UPDATE Dec. 2013: Climate.Gov has released a newer and more accurate version of their "Chance of a White Christmas" map, based on the new 1981-2010 data set. Unfortunately, due to it being a different design, I can't compare it to the previous climate data set any more than I did last year in my blog entry "White Christmas vs. Global Warming."
ORIGINAL REPORT (Nov. 2009):
With holidays coming up, the song "Over The River" starts playing in my head... but why did the "horse" have to "know the way through... drifting snow" in a Boston suburb for Thanksgiving? It turns out that most Holiday lore was invented in the 1800s during a climatic event known as "The Little Ice Age," when pre-holiday snow was common in the populated areas of New England and Europe. I've dusted off a blog entry that I wrote in 2006 and have refreshed it with larger graphics and corrected links.
Read on to find out to find out the meteorological significance of these holiday gems:
"Over the River and Through the Woods" (1840s)
- November snow was common in Boston
Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" (1840s)
- London would often have snow cover in December
"Twas the Night Before Christmas" (1820s)
- December snow was typical then in New York City
- Reindeer (Arctic animals) aren't found at this latitude anymore
The Song "A White Christmas" (1942)
- Was done later but they were "dreaming" about stories their grandparents told them
As much as 27 inches of rainfall has closed I-95 in South Carolina, as well as nearly 400 other roads and 165 bridges!
Over 17 inches of rain fell near Columbia, South Carolina just last night!
The extreme rain continues today, with the Carolinas in the cross-hairs. This one could be a 1,000 year event.
Hurricane Joaquin rapidly strengthened into a monster storm overnight -- this changes everything.
Will Hurricane Joaquin be the next "Isabel" or "Sandy?" Does it even matter?
It's not a matter of "if" but "where" the flooding footage you'll see on the news later this week will be from.