The weather was beautiful in Philadelphia this weekend, but inside the winds were picking up, as hurricane-watchers hunkered down — to use a well-worn phrase — to ride out faraway Irma with our windswept, water-logged TV news reporters of choice.
At my house, that meant CNN, because since Katrina, Anderson Cooper's been as inseparable in my mind from hurricanes as Dan Rather once was. By Saturday afternoon, even my husband — who almost never watches TV with me — was beside me on the couch, sticking it out until long after midnight, and returning to watch more with me on Sunday.
I'd like to say it was only concern for friends and family in harm's way that kept me couch-bound, but Facebook posts turned out to be a better way to find out how they were doing. TV news, which mixed technology with the awe-inspiring power of forces technology couldn't control, was more like a drug I couldn't quit.
Signs that you (and, definitely, I) may have overdone it:
- You know the name of the three-legged dog taking in the sights with its owner as the eye passed over Naples, Fla., on Sunday. "Every hurricane story needs a three-legged dog," quipped CNN's Chris Cuomo, of the pooch, which apparently answers (or maybe doesn't?) to Marley, and whose welfare was still concerning viewers on Monday.
2. You were on the night shift with CNN International's Michael Holmes and Isa Soares, whose pronunciation of "hurricane" — he hails from Australia, she from Britain and Portugal — proved jarring to some.
3. You lost track of how many times Chris Cuomo changed rain gear. Whether or not you believe news people should be standing outside in conditions they're warning the rest of us against, they offered an object lesson of how even the most technical weatherproofing might not be able to withstand hurricane conditions.
4. You didn't need to see the before pictures of the Key Largo bar CNN's Bill Weir found destroyed, a few days after he'd done a story there, because you caught the original report.