Tuesday, January 19, 2010

This isn't Kansas Anymore Toto

I couldn't let the landmark event from the Wizard of Oz go without a mention.

Today's weather forecast: Rain? Yes. Thunderstorms? Likely. Hail? Probable. Tornado??????????????? YES???!!!

Apparently a tornado touched down in various locations throughout Orange County today. You can read more about our weird weather here.

Following the tornado, a National Weather Advisory Warning blew through Orange County Schools like a..., well, like a tornado. The warning was prompted by an uncharacteristic storm moving through the area..., and perhaps this incredibly trendy street embellishment had a little something to do with it, no?
(Photo borrowed from the Orange County Register)

SIDEBAR: Sunset Beach residents certainly have a flare for the dramatic (smile).

I know this because at some point between English and Science class a very unfriendly all-school alert came blaring from the PA system:

Will all students and teachers return to their classrooms. Do not proceed to PE. Do not go to the library. Return to your classrooms immediately and close your doors.

Here's the trivia question for the day: What do you get when you cross an all-school alert to close doors and stay away from windows with a classroom full of mischievous elementary school kids? Well, if you're playing along at home and you guessed a wave of curious faces suctioned cupped to the nearest available glass, then you win the gold star for the day. My students were so eager to get a glimpse at whatever transpired outside my window, that they completely ignored all cautionary warnings and vied for any Hot-Cheetos-scented, fog-covered spot they could find at the pane.

No actual images of the phantom twister surfaced on the web, so I asked students to describe what they remembered from their own first-hand experiences.

One account of note, reported lots of flying debris, and a young lady wearing red sparkly shoes and carrying a little dog.

On a serious note Californians don't see weather like this too often, so find a comprehensive list of tornado safety tips here.

Clearly, the site's credibility can be measured more by what's missing from the safety tips, rather than what's included in them. Noticeably absent from among the suggestions are oldies but goodies:
  1. clicking your heels together three times
  2. and saying, "There's no place like home."


Lisa P said...

Stay away from the windows=get as close to the windows as possible! So true! Good luck this week!

Mike and Katie said...

In MN, we always had tornado drills twice during out the school year. We went into the hallways and covered our head with books. I'm guessing you all don't do those out there.

Dionne Sincire said...

As long as I've been a California resident, we have never had a tornado drill!! EVER! This were extraordinary conditions to say the least. We probably suffered greater risk during the mad dash to the window than we did from any tornado. We have some extreme weather from time to time here in California, but I'd say we're truly blessed.

Alli said...

That is crazy weather! And I love your description of the hot cheeto-scented windows. Seriously. When I think of a elementary students being "stuck" inside due to weather, I always think of a hot and stuffy room filled with the aroma of cheetos, ham sandwiches, and sweaty kids. ;)

Brazenlilly said...

Ha! That is crazy stuff. I still like mocking my Cali friends for their rain-related freak-outs, but this one sounds legitimately wild!

Dionne Sincire said...

i can imagine how tickled you must be! i think kristen's FB status put it like this:

i think californians lose IQ points whenever it rains.

surely our "weather watch" must pale in comparison to oregon weather, but consider kevin drapers theory on relative suffering here. we haven't experienced anything like this in the last 25 years. doesn't that level the playing field a little? we're not that pathetic.., are we? lol

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