My next on-air appearance isn’t until Monday evening. I’m looking at weather maps anyway. It’s what I do.
Like so much else in life, becoming a meteorologist was a sort of random occurrence. Most meteorologists I know were fascinated by weather growing up. Not me. I was a city boy. The buses always ran. The subways always ran. In New York City you look down.
Growing up I wanted to be on radio and was for eleven years. TV didn’t attract me until I was around 30.
My first TV job was co-hosting PM Magazine/Buffalo. We began in late August, when Buffalo is its most charming. It really is a lovely city until about Thanksgiving.
Everything you think you know about Buffalo weather is correct.
PM Magazine was an ‘on location’ show. It was one of the first to take advantage of the change from film to tape.
1980 was before the ubiquity of four wheel drive. We drove Buffalo’s winter in a large Dodge van.
It didn’t take long to realize this wasn’t a good career choice. I remember doing ins-and-outs in front of Army helicopters at Niagara Falls International. It was so cold my lips couldn’t properly pronounce words!
A weekend weather job opened up at the station. Two days a week I could stay off the road. Of course I knew zero about meteorology.
I started to look into weather and was quickly hooked. I’m a math guy. I like maps and charts and graphs. Weather was full of those.
It didn’t take long for Helaine and me to drive to Toronto scouring for books on meteorology. I made friends with the guys at the Buffalo Weather Service Office. I took it all seriously.
Later I took 53 credits from Mississippi State University and received their certification. That qualifies me to join the American Meteorological Society and call myself a meteorologist.
The maps and charts really do talk to me. I look at my tools and feel the weather. It’s pretty cool.
Another lucky choice.