Birthday Post Mortem

Damage in Connecticut was significant, but manageable. We proved we could do handle it.

Yesterday was my birthday. I had a great time, but nothing comes easy. A Severe Thunderstorm Watch was issued as I got to work and from there things just spiraled.

One cell in Massachusetts was particularly vicious. We were able to track it as a Tornado Warning was issued, then started giving a heads up to Connecticut communities in the path. The Connecticut Tornado Warning soon followed.

We preempted the regularly scheduled newscast and stayed on long past our normal off time at 5:00 PM.

I’m not sure I mentioned this before, but one reason I went to FoxCT is because of Rachel Frank. I sensed before the fact we’d be able to work together. That’s no small thing during severe weather coverage when you two people share time with no script nor coordination other than shoulder taps and what you’re saying on live TV. You need a partner who plays well with others.

She’s a really well trained meteorologist (this year’s New England Emmy winner for weather). She’s also way ahead of me on our weather gear. Rachel was able to punch up screens I might not have thought to use. She certainly made the right call knowing when to show the Doppler part of Doppler radar.

What I can do after 27 years is sight read Connecticut maps. Even better I can visualize the map without seeing it. That’s important.

Your TV screen isn’t as dense as paper. We show many fewer towns that a printed map might. I can look at the map and start spouting off other nearby towns which helps viewers better understand the area we’re discussing.

It’s our job to make sure a viewer with minimal knowledge of where he is still gets value from our broadcast.

Anyway we done good! Damage in Connecticut was significant, but manageable. We proved we could handle it.

Thanks Mother Nature. Happy birthday to me–not!

In he middle of all this Helaine drove up from home to take me to dinner. She parked in a loading dock the newspaper uses overnight for delivery trucks.

It isn’t very reassuring to text your wife and tell her to stay put (she was in a safe location) because you’re doing tornado coverage. That’s what I had to do!

As the skies cleared we drove to West Hartford and had dinner on the patio at Bricco. That place is hopping on a Tuesday night!

We both had individual pizzas; mine a shrimp pizza with artichokes, soft onions, fresh mozzarella, leeks, plum tomatoes, arugula salad & Grana&#185. Killer!

So, my brthday was a very full day made better by the outpouring on Facebook. Tuesday ended with well over 1,000 birthday greetings on my wall. Yikes! I made sure to go back last night and read every one.

If you’re wondering, yes it was a happy birthday.

&#185 – I had to look it up. It’s cheese.

7 thoughts on “Birthday Post Mortem”

  1. Geoff,
    It was wonderful to have you on the TV yesterday. You were so missed this winter with all that snow.

    Amazing coverage yesterday from you and Rachel. I somehow felt safe just knowing you were on it and would alert us to any problems coming our way. Geoff, you give us a real sense of what is happening during a storm and whether we need to do anything specific to our town.

    Thank you for a job well done.

  2. An interesting weather day, great help from your colleagues, and a wonderful dinner with Helaine – sounds like it was a great day!

  3. Geoff, I watched you and Rachel for the entire time you were on the air. It was wonderful how easily you both worked together, keeping us all informed. It was a fantastic job by both of you!! Thank goodness we all have Fox to watch Fox, Rachel and a fantastic group of news reporters!! My faith in local news/weather television has been restored. Glad to be able to tune in when we needed you most!!!

  4. I have to concur with everyone else. It was so comforting to be able to follow the storms with you and Rachel until the worst had past. When my boys weren’t quite believing the warnings, I said “Geoff just said Naugatuck by name! Stay in the house.” They didn’t even say “Geoff who?”

  5. I agree — it was so much more comforting. I came home just as the bad weather was imminent, we turned on Fox 61, and there you were. I exclaimed…: “Oh thank goodness, Geoff is on — I feel better now.” Good coverage – you were rock solid, just as before, during a storm crisis.

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