I used to be astounded by Dr. Mel’s ability in this regard. He remembered individual storms the way Pete Rose remembers individual pitches.
It’s a skill set I don’t have.
There are a few memorable exceptions. Hurricanes and tornadoes, obviously, qualify. So too do major forecast busts. I have a little experience with those too.
The weather tonight reminds me of a particularly painful forecast disaster. My best recollection says this storm’s doppelganger hit in the mid-80s. It was snow. The rudimentary models of that era did a poor job understanding its complex dynamics.
I sat on the air at WTNH and hour-after-hour pointed to the radar, said I could see the storm’s caboose and that it would be gone within the next few hours. I said that through eight or nine inches of additional snow!
It still makes me cringe.
It still makes Helaine cringe. She had to console me.
Viewers were brutal afterward. They wouldn’t forgive easily. For months, no matter where I went I got called on that forecast! It took over a year to for me to remove that one storm’s stench.
As with our current system, this one was obviously moving east into the Atlantic. What wasn’t as obvious was an upper low to the west which sucked moisture back from the ocean.
Sure the low’s center was moving away, but it made no difference. It’s influence was increasing. That more than compensated for its reduced proximity.
It’s a rare scenario you might not see for a decade or more. I still get the heebie jeebies thinking about it.
Glad not to make that mistake again tonight.