Monday, March 4, 2019

"Oh, Say Can You Say!

"Oh, Say Can You Say! 
What's The Weather Today?"


5:30 AM 3/4 This week, we stand with the thousands of volunteers, teachers, and millions of students nationwide in celebrating Read Across America in honor of the March 2 birthday of a humble author. 

Given that on Saturday 3/2 our region was slightly distracted by how The Cat In The Hat Comes Back (in the form of snow), we chose to bring forward from our archives some of our favorite Seuss-themed stories to share with you in the post -storm period. 

It could be said that Mr. Theodor Geisel had one of the greatest impacts on student literacy in the past century. He quietly accomplished this by writing books which engage children and parents alike with entertaining yet thought-provoking "word-smithing." His effervescent style requires the reader to invest time in reading and carefully enunciating words from start to finish story so listeners can participate and understand. Dr. Seuss also taught us the passion of persistence. His first book, And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street was  rejected 27 times by other publishers before the Vanguard Press took a chance in 1937. Since then, the whimsically-themed books have become a mainstay of helping children learn how to enjoy reading, all over the globe.

Would you, could a forecast? 
So in honor of this occasion, we invite you, like the Cat in the Hat, to "tell us a thing or two about that." Whether you are a teacher, a student, in the scientific community, or from any walk of life, participating in it starts with writing about your weather today. Thus, we offer this Dr. Seuss-themed introduction:

What is "that" you might say? 
Why it's a real chance for you!
Tell us your local weather, each day, it's true!
We seek writers of all ages, far and near...
to share their passions for writing, right here!
It's really quite easy, even when weather is breezy,
to become a key part of our team.
We monitor, collaborate and forecast, all over.
What could you do? It's quite simple you see,
Take a photo, write a story and say "here's me!"  
Because, as we say, we're local, nearby, yes indeed.
(and trustworthily authentic, 100 percent guaranteed!)
So by tomorrow, if you're interested, in taking a chance...
We invite you to spin up your own "weather dance."
Contact us right here, right now!* Don't delay. 
And before long, you'll be forecasting in great get on your way!
Send a simple email to with your Seuss-theme weather report for your local area, your school or even for a whole region. We'll feature it in a special collection of forecasts here in the lead story and promoted in our Facebook pages! 

Wait until you get to Part Two... 
As part of our belated celebration of Read Across America, we surmise that some effervescent elementary teachers no doubt had an epiphany about the imagery featured in "The Cat In The Hat Comes Back." 

  • There is some climate history between the lines, and if you dig a little deeper into the records, there are some verrrryyy interesting correlations between why THIS story featured bucket loads of heavy snow. 
  • If you have the book at home, go get it, and take a look at the FIRST PUBLISHED date. That will give you a hint.

We know it as the time-tested tale of two elementary school-aged children, a brother and sister, at home following a heavy snowfall. They have stern instructions from Mother to clear the sidewalks, "this was no time for play or fun, there was work to be done." 

Sure enough, "the Cat" returns to unleash another unwelcome barrage of disruption to the family's personal effects. In a valiant effort to clean up the interior evidence, the Cat and his little cat minions from A to Y inadvertently discolor the surrounding snowfall to a deep cotton candy pink. At this point, Mom is probably just getting off the traffic-clogged beltway to arrive home shortly. Her children are understandably in a dither. I would be. It's like not having the dishes done before the Mrs. comes upstairs from the laundry room. 

The saving grace is an impossibly invisible "little Cat Z" who possesses a magic formula-potion-chemical-something called "VOOM!" This peculiarly effective substance instantly cleans all the pinkified snow.. as well as renders clear the sidewalks and driveway, right before Mom returns. "And so," says the Cat, "if you ever have spots, now and then, I will be very happy to come here again."

Photo credit: 
York Town Square Blog, March 1958 

What are we saying?? Perhaps an early March warmup, however brief, will be just the VOOM! you need to clean up all the snow and ice. Just in time for the Cat to Come Back, like he did after the infamous late season storm of March 1958to foment some youthful indiscretions upon unsupervised children. (Society was looser, or tighter, back then). 

*Note:Those who are faint of heart may not want to click that link, it is a past snowfall map from NOAA of the 1958 storm.)

Did you check the publication date of the book? Do you see the connection as to why Seuss spun a snow-splattered tale of two kids shoveling an unfathomable amount of the white stuff? In 1958? Because something happened that that month.

Part Three... 
though pleasant it may not be
Could winter linger a lot longer than any of us even want to know?? Consider these projections from the NOAA Climate Prediction Center for the period March 8 to 13 (and even beyond that).

Where oh where have we seen this pattern before? What pray tell is going to happen this time? The US and European model ensembles also show rising concern for a return to stormy coastal pattern in the same time period. It would appear we are NOT yet, (even if you ARE DONE!)

"And this," says the Cat, "Is all I have to say about that." 

The Foot's Forecast Long Range Team


ravensbbr said...

Notsofreestate, this is your topic, drop some verse and Dr. Suess it on up for us!!! :)

notsofreestate said...

Debating about posting it here.

It's not really a forecast, but it is Sussian. :-D

notsofreestate said...

Sorry, that was not very clear.

By "here", I meant in the comments section. It is more of a weather story rather than a forecast of my local weather.

Tina said...

Hit it notsofree!!! The stage is yours!!

notsofreestate said...

Ok, here it is. Hope all of it posts!

It was late.
It was dark when I left from my work
Where I'd been since the morning.
No, I didn’t shirk:
I reported on time despite all of the snow
Which had fallen from gray skies to cold earth below.
I looked up to see: Were more clouds in the sky?
But the stars were a-twinkling; they looked so nearby
That I knew it was cold, but knew not the degree, so I dashed to my car.
I was curious to see.
I drove home through the starlight to check on the weather
Not taking that call from my dear sister Heather.
I pulled into the driveway, ran in through the door,
To see if the forecast was same as before.
But alas, what had looked like another snow later
Was replaced by a rain storm! Now, I’m not a hater
Of rain, or of fog or of snow (maybe ice!)
But I was just thinking that more snow would be nice.
I could read all the comments from our dear friend Andy
Whose bethong-ed girlfriend has kept us with candy
That Turkish delight of the fresh falling kind
The precip of sorts that all PowderHounds find
We cannot live without. We just want more and more.
So we pour, and we pour and we pour and we pour
Over every Foot’s Forecast
We can’t live without it.
If there’s snow in the forecast, we don’t want to doubt it.
We discuss all the details (with the devils in mind)
To be sure all the options are clearly outlined.
Then we wait and we wait and we wait and we wait
(And we mutter impatiently when storms start late)
And when that white stuff finally reaches the ground
There’s no happier soul than a true Powderhound!
When the yellows and greens do depart from the radar
We sit, pencils poised, to assess all the data(r).
Were we right? Were we close? Did it happen as thought?
(Now where is that brand new snow shovel I bought?)
We work and we play and have fun in the fluff
And on rare occasions, even we say “enough!”
But I’m not ready (yet!) to give up the pleasure
Of watching the gloriously cold winter weather
Transform the world with its white winter blanket.
I’ll be ready for more snow next week:
You can bank it!
And when this cold snowy winter ends,
I’ll bid fond farewell to my Foot’s Forecast friends
For a very short time, but it won’t be a bummer:
Because, (Iike all teachers),
I also love summer!

ravensbbr said...

Mr. Foot, please induct notsofreestate into our Hall of Honor (do we have one?) immediately for the excellent powderhound prose.


Kathi said...

Notsofreestate, that was amazing!!!

Cathy in BelAir said...

Notsofreestate, WOW!!! That was fantastic !!! Definitely worth an A+++

Anonymous said...

I thought of your post in the comments section a few days ago when I read this Foots update. Thanks for the laugh as I really needed that this afternoon. : )

Mr. Foot said...


that was so
so excellent.

(*Ms. Julee can attest to the rarity of this occurning in our reality.)

Be forewarned your post is going to have to go to Facebook this evening. With credit as "one of our Maryland readers."

Mr. Foot said...

And thank you ever so much for your vibrant "fusion" weather story! We invite anyone else to submit there and these will be compiled on the main site in their own special section. It's truly fusion forecasting at it's finest.

BioPat said...

Outstanding, thanks for sharing your prose!

NeedaSnowday said...

:::: standing :::: BRAVO!!!!

Tina said...

::standing up from seat::

Wild applause!!!

Unknown said...

Man rises from corner where he was recovering from Mr Anonymous and Mr Emerson.

Man raises two fists in the air and yells " Notsofreestate, that was Awesome"!

Julee said...


*and he's right -- he is RARE-ly speechless.

Butch Dynomite said...


Andy, Southern York County Pa said...


I am not a poet, but I will throw one out there that conveys the weather possibilities in the medium range.

The bottle was nearly empty when I took a look,
I almost dropped the bourbon glass as my hands shook,
No it was not delirium tremens as I don't always drink,
I really did not know what to think,
As I look at the model before me,
I cannot believe what I see,
So I take a break for a well needed pee,
Once I returneth for a careful analysis,
I'm stunned and in paralysis,
For March is the month so Spring,
But with a forecast like this there will be no birds to sing,
The model I stare at is no hottie,
But it does show a storm larger than Luciano Pavarotti,
So I run to Foot's forecast to deliver the news,
Where many Springalings greet me with boos,
For a snowstorm the signal is strong,
Dare I say it resembles a 600lb bearded lady in the thong,
This far out it is too early to be specific,
But if the models trends continue next week the weather will be horrific,
From Baltimore, York, to Dover, Winter is far from OVER.

Unknown said...

Nice Andy

notsofreestate said...

I just got home from work.


All of you are awesome. I'm so glad you enjoyed it! :-D

Cathy in BelAir said...

LOL...good job Andy! and I would love to hear more about the possibility of getting your 600 lb bearded lady together with Luciano Pavarotti. Sounds like a match made in heaven!

notsofreestate said...

:applause, applause:


Sweet! And a great poem too! This is March (weather) madness to be sure. :-D

I can't wait to see what develops!

BioPat said...

Andy you co0ntinue to amaze me with all your talents!

I have heard there is something lurking out there, perhaps 8-10 days away, yet it bears watchingg at this point to see what develops. So onward with the weather prose my friends!

Unknown said...

I'm not at all a forecaster but I can represent the teachers
who depend on Foot's Forecast and it's amazing team!Here goes:

When it comes to the weather
No place can compare
To our own state of Maryland
but better beware…
The weather we have
is a most special sort
It changes each minute
It’s tough to report !

We wake up to sunshine
A warm day to begin
But by night the snowfall’s
Clear up to our chin !
We never are sure
from one day to another
To dress in warm boots,
Or take an umbrella

But we have a trick
like the Cat in the Hat
To help us to know
about weather like that !
This gang will assure that our day won’t ‘kaput”
So thank you to all the

From everyone at Beyond the Bell
at Immaculate Heart of Mary School
Ms. Pat Plowman

notsofreestate said...

Yay, Pat Plowman!!!!!

How very fun to read!

Tina said...

The world can have The Three Tenors... we have The Three Weather Geeks!!

Tina said...

Ohmigod, that sounds so lame on the re-read. But I'm not deleting it! I stand by my lameness!!

Like I stand in the mud that our yard is becoming with the thaw. Friday should make it a quagmire. Yay. Not.

ravensbbr said...

Check out the t-storms in FLA...intense.

ravensbbr said...

Check out the t-storms in FLA...intense.

Mr. Foot said...

Andy and Pat Plowman (et al).

My recent period of silence is due to my abject stunnedness over your dedication to the craft of creative weather fusion prose.

The team is impressed, feels honored and equally amazed at your awesome work. Well done, well done.
Thank you for taking the challenge with much vim and vigor!

BioPat said...

Nice job Pat!

Amy said...

Wintry mix for the morning commute? Thoughts? Focus was AACO but moving North.

Andy, Southern York County Pa said...

While quantitative precipitation forecast fields from 12z models generally support keeping the forecast
dry for tonight and Friday morning...persistent low level Ely/onshore flow will
cause Atlantic moisture to overrun the cad dome. A further look into
model soundings indicates a setup for freezing drizzle or light
freezing rain with surface temperatures below freezing. Precipitation may start out as
a brief period of sleet. The best isentropic lift..albeit very
shallow...and thus chances for light precipitation appear to develop over
central Virginia/southern Maryland overnight and the District of Columbia metropolitan during the early morning.
Overall confidence for precipitation is not high enough to issue an
advisory at this time. Confidence for freezing drizzle decreases
farther north and west as drier air has more of an influence.
History shows even a light glaze of ice has the potential to adversely
impact rush hour...especially in the urban corridor. The focus is
the Friday morning commute. Light precipitation may continue into the afternoon but
ptype will transition to rain from southeast to northwest as temperatures warm above
freezing late Friday morning and afternoon.

Andy, Southern York County Pa said...


Will have to watch for some light freezing drizzle. The air is very dry and any precip that makes it up here will be chewed up by the dry air. The further north one goes the less of a threat, but even a tiny bit goes a long way in terms of problems. It is a NOW CAST situation because it is hard to tell how much if any moisture can survive the dry air mass as it ticks in our direction.

Andy, Southern York County Pa said...

This storm was the "potential snow" the Canadian model was showing a couple days ago. Almost all is likely to go out to sea, and it is a shame because radar looks pretty juicy and if the low had the right track it could be a nice snowstorm. I never turn my back on any coastal no matter what models show, but right now the best it will do is create a freezing light glaze in spots on the south side of the Baltimore metro region more so than the north. I don't trust coastal storms this close so it is interesting to keep a tab on it anyway!

Andy, Southern York County Pa said...

Good video laying out the latest models and possibilities for Pavarotti.

NeedaSnowday said...

Winter weather advisory for Charles and St. Mary's ....

Tina said...

I've been watching the winter advisories creep north during the afternoon. No one needs to start their Friday with even a little glaze of ice.

Lizzy B said...

Andy, I agree - Bernie Rayno's videos are great. Looking forward to tracking next week's possibility - would love one more storm to round out this awesome winter!

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