Hot debate over cold Farmers Almanac forecast

Aaron J. Brown

Last week’s “Harvest Moon,” seen from Itasca Hwy 336 perched over the new smokestack at Essar Steel.

OK, so like I said it’s really hot in northern Minnesota today, something that might amuse people from many of the states where the governors wear tank tops to their inaugurations (or will … in the future).

We had intermittent air conditioning at the college today, cool in my office but sauna-like in the classrooms where I teach. Even in the climate controlled parts of campus there were pockets of stale air, trapping all the heat and smells of a 1,000-FYE campus to water the eyes of the innocent passer-by.

A lot of my colleagues dressed up really nice today. I kind of envy the ladies and their ventilating dress modules. I’m wearing linen, mostly to wick away sweat.

A number of people in my social media feed grabbed a hold of a story about The Farmers Almanac predicting frigid cold for our region this winter. Fox News, in particular, seemed to make a lot out of it, perhaps to fuel the continuing notion that global warming isn’t real. They do the same thing any time Al Gore speaks when it is snowing.

I was willing to accept the political subterfuge as an emotional release from today’s heat, but this Washington Post article pretty much step-by-step guts the Farmers Almanac as barely better than a guess. You want answers? It’s cold in space and hot on the sun, the rest is, well, complicated.

So we’re back where we started. Hot. Fall’s coming, winter too; but when? Last year, the northern Minnesota winter came late, stayed too long, and dropped a normal amount of snow in an abnormally short time, a period normally referred to as “Spring.” Kind of like the party guest who storms in drunk, pees on your house plant and sleeps on your couch until the football game comes on.

“Hey, can I stay and watch the game?”

“I don’t know, man. My mom’s coming over.”

“Aw, man. I don’t got no TV.”

“I don’t know. Maybe you should just go home.”

Like I said, it’s hot.

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