Thursday, October 30, 2008

If All Else Fails, Talk About the Weather

Some people are not going to be happy about anything and want everyone to know their opinions about everything from the price of stamps to the ubiquity of cell phones. About the only way to avoid a confrontational diatribe concerning their opinions is to get in the first word and keep going back to it in a positive manner—vociferously if necessary. The first word in Texas just has to be the weather.

If global warming has had any effect upon the weather in Texas, no one would notice. In fact, one July 1st, back in 1956, my grandmother and a friend were down on a creek bed for some reason when Grandmother snorted her opinion that it would be a cold day in hell when something happened. Not thirty minutes later a little snow shower fell on her and Faye Lyons. Now to this day I could not tell you what started that conversation, but it was Grandmother’s 50th birthday and her friend was trying to cheer her up. She apparently got her wish in a backhanded way; not everyone got snow on her 50th birthday—especially in July in Texas!

For quite awhile now my friends have been attempting to get me to check out every e-mail ‘factoid’ with in order not to look like a fool when I passed on some opinion that I thought was based on fact. Not every opinion, ‘fact,’ or strange story will show up in Snopes right away, but eventually the controversial e-mails make it to that site to be checked for veracity. Learning to check for facts has also been interesting when ‘photo-shopped’ pictures make the same rounds of gullible folks like me. I just tend to believe what I want to believe. Proof of the facts certainly can deflate an opinion or a cherished belief in a hurry.

Now not everyone got to see that snow flurry back in ’56, but I would bet my upper plate on its occurrence if for no other reason than because of how much fun those two old ‘hens’ got out of that birthday gift. Snopes won’t be able to go back to Clay County weather records for that particular creek bed near the Zachry ranch, and you can bet no one from any other state who hadn’t ever seen a strange blue front roll in across the Red River Valley would believe the story. But at least that weather story probably wouldn’t cause a fuss in politics, religion, education, or which operating system is best for a computer. No sir, the weather just might be the best topic for right now.

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