Edit ModuleShow Tags

Afterthoughts: Cones of Uncertainty

What we think about when we think about hurricanes.


Published:

Photo: courtesy of nws/noaa Illustration: Gary Saito 

Hawai‘i has been dodging one hurricane after another this year. With El Nin~o fueling an unprecedented series of tropical storms, the season has sometimes felt like a perpetual string of cyclones, headed straight for the Islands. It can start to wear on a person’s nerves. Welcome to my train of thought for the past few months:

 

  •  Man, look at that cone of uncertainty on the weather forecast. The hurricane is headed straight for us!

  • Case of water? Check. Bale of toilet paper? Check. 20-pound bag of rice? Hmm, better grab another one.

  • How is it so muggy right now?

  • How did I choose the exact wrong time to wash and wax my car?

  • I’ll probably get a couple of days off work from this, right?

  • I could totally surf this storm-surge swell. I would definitely not wipe out and die.

  • Wait, what if my workplace actually shut down for months? That wouldn’t be good.

  • This is how the zombie apocalypse starts, isn’t it?

  • It takes too long to buy a gun—could I use this broomstick in a post-apocalyptic situation?

  • These drink coasters would probably hurt if I lobbed them hard enough at a marauder.

  • Who are they going to get to play me when they make a movie of this?

  • Jason Statham, probably.

  • Am I going to have to evacuate? I’d never be able to sleep on one of those flimsy shelter cots.

  • My house is a half-mile out of the inundation zone? Score!

  • Oh, wait, my house is actually a half-mile inside of the new “extreme” inundation zone? Crap!

  • Oh, wait, those zones are for tsunamis. Never mind.

  • Do they have wi-fi at the emergency shelter?

  • Are there going to be enough outlets at the shelter to charge my phone? Or is it going to be like being stuck in an airport?

  • How long could I live without my phone? And can you really call that living?

  • If my phone died, how would I reach anyone when I don’t actually know a single person’s phone number by heart anymore?

  • If I had 10 minutes in an overcrowded Wal-Mart, and one backpack, what would I pick?

  • How many cans of chili can one person carry at a time?

  • These jalousie windows are going to last about two seconds in a hurricane, aren’t they?

  • Duct tape would work, right?

  • I bet my place holds up better than my neighbor’s. Look at those flimsy eaves.

  • Damn, I should have bought better insurance.

  • So what exactly is a cone of uncertainty?

  • I should start a band called Cone of Uncertainty.

  • How about Windy Mike and the Cones of Uncertainty?

  • Our music will blow you away!

  • OK, I deserve a hurricane for that one.

  • These weather-casters are just making up these cones to mess with us, aren’t they?

  • I almost want this hurricane to hit us just so it’ll be cooler, finally.

  • Oh, it’s gonna miss us? And there’s going to be another week of hot, muggy weather? Followed by another hurricane?

  • Great. I’m so glad to be alive.

  • Man, that hurricane is headed straight for us!

 

READ MORE STORIES BY MICHAEL KEANY

 

Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Subscribe to Honolulu

Honolulu Magazine November 2018
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Trending

 

Black Friday and Small Business Saturday Cheat Sheet

Black Friday

Get the scoop on extended hours, day-of deals and deep discounts.

 

9 Greatest Honolulu Homes

Great Homes

Stunning, historic, extraordinary.

 

Can the Mainland Do Poke Right? Do We Want Them To?​

Poke

Martha Cheng, author of The Poke Cookbook and former line, talks about how a New York City publisher decided Hawai‘i’s favorite pūpū was for everybody.

 

50 Essential Hawai‘i Books You Should Read in Your Lifetime

Books

The most iconic, trenchant and irresistible island books, as voted by a panel of literary community luminaries.

 

Everything You Need to Know About Local Fruit in Hawai‘i

Fruit

Fruits are part of our history and culture, a way for us to feel connected to our community.

 

 

A Local’s Guide to Buying Reef-Safe Sunscreen

Sunscreen

Five Hawai‘i brands have created reef-safe sunscreens that are safe for your ʻohana and the ocean. 

Edit ModuleShow Tags