How can you be scared of Hurricane Fred?
edited: Tuesday, June 06, 2006
By Thomas Garrett
Rated "G" by the Author.
Posted: Tuesday, June 06, 2006
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Here's my latest column.
Here it is, Day Three of the 2006 hurricane season, and all is well.
So far, there aren't any hurricanes on the horizon, which makes everyone living along the Gulf Coast happy. If there weren't any hurricanes this season, they probably wouldn't be disappointed.
With the hurricane season comes the hurricane names for 2006. Last year, the folks who name hurricanes ran out of names. Well, they didn't really run out of names, they just used all the ones on their list and had to start naming them after the Greek alphabet.
That made me wonder what would happen if the season were so severe that they went through the Greek alphabet? What would they name hurricanes then? Most people don't understand Latin, and hardly anyone uses the Phoenician alphabet these days.
I suppose they could get one of those baby name books and pluck some out of it. I wonder if that's how Brangelina got the name for their baby, Shiloh, which is supposed to be Hebrew for "messiah" or "peaceful one."
Apparently the names help hurricane watchers keep track of storms, and through the years there have been some doozies Carla, Camille, Andrew, Katrina along with some whose names didn't quite match their ferocity such as Floyd. Devastating as it was, a hurricane named Floyd just doesn't generate a lot of fear.
Think about it. Would you grab up your possessions and run for the hills if someone told you, "Better run, Floyd's comin'."
I always think of Floyd the Barber on "The Andy Griffith Show" when I hear the name Floyd. Now, if he was coming, I probably would head the other way. I always thought Floyd the Barber was kind of creepy, that he was the kind of guy who would have a secret room in his basement, mysterious mounds in back of his house and smile knowingly anytime there was a mention of someone gone missing from Mayberry.
But don't you think if hurricanes are going to be named, they should have scary or fierce-sounding names? I mean, Hurricane Attila certainly would indicate this is one bad storm. Hurricane Voldemort sounds scary, especially to Harry Potter fans.
Zoltan could make a good hurricane name, especially if pronounced as "ZOL-tahn."
I'll admit some hurricanes have managed to overcome pleasant-sounding names. Katrina sounds a ballerina, except last year she proved to be a six-ton ballerina who danced all over New Orleans. Andrew is pleasant-sounding enough, but after leveling Florida it proved it wasn't just a namby-pamby storm.
But so many hurricane names just don't instill fear and an urge to relocate to a higher elevation. Hurricane Bruce, for example. There's just nothing threatening in the name Bruce, nothing to make people feel they should get out of the way. No, it's more likely to inspire you to say, "Hey, Bruce." I've known several Bruces in my life, and all were quite pleasant people to be around.
Hurricane Joe doesn't fit, either, although it'd be a great character name. Fred isn't a particularly threatening name for a hurricane, either. Nor is my name. Would you run from Hurricane Sonny? (Or from the name on my driver's license, Thomas?)
Yet Hurricane Helga carries a bit of an edge. Conan would work well, too, although you'd have to say it as Conan the Hurricane to make it sound truly fearsome. Hurricane Damien need I say more?
I just hope they avoid picking names from "The Andy Griffith Show" in the future if they want people to treat hurricanes seriously. Somehow, the least-threatening names have got to be Hurricane Opie and Hurricane Gomer.
For the record, here are the official hurricane names for 2006:
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|Reviewed by Susan Corpany
|Funny stuff! I've got a character in a book I'm writing who draws pictures of hurricanes based on their names. For example, Andrew was a prep-school kid who had been teased by too many bullies. I was in the path of Floyd, had he decided to come ashore, but that's my grandfather's name, so I had a hard time feeling threatened. Yes, I think they should pick more threatening-sounding names. Some of these sound like hurricanes that should be in nursing homes. Hurricane Joyce? Look out!|
|Reviewed by Jill Christine Carpenter
|I love Conan The Hurricane! Great name! Debby wouldn't be a good name for a big storm...it just makes me think of cookies. I guess there could be Little Debbie Hurricane Bars?
Sonny, this was fun to read. You're right though, I might not be afraid of Hurricane Sonny...But I might head for the hills if Hurricane Cher blew through. :o)
|Reviewed by m j hollingshead
|thought provoking article, chuckle|
|Reviewed by Cynthia Borris
|Interesting list and what a shame, Gordon is such a nice name. Hope it's a mild breeze so I can keep it on my choice of hot-guy names. Oscar? Might be a weiner of a storm.