lennon in the back four times in front of The Dakota. It feels odd to refer to anniversaries of these events simply because anniversaries are generally happy remembrances. These two events literally shook the world. Of course one directly impacted many more people than the other. But the death of John Lennon was news that did stop the world for a couple of days.
I grew up on the Beatles. My Mom is a big fan. I remember riding around in our Ford LTD…bit of a large grey shark looking car…and we'd be jamming to the Beatles "Red" album, which was a compilation of their later hits. Of course back then we were jamming to the 8 track of that album. We had the Beatles around us a lot when I was growing up…and they never left me. I have a lot of Beatles stuff at home. Posters, albums (yes…VINYL!), cd's, books, and what not are among my collection. When I was in high school if a girl wasn't into the Beatles I wouldn't be into her! (That is only a small exaggeration.)
My favorite Beatle was John Lennon. For some reason he just spoke to me more than Paul, George, or Ringo. And in his post-Beatle life I loved what John Lennon was trying to do. I was very young at the time…but I still knew at that point that this was a good man trying to make good points. And even 30 years later his dream of what our world could be still seems pretty good to me. Isn't it sad that the people that seemed to share a similar vision…MLK, JFK, RFK, etc…were all gunned down before their visions became reality? It makes me wonder what is happening in the big picture.
It used to be that I would honor John Lennon on this day by wearing all black during the news. I'd wear one of my black suits…black shoes…black socks…a black shirt…and a black tie. Sadly I am without a black shirt at the moment, so I will not be doing my annual tribute. As a matter of fact it has been a couple of years since I have had a black shirt. But just know that while I am doing the weather this morning I will be singing Lennon songs in my head. And occasionally some may come out of my mouth…purely on accident…
So I still listen to "Coast to Coast A.M." on my way to work in the morning. Full disclosure…I actually listen to ESPN Radio for a bit, and after I get caught up on the sports I missed the night before I will check in with C-T-C to see what the whack-a-do's are chatting about. This morning they were talking about December 21, 2012. If you are familiar with the Mayan calendar you might know that some people consider that day to be one of the more important dates in human history (or future). There are people that legit believe that something huge is going to happen to humankind on that date.
The guy this morning seemed very positive about the whole thing. Apparently humans are supposed to reach the next level of consciousness on that date. I really won't do the guy justice by trying to relay to you his message here. But the dude had some nice things to say about how he sees our race's future. It was refreshing to hear someone talk about a possible upcoming event without giving it the old doom and gloom. We could all use bigger doses of positive in our lives, couldn't we??
The host's name is George Noory, and he is a likeable guy as far as I am concerned. I've said before here on the blog that George is a very giving radio host. He has some people on his show that are pretty far out there…and I've never once heard him judge anyone. He lets them have their say…gives them the respect any human deserves…and then moves on to the next topic.
If you are a person that is interested in this kind of stuff…I've found the show's website. So I will post the link here so you can check it out yourself. Obviously there are still many things about our universe that we have yet to fully understand. And it is in our basic human nature to search for answers. So if you are curious about this stuff…hit the website. And of course feel free to let me know what you think by using the feedback form below, or by sending me an email with "blog" on the subject line!
It's always nice to come back to work after a few days off! The weekend was fantastic. Thursday and Friday were restful and fun. All is right with the world. I'm even set up to win both of my fantasy football leagues this weekend…and I am edging closer to making the playoffs in my money league. I am not quite there yet…but if I keep winning my chances are great. The Dallas Cowboys had a huge win yesterday against the Colts. Yep. All is right with the world.
Before I started my little vacation last week I posted something that had been on my mind for a week or so. My intention in posting it on the blog was not to get you to send me feedback of support. But I wanted to let you know that I do appreciate the feedback I've received. There is a good chance I won't post most of the feedback because that wasn't what my little rant was about last week. This is a great job, and I am fortunate to have it. But it is not without its own special headaches, as no job is. And the blog is a great place for all of us to go to blow off a little steam!
Last week someone sent me a link to a video that is a little bit over the top and graphic. But I think the point it tries to make is important. I've decided to go ahead and give you the link…but know that it isn't for the weak-stomached. It illustrates how, quickly lives can change. Here is it.
See you later, November. You were a good month, and a warm month. Hello December, our old friend. Please…be gentle.
Now here is something odd about people. Take 100 people and have them read what I wrote above. Some will find it benign and move on with their lives. Some will find it humorous and give a chuckle. And there is a small segment that will find some reason to be offended at what I typed. It is this last group of people with which I have been dealing lately.
I don't do my job like most people do the job. For whatever reason…I've never seen things like most people see things. Maybe it is because I literally don't see things like most people because of Duane's Syndrome (Google it!). Anyhoo…when I started doing this job it was always more about the personality than the science to me. It was more the sizzle than the steak. Sure…you have to have a little steak to have credibility…and I have that knowledge. But you can know more about weather than God…and if you can't effectively communicate what you know it doesn't matter because no one will pay attention. We've had people working here like that in the past and they were so boring that drying paint on the wall would fall asleep watching them. So I try to at least be a little entertaining while I am working.
I think most people appreciate that in the morning. It, starts the day with something to smile about, and to me that is more important than, telling you that today is going to be 4 degrees warmer than yesterday because of the warm air advection. And as I said before you do have to have a little steak. And if you pay attention when the weather is getting bad I don't horse around much at all. But when the weather is not necessarily threatening I see no reason why someone shouldn't be entertained while trying to find out what to wear today.
Enter un-fluid sense of humor dude, or dudette as the case may be. Lately I have heard whispers from both within and without this building that some people aren't thrilled with how I function in the morning. Yesterday morning was a good example of that. We are doing a Dairy Queen giveaway…and someone decided to give me the contest phone so I could answer it when people call to win a gift card. Naturally I am not just going to say hello and do the contest. The phone was given to me because I will at least make it interesting. Yesterday it did not go exactly how I planned and the first couple of callers didn't work out. But the third was the winner, and she was fun on the phone. But there is always someone that doesn't like anything…and I heard from one of those people yesterday.
I'm not bothered by emails/letters/criticism like this. But it does make me think about just being that cardboard cut-out weather person that never lifts a mood. While at this point in my , life I am not interested in doing a job where I can't be me…it is stuff like this that makes me rethink things. Should I go back to being a boring, lifeless replica of what someone thinks passes for a weather person? Or should I continue to try to inject life into what I do? I'm not sure if this is a professional crossroads or not. But it is something that has been on my mind for several days. And this blog is the place where we can tell one another what is on our minds.
In the end my rebellious nature will probably reject the unfluid among us. In the end I will probably keep doing what I am doing until someone in charge decides it is time for me to no longer have the opportunity. But in the meantime it gives me pause to consider those that just "don't get me, or my unproffesionalism".
I'm out the rest of the week after today. There isn't much feedback this week but we will do it this morning!
From David in Altamont (11/29/10):
I'll be off Thursday and Friday, too. It's Deer Season, of course!!
It may be the 2nd Regular Season, but it's Opening Day for Muzzleloading Season. :-))
I've never hunted, David. But I am certainly not against it. As long as it is respectfully done, and nothing is wasted it does a great service to wildlife. It's always better for a deer to die immediately from a bullet or bow than by starvation due to overpopulation!
There is a friend of mine headed out this weekend, too. , He already has a couple on the season…so his first two this weekend go to me. So good luck to you and my other friend, David! Be careful out there!
From Phil in Cissna Park (11/30/10):
Hi there Greg. I have supported the same position on gay marriage that you do, for years. I say "live and let live" and so WHAT if I choose to be straight, gay or whatever. When I was 8 years old, I was in a doctor's office waiting for my appointment. I picked up a Reader's Digest...let's see...I guess that would be 1956-57. In it was a quote that I thought was SO COOL that I have retained it all these years. I adapted this as my philosophy and have passed it on to all of my kids: "If white is good and black is bad, then all my friends are gray or plaid". I simply apply that philosophy to every aspect of life I encounter...race, sex, religion...whatever. Who am I to begin to judge others?
That's a great philosophy, Phil! And I wish more people would live up to the credo of not judging other people.
The Illinois House yesterday passed the measure allowing rights for civil unions. I'm still not sure why straights want to keep such a hold on the term "marriage"…like we are doing so well with it ourselves. But at least the civil union stuff is a step in the right direction. Now the measure goes to the state Senate.
That's it for me this week. Again…I may blog again before next Monday, especially if there is a lot of feedback. But in case I do not…have a great weekend! And if you intend to shoot at stuff this weekend…be careful! And be respectful of the life you are about to take! (As I type this I have no doubt that someone will read into this that I am saying it is okay to shoot people. Oh well. The only way to offend no one is to not do anything.)