Why ancient wisdom was prone to failure. …

We all know some sayings about the weather. Today, with scholars in the weather world able to do our thinking for us, we tend to reason the old stuff went out the window years and years ago.

I started looking at some of it several decades back. And I concluded that their accuracy levels must have been something similar to what meteorological sophistication was capable of. I did not know then that most long range forecasts were based on probabilities worked out from statistics.

And even if I had, I wouldn't have realised that that method was such a complete waste of time, nor why.

I got hold of a book by someone I now know was a senior figure in meteorology back in the day. His name was Richard Inwards and he amassed a collection of weatherlore which the Meteorological Office published.

Not realising how weatherlore worked, he listed the saws into categories that the proverbs were about. So I read chapters on clouds, chapters on rain, chapters on whatever method the author chose to string them together.

Thus fed on such an hodgepodge, it is only right that the sayings were lost to science. But introduce them into different sections with categories that some of the sayings must allude to and you have a reasonable, scientific study of natural history that is based on the weather's effects.

I was looking at the Mag 6 quakes turning up during the last spell and it suddenly occurred to me that the rate of their occurrence was due to the cycle of events in the North Atlantic. Something called the North Atlantic Oscillation.

The North Atlantic Oscillation is a not very fitting name given to the fact that periodically the Low and High pressure systems that wend their way west to east across its surface are sometimes flaccid and sometimes sharply contrasted.

Periods where the Lows never develop any great depth and the Highs seldom reach dizzying heights are called negative oscillations. And periods where the Lows can be very deep ones and the Highs often reach to 1050 millibars and over are called Positive Oscillations.

The oscillations (only considered for the depth of winter in classical circles) concern the air pressure averages for meteorological stations in the NW Atlantic and their similarities or lack of similarities to the air pressure statistics from staions elsewhere.

I can't remember where these stations are. And it seems that it is a matter of taste among the academics who analyse them, which stations are which. Which opens the results to debate and accusations of subjectivity or objectivity or whatever might be said were the world of Climatology an open forum, instead of the clique it so obviously needs to be.

Fortunately, we can write the whole shebang off and start again. We'd have had to anyway in years to come when the next generation to run the various think tanks meteorologic realised they were doing pretty much the unsupportable…

We can write it off now, now that the sea surface levels for most of the North Atlantic are available online. We don't need to analyse statistics. We don't need to know which stations are which to make the collations from.

Instead of that mumbo jumbo, we can look at the whole picture – or as much of it as is represented by the Atlantic Charts and see for ourselves exactly what the set-up was and what the weather was doing on such and such a date.

And we can follow runs of it.

Now all we need is a few old saws and see how well they cut up against reality.


11 thoughts on “Weatherlore

  1. Originally posted by Weatherlawyer:

    A great deal of rain will fall over a fewer regions when the highs are massive and extend over considerable areas and the lows are deep and follow "normal patterns".And a lot less rain will fall a good deal more often over regions less able to deal with the preciptation when the NAO is negative and there are more but "shorter lived" Lows developing and travelling all over the place.

    This is when the desert blossoms as the rose. The wilderness will always exist. Despite the desire of every individual to train his part of the garden in his idea of luxury. The desire of the earth to water selected regions is not in our hands.That we can discover the time table for the watering of the deserts, I know, not just believe, not even firmly believe. I know this must be a natural conclusion to my efforts even if I don't ever get to fit the last pices together.Even if nobody else ever does. Though I also know we must. Eventually. It all waits for god to call the time. He must have his reasons for our lack of vision.Once upon a time the angels were beset by the ones who fell from gods grace. And so they had to prevent the exiles from seeing god. And to do this they had to surrond the beings causing their shadows to form the "pits of dense darkness" over the ones we now call demons.Perhaps the demons took advantage of their situation to annoy and drive the sheltering guardians to distraction. We can't say. We do know that war broke out in the heavens.It wasn't the sort of skirmish you'd recognise on eath as war. It was more a scene of judicial proceedings.Jesus in his reborn form was given command of all the angels the good and the bad. What he must have done then was call all his allies to him.These would have included those who were serving to block access to Jehovah for the fallen. Once they were called away the light that would have fallen on the demons and perhaps hurt them, had to be fended off some other way. And it was up to the demons to serve themselves.They had to leave the vicinity of the heavens, the immaterial universe. They had to come to ours.At least that is what I havegarnered from the book of Revelation AKA Aplocalypse.Quite how the two concepts of angelic behaviour and watering the deserts fit together will have to await a time I can remember what I was going to say.It's one thing to have a bunch of thought zapping the internals of your cranium. It's quite another to xconcentrate on a computer keyboard and struggle to snatch them out of the brain that is struggling with two minds.And I have forgotten the best bits. Tune in for enlightnement -if and when I get it.Edit:I get it. It's not so much that deserts will blossoma s the rose as deserts will always be deserts, wilderness wilderness.

  2. Some years ago I proposed that when the number of relatively severe earthquakes rose, the number of smaller quakes dipped. By and largwe this is true but the sequence didn't always work out so I dropped the idea.Just recently that aberation occurred once more. severe quakes alongside relatively minor ones arise for a reason. And it has to do with convergence.That there is a cycle is obvious. What the cycle is is not so obvious;yet. And so the steps from the behaviour of the moon is not so easily seen or explained.That it is the behaviour of the moon I have no doubt. These things seem so intimately linked to the times of the phase and the behaviour of the weather that there can be little doubt.But just as tantalising, there is so little proof.It might help if I could find the post that I stated this phenomenon occurs in. But I don't even know a date to within a couple of years. I suspect sometime around 2006 but for all I know it predated the events of 2005.But that was then. This is now. Let us work with what we have and start again.When a pressure system rubs up against another system whose orientation is going the other way, then a lot of fall out occurs. This is true of both flaccid and sharply contrasted systems. That is, whether the NAO is positive or negative, rain is produced by the close proximity of cyclones and anticyclones.A great deal of rain will fall over a fewer regions when the highs are massive and extend over considerable areas and the lows are deep and follow "normal patterns".And a lot less rain will fall a good deal more often over regions less able to deal with the preciptation when the NAO is negative and there are more but "shorter lived" Lows developing and travelling all over the place.The end product below ground is much the same in either case.Originally posted by Jesus:

    By their fruits ye shall know them.

    Severe causes severe.And a range of magnitude sixes can occur in between more mundane magnitude 5 earthquakes.

  3. Convetional wisdomOriginally posted by Global Guide to Tropical Cyclone Forecasting:

    CHAPTER 2: TROPICAL CYCLONE STRUCTURE2.2 TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATIONTropical cyclogenesis is a continuous process that may span several days, rather than a sudden event. At the beginning of this process a tropical cyclone does not exist and at the end one clearly does.During this time, the incipient tropical cyclone acquires a low-level (weather system from around 5 kilometers to several hundred kilometers) circulation and associated organised (heat produced weather phenomena) and the two (together with the surface heat fluxes) begin to co-operate to amplify the system further.The forecaster's task during this period is to monitor the area of responsibility for regions of collocated (orderly) persistent convection and low-level cyclonic circulation(s).Such suspect areas are intensively watched for evidence of organisation in the convection. Formation forecasts are made by evaluating large-scale factors, which are known to inhibit or enhance development.Each ocean basin has operational criteria for tropical cyclone formation. These must be monitored and appropriate administrative and procedural steps taken when they are reached. However, the forecaster should always keep in mind the idea of a process over several days, rather than an instantaneous event when making meteorological assessments. 2.2.1 Monitoring FormationThe Dvorak (1984) analysis is the generally accepted means of monitoring tropical cyclone formation and intensity changes using satellite imagery (Section 2.3.2). This section contains additional material to identify the various stages of tropical cyclone formation and assess the likelihood of further development using both satellite imagery and conventional observations and analyses.Much of this additional material is adapted from recently completed research on western North Pacific tropical cyclogenesis by Zehr (1992). The procedures should be applicable to other basins as well.Zehr (1992) identifies two pre-genesis stages in his conceptual model. Two distinct increases (superimposed on the diurnal cycle) of deep convection occur in a developing disturbance.The first convective increase within a persistent tropical disturbance is the beginning of Stage One. As the convection subsides, a small vortex (less than a few hundred kilometres across) remains.This vortex will probably go undetected in conventional observations unless they are dense or well-placed. A subsequent increase in convection in the vicinity of the small vortex marks the beginning of Stage Two, during which the systems acquires all of the characteristics of a minimal tropical cyclone, including maximum winds of 17 ms-1 (34 kt, 63 km h-1) or more concentrated near the vortex center, a warm core, and associated deep convection.A suggested procedure is provided for formation monitoring and forecasting. The procedure involves assigning each tropical disturbance to one of three stages using satellite and in-situ data. The stages are patterned after Zehr (1992), and are not intended to be rigid classes based on wind speed or pressure criteria. Rather, the stages are intended to focus the forecaster's attention on those trends or conditions associated with development.

    I just pulled that out of the hat. There is a fat lot more.Almost nothing of that kind exists for the resolution of earthquakes despite a plethora of similar unique fingerprints for them.Apart from people with psychosomatic sympathies and the availability of infra sonic and even emf signals there is a relationship to weather systems and other at the moment admittedly aesoteric anomallies that point their way.I've just been through a night of severe cramps which was very revealing but first let me show you conventional medical opinion:Originally posted by

    How can the mind cause physical symptoms?The relationship between the mind and body is complex and not fully understood. When we 'somatize', somehow the mental or emotional problem is expressed partly, or mainly, as one or more physical symptoms. However, the symptoms are real and are not imagined. You feel the pain, have the diarrhoea, etc.How common is somatization?It is common. Sometimes we can relate the physical symptoms to a recent stress or mental health problem. For example, you may realise that a bout of neck pain or headache is due to stress. Anxiety and depression are also common reasons to develop physical symptoms such as palpitations, aches and pains, etc.Often the physical symptoms go when emotional and mental factors ease. However, often we do not realise the physical symptom is due to a mental factor. We may think we have a physical disease and see a doctor about it.[/url]

  4. The point I was going to make actually disproves my pet theory. I was convinced that the bouts occur with the development of tornadic spells.But there was nothing on the NWS tornado reports site. However maybe there is something in the system?Reaching for straws I know.

  5. Originally posted by Weatherlawyer:

    Often the physical symptoms go when emotional and mental factors ease. However, often we do not realise the physical symptom is due to a mental factor. We may think we have a physical disease and see a doctor about it.

    Often the symptoms go when the physical factors cease.I had a blood test due on Friday so I had to have nothing to eat or drink the night before until the test. Unfortunately I had severe leg cramps that night.I've an idea these cramps are directly related to the weather and in dehydration (I had to refrain from drinking anything) and of course no access to pain relief or quinine…Anyway I finally arrived at the surgery with a muzzy headache, occasional dizziness and a feeling not that different from a hangover.And a possible insight for the next time. Smaller suppers, more fluids and some quinine in advance -if I can just get a precursor.Quinine is a bloody awful drug. It leaves a taste that is only slightly preferable to leg cramps. It can turn your mouth brown and put you off your food and drink.And you only need it when it is too late to take it if you haven't taken it as a precaution first.So if you suffer from leg cramps, all you can do is try to recognise the immediate onset of a bout (involuntary stretching and yawning) bend your knees to stop the stretch reaching the affected parts and get up to bend the seized ligamnet back as best you can. Walk around a bit to ease them back to their proper home and empty your bowels.Drinking a lot of water whilst doing this might help. Maybe use a rehydrate formula. Rehydration packs are mixtures of salt and sugar in the ratio of about 5 to 1 by weight or molecule for molecule by molar quantity.Personally I prefer tonic water.And tea.I wonder how much rehydration packs cost…..

  6. I couldn't find a copy of Richard Inwards' work online but here is a US book of the same ilk:'m not in love with Google Books. But I found more here: see they had the same OCR problems I had when I tried a scanner on my copy.Looks like I have to wade through crap once more.

  7. WEATHER LORE: A COLLECTION OF IOVERBS, SAYINGS, AND RULES CONCERNING THE WEATHER. What the problem is.In the good old days the publishers of a book (especially a scientific text book with lots of quotes from other works) would use any font they found handy.And the fonts were often so closely matched that OCR has dificulty resolving them. The quote above is a good example of such a bad example. It should read:WEATHER LORE: A COLLECTION OF PROVERBS, SAYINGS, AND RULES CONCERNING THE WEATHER. There were no rules about shouting in the good old days either.

  8. This makes a lot of sense if you are an academicOr an idiot:Originally posted by Ann Idiot:

    From this admittedly cursory bibliographical survey, one can safely surmise that 'weather proverbs' constitute a legitimate subtype of the proverb genre and further that the study of them falls appropriately under the rubric of paremiology. [Proverbs The STUDY of provwerbs. The study of weqatherlore falls into the category the study of proverbs?]I believe this is a generic error and that what are commonly called weather proverbs are nothing more than superstitions.[Well I believe the world is round but who's going to believe me, with lumps like him around?]What has tended to confuse folklorists is that whereas superstitions are more often than not free phrase, weather superstitions frequently occur in rhymed fixed-phrase form. In other words, they are superstitions with the textural features of proverbs (and riddles).It is likely that these textural features are present for mnemonic purposes. It is easier to remember a fact if it is couched in rhyme. The point, however, is that a rhymed superstition is still a superstition, not a proverb.

    The fool goes on to miss another point:

    Let us take a representative instance. There is a venerable folk belief that a red sky in the evening signals fair weather to follow while a red sky in the morning predicts bad weather. Two distinct 'proverbs' based on this belief are to be found in The Oxford Dictionary of English Proverbs, Third Edition (1970). They are: Sky red in the morning is a sailor's (shepherd's) warning; sky red at night is the sailor's (shepherd's) delight. Evening red and morning grey help the traveller on his way; evening grey and morning red bring down rain upon his head.This is an old tradition going back as many have observed to a New Testament version (Matthew 16:2-3): "When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red. And in the morning, It will be foul weather today: for the sky is red and lowering." The Biblical text provides a useful terminus ante quem for this belief which is one of the numerous weather sayings which has been tested by meteorologists and found to be relatively accurate.

    What point he missed is that rain is not a problem, for sailors. In fact since the average sailor relied on storms for power, rain signifies profit.Not so the shepherd. Why would he want green grass instead of drought? Oh yes, he wants to show fat sheep to his employer. Hmmmm…

  9. Originally posted by Weatherlawyer:

    Quite how the two concepts of angelic behaviour and watering the deserts fit together will have to await a time I can remember what I was going to say.It's one thing to have a bunch of thought zapping the internals of your cranium. It's quite another to concentrate on a computer keyboard and struggle to snatch them out of the brain that is struggling with two minds.And I have forgotten the best bits. Tune in for enlightnement -if and when I get it.Edit:I get it.It's not so much that deserts will blossom as the rose as deserts will always be deserts, wilderness wilderness.

    They haven't suddenly appeared because the devil and co have come down to us.Heaven is well ordered and so is the earth. What may strike us as impossibly complex and unknowable often turns out to be quite straightforward if you give it a little thought and apply logic to it.The angels are no longer allowed to work magic the way they seem to have before the flood. And, what to us, seems catastrophic often turns out to be a blessing in disguise.We are the masters of this universe. That the devil has come here indicates there is no other place acceptable to them. Most likely this is because there is no other existence outside heaven than that which we take for granted.Though why angels should be satified with life on earth as opposed to exile on other planets instead of heaven, beats me.Originally posted by John X:

    This great dragon, the ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, the one deceiving the whole world, was thrown down to the earth with all his angels.

    New Living Translation (©2007) Revelation 12:9

    Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which Jehovah God had made.

    American Standard Version. are widely esteemed for their caution and many cultures revere them as icons of knowledge. Even the medical sciences.At the time of the writing of the Revelation, they were symbols of understanding. Such is not the case these days is it?Except that when you consider the daily news we are fed on contemporary understanding seems to be an axis of evil, does it not? In all walks of life we are taught to go for more sophistry and less of the home grown wisdom.Take today's headlines. What is the difference between North Korea destoying a South Korean ship, Somali pirates kidnapping crews and stealing vessels and the Israeliis boarding a convoy of emergency supplies for the original owners of Palastine?Did you know Britain actively supports the Israelis? It was bad news to me that the British government is so hand in glove with the USA over this rogue state.Not that I was surprised by any means.

  10. Well that was one from the deep end. Why the devil should be targeting the ancient and badly misunderstood subject of weatherlore might seem beyond reason.For something as cautious as serpents at least.But we do tend to throw the baby out with the bath water these days. Todays' aged citizens are viewed as a burden rather than a source of wisdom. When did that start to occur?I have been kicking against the goads trying to get contemporary believers to listen to me. Though why they should when all my predictions turn out the way this spell is going…It is because a cloud of disbelief pervades over any scheme to make people think for themselves.

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