When I’m in Spain I can go for weeks without watching or reading a weather forecast: que será, será and we’ll deal with it when it happens. In the UK, though, weather is a sort of national pastime, and I’ve known whole days planned around which TV channel is showing the weather forecast and at what time.
The wrong forecaster wearing an inappropriate outfit can ruin everything – a sleeveless frock is not appropriate wear for predicting snow, and a too-bright tie or clashing shirt can distract from this topic of national importance. For me, though, the biggest distraction is usually in what is said, as I hate expressions like “clumps of rain” or “rain marching across the country”.
Unsurprisingly, the recent snow across Britain has given new impetus to meteorological discussions, and several times recently I’ve heard people complain that “the pavements are treacherous“. Each time, I’ve wondered momentarily why anyone would trust a pavement, whatever it promised.
Last night’s forecast added another layer of perfidy to the picture, as the weathergirl insisted on how bad conditions would be, particularly in areas of lying snow. I don’t know whether it was her youth, her accent, her inappropriate dress, or simply the number of repetitions of the phrase that made her sound as if she was complaining about a cheating boyfriend.