Tuesday, April 25, 2006

High speed pursuit of a different kind

I miss high speed pursuits (HSP).

Living in So Cal, whenever the news was slow, you could almost always count on a good HSP coming on the boob tube to satisfy your need for some video voyeurism.

Since moving to the prairie, I've yet to catch even one high speed pursuit on tv.

I miss it.

Today, we were treated to some video viewing in the voyeristic vibe due to a pair of tornadoes that touched down 30 miles south off our small town.

Just as we chuckle at the stuttering LA newsactors...er, I mean newsanchors as they do their best to ad lib and improvise meaningful dialogue during yet another HSP, we thoroughly enjoyed listening to the panic inducing Storm Chasing Meteorologist's diatribes as they see how close they can get to the twistin' and turnin' on the ground.

Just as we held our breath as the HSP car jackers weaves their way in and out of traffic on the rush hour clogged freeways, we gasped as the Chopper 4 cam brought to us in glorious HD color the Fujita-2 scale twister taking off the roof of an airplane hanger at the small airport.

Just as we cheered for the jacked car, now running just on rims after getting the rubber spike stripped out for under it, we stood and applauded as the bigger tornado stalled and seemed to take a leisurely break in a freshly plowed wheat field, only to turn into a counter cyclonic twister and peter out.

Even better were the close-ups of broken windshields and dented bumpers, fellas fresh from the local burger stand giving one word quotes, and young girls upset at the damage done to their brand spankin' new Neon coupes. My new favorite game is to listen as weather reporters, in an attempt to differentiate themselves from their counterparts at competiting stations, compare hail size to golfballs or ping pong balls, baseballs or tennis balls, various coins, and other sundry objects.

A highlight of HSP's occur when they inadvertently draw a crowd of spectators, onlookers, bystanders, and the occassional good samaritan in a big rig who uses his 18-wheeler to block the road.

Today's equivalent was two motorcycle jockeys who were heading south down our main street. I was standing curbside taking digi snapshots of the dramatically clouded sky when they motored by. I yelled out to them that two tornadoes were on the ground just south of here.

One of them raised his arm to reveal a small miniDV can under his jacket and yelled back, "That's where we're headin'!"

Chasing tornadoes on bike back. Now that's Oklahoma in a nutshell.

1 comment:

Ed said...

You know, when I looked at the photos from the day before my first thought was not the fact that they looked beautiful, but that me with the glass is half empty mentality said to myself, those looked like storm clouds. But I said to myself, don't be so negative and enjoy the moment. I can see that the voice in my head was vindicated. I saw the film footage on CNN and thought to myself, I bet that's near Kurt's house. Thankfully it was not too near. I'm glad that it was an exciting moment, but don't get too close. The finger of God is not something to mess with. Keep your head down and stay safe because getting back from Oz is not an easy thing to do.