Having been waylaid, so to speak, and absent from the tropics with the exception of a brief foray in the month of June, we've been neglectful of putting up our annual, strictly non-scientific (but highly accurate) hurricane predictions.
No doubt there are going to be some who'll say, "That's fine and well, but you've made it easy for youself this year. The hurricane season's almost half over--we're into the month of August already!" That's true, and as the old ditty goes, "June too soon, July stand by...August------?" I could never remember what rhymed with August.
Then I found this late 19th century manuscript on the web which solves that mystery.
August rhymes with "look out you must." At least it does, if you put the accent on the second syllable of August. But I digress.
The first tropical storm, at long last (8/10) is already out there.
So with no time to waste, we've called our old time prognosticator "Typhoon" O'Connor (who otherwise refused to be named or depicted) to give us this year's belated reading on the thickness of caterpillar's fur, the direction in which land tortoises are crossing the road, near and offshore water temperatures and other inchoate observations leading to an accurate prediction of what might come.
"Activity's light this year (obviously)," he says. "But that don't mean nothing's gonna happen. If it comes this year, it'll come late. And if it comes, it'll come hard. I wouldn't want to be on the gulf coast when she hits."
Interpretation: the arrival of El Nino presupposes a less active season, yet the surface temperatures of the Gulf are such that if a system gets into that area, chances are good that it will intensify before landfall. The Keys and Key West: shootin' dice, as usual, a couple of late scares maybe. Keep the shutters handy, just in case.