Jul 6, 2011

Meteorological inheritance

What are the two things we learn about reputations?

The first is that we "earn" them and the second is that they "precede" us.

Reputations are earned over time

But from a logical standpoint that doesn’t make sense:

If in fact I “earned” a reputation, that implies – at least to some degree – that I performed some sort of work beforehand to achieve it. Thus, by deductive reasoning, that means that “I” – not the “reputation” – had to be first. Otherwise (and as the saying goes), if the reputation “preceded” me: I would have inherited it.

We could blame it on my mother or father instead.


That decisive revelation brings me to Belgian rainfall.

I have been amply forewarned about Belgium’s notoriously reputation as a soggy, stormy and – if you are walking down a hill after a rain shower (on account of the plentitude of slugs sliming their way across the road) – slippery country.

Florida wins in terms of "gross" precipitation

Belgium is to rain what Florida is to sun:

Expect it every day, and yes – in both cases, your best bet to protect yourself (from the soaking and sunburn) is to use an umbrella.


Shockingly, however, Florida gets more rain then Belgium.

Clearly, one reputation is at fault – either Florida is not the sunshine state or Belgium is not the rainfall country.


But Belgium makes up lost ground
with its steady rains and lesser evapotranspiration

What’s going on?

This is a hydrologic parlor trick of sorts. My slight of hand was to conveniently glance over the evaporation picture and only focus on rain. You see, Belgium may not get as much rain, but it more than makes up for it by having much lower evapotranspiration as well.


Belgium’s rain falls steadily in all four seasons, too.

Compare that to most of Florida’s rain falling in its four core summer wet season months.

Rest assured, Belgium has sunny days, too!

Are reputations earned?

My recommendation is to have an umbrella on hand at all times in Belgium. It rains all year round and – out of nowhere – at any point in the day. You’ll want to keep an umbrella handy in Florida too – although not for the rain (i.e. intense spurts of sideways rain and lightning render them useless,) but rather for those intense bouts of mid morning sun that strike all year round.

It could serve as a handy parasol instead!

2 comments:

Tabor said...

An interesting comparison and something I would not have considered. Denmark is know for being gray and rainy most times...is this the same situation, I wonder.

jabblog said...

Lovely photo:-)