They used to say April showers bring May flowers. There could be flowers out there now – maybe blossoms on lily pads. But from now on the term will be, April showers bring May ... showers.
As I write this, it’s raining. Probably not the shocker headline of the year. In fact, according to some weather watchers it’s been raining steadily, every day, since 1962. I considered this an exaggeration, although I was a bit surprised to see four giraffes running headlong down Orange Street the other day.
“Hey, what’s the rush?” I yelled from under my umbrella.
One of them glanced back long enough to yell, “The first two on board get first class seating!” Poor giraffes – that must have been a pain in the neck.
(An Ark joke is mandatory. You Bible scholars, what was the maximum number of any animal that Moses allowed on the Ark? Look it up, I’ll wait.)
I could live with the rain, if it wasn’t accompanied by the cold. There’s fear that this will be still another Year Without a Summer, the second in a row. Last September a group of Hoosier summer-lovers became so incensed at not getting their season that they went down to Tennessee with tar and feathers, intent on sticking their carbon footprint up Al Gore’s hockey stick graph.
They were unable to find him, having assumed that this famous global warming fighter would be living under a windmill in a solar powered hut in the mountains. There are conflicting stories about whether he was actually in his mansion or on a private jet at the time.
On a related note, is it possible that the unusual cold has been caused by the end of Indiana’s 2010 primary election? All that hot air, suddenly stopped – it would be like the collapse of the Sun. That wouldn’t explain the coldness elsewhere, but I could probably rearrange the graph information to account for it.
But anyway, it’s raining. If I’d waited another half hour before I went out to start my car last week, the rain would have washed the frost off the windshield. Got a lesser of two evils thing going on, there. And if I had a boat, I wouldn’t have to scrape frost at all.
Over winter a lot of American crops down south froze; now they’re drowning. Ever try to harvest soybeans in a swamp? Doesn’t happen. We don’t grow rice around here, people – so if you’re religious start praying, and if you aren’t bring buckets. And towels. And a politician with a long speech.
Speaking of which, we’ve got a long history of pitting our Hoosier politicians against the weather. For instance, we sent a former governor of the Indiana Territory out to do battle with the elements. He lost.
Okay, so technically William Henry Harrison left Indiana to become a senator from Ohio before getting elected President, but Indiana did have a President named Harrison – it was just the other one. The first Harrison survived the Frontier, the Battle of Tippecanoe, and the second most decisive battle of the War of 1812, which took place in 1813. Then he went out and gave the longest speech of any politician until decades later, when Bill Clinton listed his conquests.
The big difference being that Harrison made his speech not in front of Hillary with a rolling pin, but outside in, yes, the rain and the cold. It was the longest inaugural address in American history – and the shortest Presidency.
I’m with you, Mr. President: This weather makes me sick, too.
Here’s an irony for you: President Harrison’s term in office – 31 days – is the same amount of time in which it rained every day before I wrote this column. As you read this, the Sun may be out (it’s that big yellow globe in the sky) and the temperature may be approaching comfortable -- but I doubt it.
(By the way, Harrison’s grandson – Benjamin Harrison of Indiana – was the 23rd President, and the only President whose term did not include a single sunny day in Washington. Coincidence?)
The fish are starting to complain. “Jeez,” I heard one say (I speak fluent Carp, although my accent’s a little muddy), “The humidity must be up to 125%! At this rate, we’ll have to figure out how to sink a dehumidifier into this pond”.
The way I see it, no animal is really benefiting except the famous Churubusco Turtle. Did you know that someone tried to drain the pond where it was seen, in an attempt to catch it? Try to drain all this, punk – revenge is wet.
The irony is that the Churubusco Turtle wasn’t there: It was so big that it went off to make Japanese monster movies, and was last seen in Godzilla vs. Gamera.
I have no idea how I ended up off on a history lesson. Maybe the rain’s getting to me. Frankly, there’s a certain point at which rain stops helping good plants and starts turning them into fuzzy mounds of rotten roots and moldy leaves, and won’t that be nice and tasty at harvest time? On the other hand, Indiana is turning into a tropical jungle of less savory plants, such as nettles and poison ivy.
At least we’ll have grass to eat: The last time I was able to get out and mow the lawn, Harrison was President.
Oh, and what was the maximum number of each animal Moses allowed on the Ark? None. It was Noah’s Ark – Moses’ story was a good deal drier.