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By Pete Moore On June 27th, 2011

Give me strength.

The brief outbreak of summer has caused rail chaos in double quick time with journeys cut short, trains forced into go slows and the London Underground (predictably) resembling an oven. Such has been the severity of what the Daily Telegraph describes as a “heat wave”.

The epicentre of this disaster is here in the great and ancient county of Essex, where clouds filled the sky until Saturday night. We’ve had two days – two days – of hot, sunny weather and we’re in meltdown with something called a Level 2 Heat Health warning issued. It’s coming to an end now though with clouds and cooler air coming in from the Atlantic.

Back to normal you might think. Alas, a change in the weather cannot pass without the experts giving us the benefit of their opinions. So the end of the heat wave (stop laughing) will be “dramatic” because “there’s alot of energy in the atmosphere” so we’ll be “lashed by thunderstorms, hail and even tornadoes” and the Met Office has issued a “severe weather warning”.

The country has become a juvenile madhouse. I don’t remember forecasts being so “dramatic”. Michael Fish would put on his tie and say it could be a bit thundery. Now it’s as if a bunch of teenagers are doing the forecasting.


  1. Sensationalism has almost completely taken over television. Watching TV is becoming more and more a total waste of time.

  2. True, true

    It’s a mixture of obnoxious ads, junk news, and reality TV that is about as divorced from reality as one could ever get. That, plus sports.

    There is some quality programs but there is less every year.

    Time to pull the plug.

  3. Scorchio!

  4. Didn’t someone describe it as “mental bubble gum”?
    We are greatly enjoying Wimbledon, and there are some decent current affairs programmes sometimes. I enjoyed the story of Ireland. Much though is utterly boring and banal.

  5. The problem here is that public broadcasting is often dreadfully boring and that whatever remains of news broadcasting has been destroyed by Fox News / CNN American version // Eyewitness News dumbing down.

    Words cannot describe the low quality of news broadcasting in this country. It’s worse than nothing

  6. That trash is obviously trash and therefore inoffensive. Worse IMO are the superficial and over-dramatised “history documentaries”, self-styled science programmes etc., with experts dragged up and filmed with underlighting for cheap effect and music background, a focus on the personal and in general nothing new.

    The kind of weather and news jargon in the post is part of this dramatisation frenzy.

  7. Alert! Alert! Two days of errm, rather warmish weather ahead! Avon, put up the radiation flare shields and clear the neutron blasters for firing! -But the engines can’nae take it, Captain Kirk!
    OK, you have to just accept that riding the tube is going to be a nightmare, because they can’t get A/C to work down there, because of the…technical thingy thing. But otherwise, just put a fan on your desk and turn it on, and in the evening, turn the shower-tap down to “rather cold” …Ouch, OK, not THAT cold…and order your servant to select a bottle of Moet from the coolest part of the cellar, and Tally-Ho, you’re away! It’ll all be over by Christmas, anyway.

  8. It’s part of the 24 hour news culture. Stories have to be interesting, and sensationalising the weather is part of that.

    Pete, I think there are plans to have all underground trains air-conditioned within a few years.

  9. I am always amazed at how many pregnant weathergirls there are! – of course they are all lovely, but it does seem to be an occupational hazard…

  10. “Hot and close, with a little son later”.

  11. well played.

  12. The problem I have with the mainstream media sensationalising the weather is that, every now and then, the weather really does throw up something truly beautiful and sensational, such as solar/lunar eclipses, (yes, astronomic rather than weather-related, sure), interesting cloud formations causing beautiful crystalline rainbows around the sun or moon, the way you can see rain swooping down from a distant cloud, or a dense morning fog suddenly clearing to a blue sky as you drive through it, or rainfall turning to steam in the sunshine, etc, yet these are never the things which are sensationalised by the media. There is so much to stand and gaze in reverance at, if we just stop and look.

  13. Thinking of the thousands of sweaty commuters milling about at the station, being delayed out of Liverpool Street tonight, I was really really sad for them. As I no longer commute by train. I waft about in my comfy comfy air conditioned little Nissan. 45minutes door to door free covered secure parking under the office. Gee it’s a hard life…Mwahhahahha!
    Public transport in Britain? You can keep it.

  14. Oh and using LPG it’s a third of the price of a season ticket (each month) and after three years the cars mine. After three years commuting I have three used annual season tickets.

    London? You can keep it. Go East young man!

  15. Yes, surely.

    When the weather comes on the local TV here, its a five minute show in itself. I always flip the channel unless there’s a blizzard coming in.

    But the real thing, as seen and heard from a park, or even from an office building window, now that’s something that is interesting.