May 31st, 2006

Seattle weather forecasts decoded!

In most of the world, when they say "20% chance of rain", they mean that there is a twenty percent chance that rain will fall that day and an eighty percent chance no rain will fall.  If it falls, you get a shower, or maybe a storm or something like that.  In Seattle, the last six months have demonstrated to me that this isn't the case here.  "20% chance of rain" here actually forecasts a 100% chance that "20% rain" will fall.  20% rain is like a piddly little drizzle.  40% rain is a little more substantial, but it's not really until 80% rain that it starts to get a little respectable.

I think they say "20% chance of rain" just to keep people from getting depressed.  If they said "100% chance of piddly little drizzle" every day for a week, there would doubtless be some sort of revolt.